Gary, IN – Centier Bank, in partnership with the U.S. Small Business Administration, will host a free small business seminar on Thursday, April 28, 2016, Survival Kit for Small Business:  Tools to Help You Promote, Manage, and Protect Your Business.   The seminar takes place from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. at the Marquette Park Pavilion, 1 North Grand Boulevard.

This business event is hosted in conjunction with Money Smart Week (April 23-30, 2016), and is designed to put entrepreneurs and small business owners in touch with business resources to assist with navigating best practices and business management.

“We asked our clients for feedback in providing the best banking relationship and one of the things they asked for was classes to help move their business forward in the market,” stated Jonathan Hildebrand, Vice President of Business Banking.  “We are pleased to provide a team of business experts from Purdue University, McMahon and Associates, and the Office of the Indiana Attorney General to assist small businesses and their impact in their communities.”

Seating for the event is limited.  Light refreshments will be served and a door prize will be awarded to one of the attendees at the conclusion of the presentation.  Please register at or call Sharon Harvey, SBA Economic Development Specialist at (317) 226-7272, ext. 123, by April 21st.



Hammond, IN – Art Russell, Vice President and Community Development Director at Centier Bank, has been named President of the Hammond Education Foundation (HEF) by the organization’s Board of Directors.

Russell has been a Director with the organization since 2012, serving as Treasurer and Vice-President before being named President on Feb. 11th.

“I am very excited about my new role as President of the Board at Hammond Education Foundation,” Russell stated.  “Caring about our students and the extraordinary learning experiences that the foundation provides is paramount towards student success.”

As President of HEF, Russell will oversee a range of programs and committees, aimed at driving student success in the School City of Hammond, a district where nearly 81% of its students are enrolled in the free and reduced lunch program.

“Art has been a great colleague to have at the foundation, a positive voice in the community, and a great mentor to me personally. I am certain that Art is the right person to lead HEF in developing and promoting innovative programs for students in Hammond,” shared Joshua Long, Executive Director.

The Hammond Education Foundation, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, was formed as a philanthropic partner to the School City of Hammond in 1983. The Board of Directors, comprised of business, health, civic and educational volunteers, provides support to the students, teachers and administrators through classroom grants, scholarships and special projects. To date, more than $1,300,000 has been awarded. More information can be found here.


Centier Bank Promotes Traylor

February 11, 2016

bryan_traylorMichael E. Schrage, President and CEO of Centier Bank, announced that Bryan Traylor has been promoted to Senior Vice President – Residential Lending.  Traylor’s office is located at 244 E. Carmel Drive in Carmel, Indiana.

Traylor joined Centier Bank in 2013 as a mortgage sales manager.  Previously, he worked as a mortgage loan officer with experience serving Indiana residents. Traylor has overseen Centier Bank’s rapid growth throughout its Central Indiana markets, including Fort Wayne, Mishawaka, Lafayette, and the Greater Indianapolis region.

In 2015, Centier Bank had record closed mortgage loans (dollar amount) in its bank history with 1,491 loans for $282 million.  “This is attributed to our dynamite lending team, including our team of underwriters and loan servicing associates who work together to respond quickly and efficiently to provide world-class service,” stated Schrage.  “We congratulate Bryan in his promotion to Senior Vice President and look forward to the future growth of Centier’s residential lending division under his leadership.”

Traylor is a graduate of the University of Kentucky with a major in Finance.  He is an Accredited Mortgage Professional (AMP), a designation of the National Mortgage Bankers Association.  He is former president of the board of directors for the Zionsville Chamber of Commerce.  Traylor and his wife, Lindsay, reside in Zionsville with their three children, where he serves on the Zionsville Town Council.



Merrillville, IN – Centier Bank achieved another profitable year of growth in 2015 with reported earnings over $32 million and a return on average assets (ROAA) of 1.13% for the year ending December 31, 2015.  Total loans grew by over $350 million, or 15% from the prior year.  Centier Bank achieved two significant milestones in 2015 when the bank surpassed $3 billion in total assets and $300 million in core capital.

