News Blog

e-BenHow to suit up and protect yourself
Written by Ben Wells, eBanking Specialist

October 9, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – Cybersecurity is a topic that is constantly evolving and will never truly go away. In fact, if you want to be cyber-secure in 2018, my best recommendation is to throw all your electronics out the window, cancel your social network accounts, and avoid things like healthcare and insurance companies. Living under a rock somewhere in the Mojave won’t hurt either. Not for you? Don’t worry – you aren’t alone. It’s a tough battle, but these tips will give you the upper hand in a fight worthy of a UFC pay-per-view.

Facebook is widely regarded as one of the top tech companies, held in the same ranks as Amazon and Google. A recent breach exposing 87 million users account data proves that nobody is safe. In regard to your personal cybersecurity, good password management is a critical step. Keep the following in mind:Padlock on electronics

  • Change your passwords frequently (as often as every three to six months)
  • Do not use the same password for every log in
  • Use long, complex passwords, or passphrases, and find ways to substitute special characters for letters

A good password might look something like “$ummerday#1” but a great passphrase could look like “$unsh1n3onmy$hould3rS”.

Another common cyber-attack is simply a criminal trying to take advantage of you. Remember the following to help protect yourself:

  • Microsoft, Apple, etc. will NOT contact you about a problem on your computer and request remote access to fix the problem
  • Any reputable company, including Decorah Bank, will never call you and ask for your personal information like your social security number, account number, or date of birth

If you are ever suspicious, trust your instincts. Find the real contact information of the company you think is being spoofed and call them back to ask if they tried to contact you.

Finally, protecting your credit might be the most important thing you can do in case your identity does become compromised in a data breach. A small fee at each of the three major credit bureaus will freeze your credit, putting you in control of what it can be used for.

Decorah Bank partners with a company called Cyber Scout, and we offer this service to you at no cost in the event your sensitive information becomes compromised. Learn about it here.

We know it’s a tough world in cyberspace, and unfortunately hackers all over the world are searching for a new opportunity to steal data every day. Sleep easy knowing we are here to help you and keep your financial information secure, and never hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns.


Feed the Pig. Feed the Community.October 1, 2018 – Decorah – Decorah Bank & Trust Co. in partnership with Lynch Family Foundation is holding a community fundraiser for the Winneshiek County Food Pantries through November 16th.

Decorah Bank is collecting monetary donations. Just drop off your donation in our whiskey barrel piggy bank.

Checks can be made out to one of the Winneshiek County Food Pantries: NEICAC, Decorah Community Food Pantry, or Greater Area Food Pantry.

Decorah Bank will match the community’s donations up to $2,500 and the Lynch Family Foundation will match up to $2,500 in pork.



October 1, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – New! Build your savings automatically when you use your debit card. Our Save the Change service is an easy way to build your savings plan by transferring funds from one account to another. We’ll round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and transfer the change from your checking to your savings accounts.

Typical weekly purchases example:

Purchases example

No debit card? No problem. Contact a personal banker  to get started!



Open House invitationSeptember 24, 2018 – Decorah – Join us for the Wealth Management Annex Open House on Tuesday, October 2, 2018 from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm. Enjoy freshly baked cookies from Waving Grains, Impact Coffee, and the company of friends that you know or haven’t met yet.

The Wealth Management Annex opened on July 9th, 2018 and houses its wealth management advisors and support staff. This group has grown to include four Certified Financial Planners, one associate financial advisor, a Certified Senior Advisor, and their support team.

Another layer of protection for our debit card customers.

September 20, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – We are adding a new Fraud Alert Text service as a part of our debit card protection program to help keep your account safe.

In the future, you will receive a text alert if suspicious activity is detected on your Decorah Bank or Cresco Bank debit card. If you receive a fraud alert, you will be asked to reply Yes or No to confirm or deny the activity. If you reply No (the activity is fraudulent), you will quickly receive a follow-up text to let you know that a debit card fraud specialist from SHAZAM (our debit card processor) will call you soon to help protect your account. We will also automatically block your debit card to prevent additional fraudulent activity and assist you.

If you reply Yes (the activity was legitimate), you can continue to use your debit card as usual. If you don’t reply to the text, or your phone number is not a mobile number, we will attempt to reach you via an automated voice call.

Text alerts will display on your mobile from 72718
Automated phone calls will display from 855-219-5399

Save these numbers to your contact list to avoid missing important alerts. This added protection to your debit card is automatic and text message alerts are free.

If you have a question, have a new phone number, or ever suspect a suspicious activity, please call our Customer Support Team at 563.387.5230. As a reminder, we will never request card or account information via text, phone or email. As always, thank you for the confidence you place in us.

Learn more about debit card security.


Top Workplaces Logo

September 17, 2018 – Decorah Bank & Trust Company, together with its affiliate Cresco Bank & Trust, has been awarded a 2018 Top Workplaces honor by The Des Moines Register. The winner list is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by research partner Energage, LLC. The anonymous survey measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, effectiveness, execution, and connection.

“To be a Top Workplace, the business must meet our strict standards for organizational health. The Top Workplace award is not something you can buy, nor does it have fancy perks or benefits,” says Doug Claffey, CEO of Energage. “Our research shows organizations that earn the award have leaders that prioritize and support a healthy workplace culture, attract and retain top talent, and are better equipped to deliver results. It’s a big deal.”

