Press Releases


For Immediate Release
April 18, 2007 Contact: Charles Evenson
608-266-2026

First Lady Jessica Doyle to Visit “National Model” Bank Located in Milwaukee’s South Division High School

Student-Run Branch Has Been Featured in Newspapers in Japan and England

(Madison) First Lady Jessica Doyle and DFI Deputy Secretary John Collins will visit the Cardinal Bank located within South Division High School in Milwaukee on Friday, April 20 at 11:15 a.m. The full-service bank, a branch of Milwaukee’s Mitchell Bank, has become a model for similar student-run bank branches throughout the United States.

Mrs. Doyle’s visit is in conjunction with April Saving and Investing Month activities and the Wisconsin Bankers Association’s (WBA) Teach Children to Save Day.

“ This student-run bank is a primary example of the success of financial education in Wisconsin,” said Mrs. Doyle, who is Honorary Chair of the Governor’s Council on Financial Literacy. “It serves as an enriching learning laboratory for students and as a community-building focal point for the neighborhoods surrounding the high school.”

Prior to the Cardinal Bank visit at 10:45 a.m. Mrs. Doyle will do a reading to children at ALBA Elementary School. The reading will focus on a money-related subject and is being done in conjunction with the WBA’s Reading Raises Interest program which encourages students to read, set goals, and save money. Following the Cardinal Bank visit Mrs. Doyle and Deputy Secretary Collins will join a meeting of the Financial Literacy Alliance of Milwaukee for Education (FLAME). FLAME is a financial-institution-based alliance whose goal is to spread financial literacy among urban youth.

Cardinal Bank was founded in 2000 by Vicki Kalman, a former business careers internship coordinator at South Division High School. She worked in partnership with the Mitchell Bank to open the branch. Both Ms. Kalman and the Mitchell Bank received Governor’s Financial Literacy Awards last month for their work in starting the bank.

Cardinal Bank has prospered. Since its inception it has opened hundreds of accounts, offered loans to its customers, has deposits of over $850,000 and conducts between 350 and 400 transactions per day during the three days it is open each week.

Many former student staff members have gone on to jobs in the banking industry due to the experience they got working at the bank. Four Cardinal Bank student employees have been named Hispanic Youth of the Year and virtually all of them have gone on to higher education. In addition, Cardinal Bank has been particularly successful in attracting customers from the Latino community because of its welcoming environment.

South Division High School, Milwaukee Public Schools, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Wisconsin, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and DFI also collaborated on getting Cardinal Bank started.

For more information about First Lady Jessica Doyle’s visit, contact Carrie Templeton at DFI at 608-267-1719 or email her at: carrie.templeton@dfi.state.wi.us.