“Commercial Loans grew by $275 million in 2015, an increase of nearly 16%,” stated Mike Schrage, Centier Bank President and CEO.  “Last year, we had record numbers for Consumer Loans, with over $102 million in new loans opened.  We also had record closed mortgage loans (dollar amount) in our bank history with 1,491 loans for $282 million.”

In keeping with strategic plans for expansion across Northern Indiana, Centier Bank opened a retail branch and business banking center in Downtown Indianapolis, located at 1 N. Pennsylvania, one block southeast of Monument Circle.  The bank’s prominent Greater Indianapolis banking and loan team is projected to grow over the next several years, as Centier Bank plans to open multiple Central Indiana locations throughout Hamilton, Hendricks, and Boone Counties.  Centier also moved into another historic downtown location in Northwest Indiana, opening a branch inside of the historic 504 Broadway building (formerly Gary State Bank), in Downtown Gary.

“We are excited to be neighbors in these downtown metropolitan areas and hope our presence will contribute to the vitality and growth of our Indiana cities,” stated Schrage.  “Our eyes are on opening a new downtown South Bend location later this year.”

The opening of these loan offices and branches further solidifies Centier’s commitment to remaining a premier community bank and commercial real estate and residential lender in Indiana that remains “Not for Sale.”  This “Not for Sale” commitment is a personal promise that Centier Bank will remain independently owned and operated for generations to come.  Since 2007, Centier Bank has been among the top 10 “Best Places to Work in Indiana” by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and received national attention by American Banker magazine as one of the Top 20 Best Banks to Work For in the U.S.A.

As banking continues to integrate technological advancement, Centier will also expand its growing network of EZ Deposit ATMs and Interactive Teller Machines.  These ATMs accept deposits and process more types of transactions than traditional ATMs, offering expanded banking conveniences throughout our service network.

“We are looking ahead and building convenient electronic banking amenities that cater to clients who need flexible banking hours,” stated Schrage.  “We want clients and future generations to experience the Centier difference, even if they don’t always step foot into a branch.  We even have the technology to complete and approve small business loan applications from a mobile device!  But, a tap on your phone will never replace the warm handshake of a Centier banker…we will ALWAYS be here to offer you a personalized, friendly banking experience.”

About Centier Bank

Centier is the largest privately-owned independent bank in Indiana and remains committed to being owned and operated by the Schrage family in the future.  The bank has retail banking locations in Allen, Elkhart, Hamilton, Lake, La Porte, Marion, Marshall, Porter, St. Joseph, and Tippecanoe Counties in Indiana.  For more information on Centier products and services, visit


Freedom Fund

The theme for the evening was “Pursuing Liberty in the Face of Injustice”. Guest speaker was Mr. Odail Thorns, a retired Senior Executive at General Motors, a Civil Rights Activist and volunteer for Voters Registration.  During his presentation, Thorns stressed the importance of a local community working together to make an impactful difference.

During the evening festivities, the local NAACP chapter recognized Centier Bank for its sponsorship of more than 100 youths.  Additionally, Patrick Morrissey, Vice President/Senior Lender of Business Banking at Centier, was acknowledged with the President’s Award in appreciation for his many hours of dedication and leadership for the Greater Lafayette area.  Morrissey currently serves on the Executive Board as Treasurer.

“This is an excellent accomplishment for Pat,” stated Art Russell, Director of Community Development/CRA Officer for Centier Bank.  “His hard work and strong leadership in his community has resulted in this well-deserved recognition.  I know he is very proud of the work that he has accomplished with other board and community members.  We wish the entire NAACP continued success.”

About Centier Bank

Since 1895, Centier Bank has transformed from a small community bank into the largest, private, family-owned bank in Indiana.  For more than 120 years, each generation of the Schrage family has contributed a lasting legacy that has created a company built on family values, community partnership, business relationships, and a corporate culture unsurpassed in today’s community banking.  For more information on Centier Bank services, visit its website at


Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3In honor of Veteran’s Day on November 11th, Centier Bank hosted a morning ceremony to honor and celebrate service men and women in the United States military.  The occasion was commemorated with a color guard presentation and vocal soloist, as more than 435 relatives were personally honored during the mid-day ceremony for Centier associates and their family members.

