It may have been 160 years since the first strong box was loaded on a Wells Fargo stagecoach and the driver and shotgun guard climbed aboard to guarantee service to their customers, but in Alaska that same tradition of service continues. Last week at the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce meeting Steve Manley, Business relationship manager for Wells Fargo presented a strong box of sorts to Linda Swarner, executive director for the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank, and Food Bank board members James Fisher and Sal Mattero, in the form of a Wells Fargo check for $16,000, "2012 is Wells Fargo's 160th anniversary. As one of the few American companies doing business for 160 years under its founding name and line of business, we understand that our success depends on the success of our communities, and the businesses and customers we serve. To celebrate this milestone, and thank our customers, Wells Fargo is awarding over $2.5 million to more than 60 nonprofits across the country. In Alaska, Wells Fargo is awarding 14 gifts totaling $160,000. We recognize the invaluable contribution Alaska's nonprofits make to our communities. With a dedicated board and staff we believe Kenai Peninsula Food Bank is doing its part. So today, it is our privilege to present this check for $16,000 to the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank," said Manley.
In a news release Wells Fargo stated, "Our success depends on the success of Alaska, as it has for the last 95 years that we've called Alaska home. Wells Fargo's commitment to The Great Land is as strong as ever. Here are highlights from recent community support activities:
* Wells Fargo invests $1.5 million annually in more than 300 nonprofits and schools in Alaska. We focus our giving on education, community development, human services, the arts and the environment.
* Each year we sponsor a community support campaign to raise more funds for our communities. In 2011, our team members pledged a record $373,000 for nonprofits in Alaska -- a 30 percent increase over 2010. Wells Fargo contributed an additional $150,000 for a total investment of $523,000.
* Our team members logged more than 9,000 volunteer hours in 2011 -- a dollar value of $195,000.
* Better Business Bureau's 2012 Alaska Business of the Year Torch Award winner.
Wells Fargo is a part of the Alaskan community. We're here for Alaskans now, and in the future."