Letter: Ridgewood Savings Bank has not made mass closures in the Bronx

Financial advisor with clients
Photo courtesy Getty

To the Editor,

We’d like to make an important correction to the article “Can bank-starved Bronx communities finally cash in after decades of redlining and mass closures?” The article erroneously asserted that Ridgewood Savings Bank made mass closures last year, which is not true. We want to assure your readers of the Bronx Times that Ridgewood Savings Bank did not abandon local residents or suffer mass closures of our Bronx branches.

Rather, Ridgewood worked closely with numerous Bronx partners – including the New York State Department of Financial Services, University Neighborhood Housing Program, Van Cortlandt Jewish Center, Community Board 8, Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development and the Bronx Borough President’s Office – to pursue a Banking Development District (BDD) Program designation to help Ridgewood Savings Bank continue to serve the financial needs of the community from its Sedgwick Avenue branch location.

All of this resulted in our keeping open the Sedgwick Avenue branch, while, at the same time, also opening a new state-of-the-art branch in the Norwood section at 320 E. 204th St. We shared this wonderful news with the public last summer which was well received by our many partners and customers.

In fact, one of our key stakeholder’s, state Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, remarked at the time: “It is an incredible benefit to our community in The Bronx that Ridgewood Savings Bank has been able to keep open the branch on Sedgwick Avenue. This particular neighborhood has a dearth of accessible banks to serve local residents and businesses, and I am very pleased that people will not have to travel extensive distances over significant elevation changes in order to access their money. Thank you to the leadership team at Ridgewood Savings Bank for being responsive to our community concerns, and let this be an example for all banks that want to understand how to be good community partners to Bronxites.”

Ridgewood Savings Bank remains committed to the Bronx community and to continuing to provide the award-winning banking services and community programming to which our customers are accustomed and deserve.

Leonard Stekol,

Ridgewood Savings Bank, chairman, president and CEO

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