This is the seventh year that Centier has hosted a Veteran’s Day event for its associates. During the ceremony, Centier Bank Director of Investment Services, Anthony Contrucci, led guests in reciting the pledge of allegiance as the American flag was presented by the color guard of the Women’s Auxiliary from the 1st American Legion.  Next, Captain Dean Larson, U.S. Navy (Retired), a representative from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), Department of Defense office, acknowledged Centier Bank for publicly supporting its military service members.

“Supportive employers are more critical than ever to our national defense,” stated Larson.  “Since 1972, the ESGR committee has been working to foster a culture in which all employers support and value the employment and military service of the members of the National Guard and Reserve.  I am very proud of Centier, my bank.”

A Statement of Support certificate was provided to each of Centier’s 52 branches and was proudly displayed in branches the week of November 9th.  Centier’s statement of support pledges that:

  • Centier fully recognizes, honors, and complies with the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Right Act (USERRA).
  • Centier will provide managers and supervisors with the tools they need to effectively manage those employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve.
  • Centier appreciates the values, leadership and unique skills Service members bring to the workforce and will encourage opportunities to employ Guardsmen, reservists, transitioning Service members and Veterans.
  • Centier will continually recognize and support our country’s Service members and their families in peace, in crisis, and in war.

“By signing the Statement of Support, Centier Bank sends a clear message they stand committed to their military employees and recognize the integrity, global perspective and leadership abilities they bring to the workplace, “stated Steve Lynch, State Chair, Indiana ESGR.

“As a family organization, we have many guardsmen, reservists, and veterans among our associates and their extended family who have made their mark in history by courageously and selflessly defending our great nation,” stated Darrell Jaggers, an Army Veteran and Senior Partner of Centier Bank  “Our corporate vow of support means so much to service men and women who have clearly made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.  They continue to put their lives on the line to defend civil liberties and freedom for the United States of America.”

Photo 1 Cutline:  Centier Bank held a Veterans Day ceremony in front of its Operations Center on Wednesday morning. 

Photo 2 Cutline:  The American flag is raised during a morning Veterans Day ceremony held at Centier Bank for its associates.

Photo 3 Cutline:  Centier Bank was presented with the Statement of Support from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), Department of Defense office.



The Town Board of Merrillville has appointed Centier Bank’s Art Russell as representative to the Shared Ethics Advisory Commission. A resident of Merrillville, Russell was unanimously approved as a citizen commissioner at the Board Meeting held on July 14th.

The Shared Ethics Advisory Commission is made up of various communities and counties throughout Northwest Indiana.   Russell joins the Shared Ethics Advisory Commission representing the Town of Merrillville to promote ethical behavior throughout the municipality.   Russell will work with two to three town employees who will receive instruction to become ethics trainers.  Trainers will be responsible for training all town personnel.  Training includes ways to better identify and deal with ethical aspects of decision-making that affects the residents and businesses of Merrillville.  In addition to employee training, the commission also provides sessions designated for municipal department heads and is available to residents serving on boards and commissions.

“A good democracy is where people are held accountable for their actions, where progress and growth can be obtained by having the tools and training to bring about positive change,” stated Russell.  “Having good ethics and standards are important to develop one’s character, especially when they represent so many people.  I am proud to serve my community as citizen commissioner.”

Russell serves as Director of Lake County Community Lending for Centier Bank. A career banker, he has lived and served Northwest Indiana communities for the past 33 years.


Jones Joins Centier Bank

August 12, 2015


Michael E. Schrage, President and CEO of Centier Bank, is pleased to announce that Cindy S. Jones has joined Centier Bank as a Mortgage Loan Officer.  Her office is located inside of Centier’s Lafayette Mortgage Banking Center.