This is the first time Decorah Bank employee-owners participated in this survey. The reason for taking the survey was not disclosed to encourage complete honesty. Feedback from employee-owners provided insight of the organization’s overall health. According to executive vice president, Joe Grimstad, “We were provided survey results to use as a benchmark from other aspiring top workplaces across the nation in financial services. We scored higher than benchmark in all categories, with the exception of one area. This tells us there’s always room for improvement. We shared an overview of the results with our team so together we can celebrate matters of strength and move forward on our focus areas.”

Decorah Bank employee-owners were asked to rank statements on a seven point scale and were encouraged to add anonymous comments in the survey. One such comment from an employee-owner was “It is the first place I’ve worked that truly values family-work life balance. The morale and culture here is positive.” Another commented, “The Bank wants to be progressive and is interested in hearing from staff and customers on ways to improve.”

Grimstad adds, “An organization is only as good as its employees and a quality team doesn’t materialize by happenstance. It takes people who strive for excellence and are passionate about helping others succeed. We’re humbled and happy to be recognized as a Top Workplace in Iowa.”

All staff photo

About Decorah Bank
Decorah Bank & Trust is owned by the Grimstad family and its employees through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan. Over 90 employee-owners serve NE Iowa, SE Minnesota, and assist customers in all 50 states and 22 countries with their financial needs.

About Energage, LLC
Energage is a leading provider of technology-based employee engagement tools and has surveyed more than 47,000 organizations representing well over 16 million employees in the United States.


CD special get ahead of the curveGet Ahead of the Curve

August 15, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – If you are looking for additional ways to save, you’ll enjoy these CD options that will help you get ahead.

13 month CD at 2.25% APY* and/or a 30 month CD at 2.50% APY* with a one-time bump up option during your first term with the 30 month CD only.

Open your Get Ahead CD  online and type in promo code: GetAhead or visit with a personal banker at either Decorah or Cresco  location.

Certificates of Deposit (CDs) earn interest and have no monthly service charge. *Annual Percentage Yield (APY) effective as of 08/15/18 and subject to change. $1,000 minimum deposit. First term on the 30 month bump option means the first 30 months of the date you open the CD. You can withdraw CD money anytime, doing so may subject you to early withdrawal penalties and reduce earnings.

Jason SolandExpert Advice, Personal Attention

August 14, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – Jason Soland joined Decorah Bank & Trust Company on July 2, 2018 as a Trust Officer. Jason comes to us with over 10 years of experience as a financial planner. He enjoys offering solutions that provide clients clear focus and results. Jason now works alongside trust officers Justin Gullekson and Roger Huinker, and a full-time support team.

When we asked Jason what his favorite part of working as a trust officer is, he commented that he wants to demystify Trust and estate services and that it’s not only for those with large net worths. Jason adds, “In reality, your estate doesn’t have to be large before you should start making decisions that will affect your family’s well-being for many years. Ignoring it has impact too. It’s good to see people relax when they figure out that we can help them.”

Jason is located in our downtown Decorah location though he is often visiting people in their home, care center, our Cresco Bank location, or anywhere he’s needed. To further the steps of accumulating, preserving, or transferring assets connect with Jason by calling 563.382.9661 for a no-cost, no obligation appointment or learn more about Jason and our Trust services here.

Jason Soland is a Luther College graduate, is an active volunteer, and resides with his wife and two children in Decorah.

Trust services team

Barn image You're Invited!Attention Farmers!

July 26, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – Join us for Ag Marketing Update seminar on Monday, August 13, 2018 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Cresco Bank & Trust lower level.

Dan O’Bryan, Sr. Risk Management Specialist from Top Third Ag Marketing will be speaking on how you can better market your grain, manage risk, and capture opportunity to ultimately improve the profitability of your operation.

Aaron Thomas, author of, The Sacred Acre, will also be speaking about the importance of how you respond to both good and tough situations when life surprises you with adversity. Aaron will challenge you to look at your life, your family, and your work to see if you are maximizing the circumstances you are presented.

Lunch by McAllister Catering will be provided, compliments of the Bank.

RSVP by calling Lori Truka at 563.547.2244 or click here to register online.



Opening July 9thTrust and Wealth Management Team members

July 3, 2018 – Decorah & Cresco – On July 9th, 2018, Decorah Bank & Trust Co. will open an annexed building to house its wealth management advisors and support staff.  This group has grown to include three Certified Financial Planners, one associate financial advisor, a Certified Senior Advisor, and their support team.

This team is currently located on the upper level of the main building, which has now reached capacity. The addition of the 6,000 square foot annex creates space for future growth in staff.

“As our customers’ financial lives become more complex, we are committing additional resources to the important work of helping people accumulate, preserve and distribute wealth,” says Justin Gullekson.

Joe Grimstad adds, “More and more, routine financial transactions are handled digitally through online and mobile banking channels. The bank’s buildings are primarily a place where more complex transactions and important conversations take place. The Wealth Management & Trust annex will be an added tool for this work.”

Quote from Ben GrimstadThe annex is the completely renovated building to the East of the bank building which was previously owned by Northeast Iowa Telephone Company. Customer access is provided through a passageway that connects the buildings or directly from Water Street through the front entrance.

The wealth management team also provides services from the Cresco Bank office in downtown Cresco.