Geneva Bank & Trust was recognized with the second annual Mayor’s Choice Award for Business Investment by demonstrating community leadership and preserving the historic character of their new home, the former Pure Oil Company building at 514 W. State St.
Mayor Kevin Burns presented the award to Darla Yhost, vice president/bank manager, Nov. 15 at the City’s annual Holiday Kick-off Breakfast at the Herrington Inn and Spa.
“In choosing Geneva Bank & Trust as this year’s recipient, we considered investment in Geneva in terms of their building as well as investment in the community,” Mayor Burns said. “The bank continually steps up to take a leadership role; this year as a sponsor of the Geneva Folk Festival, sponsoring music in the downtown Saturday prior to the Festival and as an organizer of the 2013 Shop Local/Bank Local promotion currently underway.”
The Pure Oil Company station, an “English Cottage-style” building constructed in white brick with a blue roof and trim, was opened in 1937 along the historic Lincoln Highway during a time when these businesses began developing their own, unique architectural styles as a way to brand their name and product.
The former station serves as a significant piece of Geneva’s history, which was preserved after becoming the home to Geneva Bank & Trust in March. The bank’s sign post is a genuine Pure Oil sign that was found in West Virginia. The bank also was able to replace the blue terra cotta roof tiles by tracking down the original manufacturer, who opened a production line that had not been used in 40 years.
During the presentation, Mayor Burns noted the bank renovation has garnered state and national recognition from historic preservation agencies.
Geneva Bank & Trust is involved in 26 community organizations and has performed more than 600 hours of community service in 2013. The bank had 47 Geneva merchants participate in the Shop Local/Bank Local program campaign, contributing more than $2,200 in gift certificates and merchandise.