With nearly 25 years of experience in mortgage loan origination, Jones has dedicated her career to making the dream of homeownership possible for families across Tippecanoe County.  As a member of Lafayette’s growing mortgage lending team, she works closely with families to provide personalized service and attention to each stage of the mortgage process. 

Jones is a graduate of the Indiana Mortgage Academy.  She serves on the Board of Directors for Jessie’s Kids, an organization that helps at-risk children in Tippecanoe County.   She is also a lifelong resident of Lafayette, where she raised a family with her husband of 35 years, Terry.

About Centier Bank

Since 1895, Centier Bank has transformed from a small community bank into the largest private, family-owned bank in Indiana.  For 120 years, five generations of the Schrage family have contributed a lasting legacy that has created a company built on family values, community partnership, business relationships, and a corporate culture unsurpassed in today’s community banking. 

Centier was named among the top “Best Places to Work in Indiana” by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce for the ninth consecutive year and was named “Best Bank for Business” by Northwest Indiana Business Quarterly magazine for the 13th straight year.


All educators, in areas where Centier has a presence, are invited to attend the FREE 10th annual Financial Literacy Fair for Educators scheduled to be held at Centier’s Corporate Centre on Thursday, November 12, 2015, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Space is limited to 100 attendees.

Teachers will receive financial literacy materials that can be implemented directly in their classrooms and have been correlated to state standards.  The first ten schools to register will receive a $50 check at the conclusion of the fair to help subsidize the cost of their substitute.

Educators from community organizations will also find the materials interesting, easy to follow and very valuable for their clients.  All will leave with free financial wellness materials that can be taught to their students or clients.

Each presentation will conclude with a question and answer segment, and the day will also offer opportunities for one on one discussions.

Please register at  For more information, please contact Dian Reyome, Centier Bank Financial Capabilities Officer at or 219-755-6140 ext. 1832.


INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Michael E. Schrage, President and CEO of Centier Bank, announced the addition of five new business leaders who have joined Centier Bank’s new full-service banking center, located at 1 N. Pennsylvania Street in Downtown Indianapolis. All five bankers previously worked for First Financial Bank, which vacated the downtown retail location earlier this year.

Centier Bank hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony on July 2nd to celebrate the bank’s grand opening.  The new Centier branch features retail services on the main floor and commercial services on the 13th floor.

Mary Jo Kennelly has joined Centier Bank as Vice President and Group Manager of the Downtown Indianapolis branch. She brings over 40 years of banking experience in the Indianapolis market to Centier Bank. Kennelly’s responsibilities include the management of Centier’s Indianapolis commercial lending team, as well as client and brand development in the downtown Indianapolis market.MaryJo_Kennelly3

Wendy Bullard has joined Centier Bank as Assistant Vice President and Branch Manager of the Downtown Indianapolis branch. Bullard has over seven years of experience in the banking industry. She is an active volunteer for the Arthritis Foundation and a member of the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce.Wendy Bullard

Sheila Kneringer has joined Centier Bank as Assistant Manager of the Downtown Indianapolis branch. A resident of Greenwood, she joins Centier Bank with more than 13 years of financial experience.

Sheila Kneringer_Official

Jonathan Walker has joined Centier Bank as Assistant Vice President and Business Banker of the Downtown Indianapolis branch. In addition to his Bachelor’s degree in Business Management and M.B.A in Finance, Walker has over 13 years of banking experience. He is a board director and vocational committee chair of the Rotary Club of Carmel.

Jonathan Walker

Amber Boles has joined Centier Bank as Universal Banker of the Downtown Indianapolis branch. Amber brings over four years of banking experience to Centier Bank.  She resides in Whiteland, IN.

Amber Boles

About Centier Bank

Centier is the largest privately-owned independent bank in Indiana and remains committed to being owned and operated by the Schrage family in the future.  The bank has 51 retail banking locations in Lake, Porter, La Porte, Elkhart, Marshall, Allen, St. Joseph, Hamilton, Marion and Tippecanoe Counties in Indiana.  For more information on Centier products and services, visit