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2016 MBA Banker of the Year

The Michigan Bankers Association (MBA) has selected Deborah Smith-Olson, chairman and CEO of Lake-Osceola State Bank, as its 2016 MBA Banker of the Year. Ms. Smith-Olson is the first woman to be selected for this honor.

"We are proud to select Deb Smith-Olson for the MBA Banker of the Year Award. Her dedication to the banking industry, the MBA and to Baldwin and the surrounding communities has been exceptional," said Don St. Germaine, board chairman of the Michigan Bankers Association.


The MBA annually selects a member Michigan banker who has shown outstanding leadership throughout the year as its MBA Banker of the Year, based on three criteria:

  • Service to the Michigan Bankers Association
  • Statewide reputation as a banker who is helpful to other state bankers
  • Instrumental in the growth of her/his own bank

"It is particularly rewarding to be selected as the 2016 MBA Banker of the Year," said Smith-Olson. "This award is special since you are nominated and selected by your peers across the state. It is also a reflection on the hard-working team here at Lake-Osceola State Bank who provide quality services to Baldwin and communities in the area."

Ms. Smith-Olson has been the chief executive officer of Lake-Osceola State Bank since 1987 and has been its chairman since 2004. Under Ms. Smith-Olson's leadership, the bank has shown consistent growth -growing by 30 percent during the last decade. The bank has also been rated ?outstanding? during the last three years by the FDIC when evaluating the institution's involvement in its community.

Ms. Smith-Olson has a long history of participation with the Michigan Bankers Association, serving several years on the board of directors and as chairman of the board in 2014. She has served as trustee of the MBA Perry Schools of Banking and held many leadership positions on various MBA committees. She was instrumental in the launch and continuing success of MBA's Women in Banking Conference devoted to the development of women's leadership. She has been a well-known and enthusiastic supporter of the industry and Michigan bankers alike.

Locally, Ms. Smith-Olson has been a long-time champion of her community. She currently serves or has served as a volunteer in several community organizations, including: executive board member of the Spectrum Health Big Rapids/Reed City Foundation; chairperson of Baldwin Promise Authority; treasurer of Baldwin Downtown Development Authority; board vice president of West Shore Community College Foundation; member of the community corrections advisory board of the Department of Corrections; workforce development board member of the Michigan Works! – West Central; and chair of the Lake County Enterprise Community Board, among others. Ms. Smith-Olson also supports the American Cancer Society and the Girl Scouts of America.

“Debbie is a very deserving Banker of the Year recipient. She has worked relentlessly for the Association, and proudly carries on a century of service that her family, as bankers, has provided to their community and our industry,” said T. Rann Paynter, president and CEO of the Michigan Bankers Association.

Ms. Smith-Olson was formally presented with the 2016 Banker of the Year Award at the MBA Annual Convention June 21-24 at Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island.

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