Bank News

First County Bank Honored as 2017 Healthy Workplace Employer

First County Bank was honored by The Business Council of Fairfield County in their 2017 Healthy Workplace Employer Recognition Program as a Gold category employer. The recognition program was held Friday, February 9, at the Stamford Marriott Hotel and Spa.

“First County Bank is honored to be among such a distinguished group of employers which actively work to promote employee health and well-being,” said Rey Giallongo, chairman and CEO of First County Bank. “We ‘re proud to be recognized as a Gold award recipient this year, which showcases our continued efforts to enhance our employee health and wellness initiatives.”

“What has been fascinating to witness is how companies continue to improve upon their wellness programs and are steadfast in making wellness a priority,” commented Anthony Aguanno, senior account executive, UnitedHealthcare of CT, Inc. and co-chair, The Business Council’s Wellness Roundtable. “From increasing engagement to identifying modifiable risk factors, these employers have been able to increase employee satisfaction and productivity while posting medical cost savings.”

Eric Thompson, principal, BlueBack, LLC., Vanessa Calabro, vice president, human resource manager, First County Bank, and Anthony Aguanno, senior account executive, UnitedHealthcare, and co-chair, The Business Council’s Wellness Roundtable at the 2017 Healthy Workplace Employer Recognition Event.

The 2017 Healthy Workplace Employer Recognition Program applauded the efforts of area employers who understand the competitive advantage of a healthy workforce and who have implemented a diverse range of programs to promote a healthy workplace and assist their employees to live healthier lives. The recognition program was presented by The Business Council’s Wellness Roundtable, with the generous support of First Niagara Risk Management Services Inc. and UnitedHealthcare of CT, Inc. The Healthy Workplaces Employer Recognition Program offers three categories of distinction, Platinum, Gold and Silver, awarded on the basis of program components and outcomes.

Bank News

Happy to Welcome Our New Board Member

First County Bank is pleased to welcome John C. Polera as our newest member of the Board of Directors.

First County Bank is pleased to welcome John C. Polera as our newest member of the Board of Directors.

We are pleased to announce that John C. Polera has been named to our Board of Directors. John was officially appointed to the board at the January 25th Board of Directors & Corporators meeting. “John brings substantial legal knowledge and expertise to our board. His business and leadership experience in the tax and legal profession makes him an outstanding addition to our board of directors,” said Rey Giallongo, First County Bank Chairman and CEO.

John is an attorney and president at the law Office of John C. Polera, P.C. which has offices in Stamford, CT and Garden City, NY. His areas of practice include: commercial and residential real estate, real estate development, condominium formation, commercial and residential finance work, trust and estate planning and administration, tax planning and compliance, mergers and acquisitions, and business planning.  He has been practicing as a tax and legal professional since 1986. In addition to being admitted to practice law in Connecticut and New York, John is a licensed CPA in Connecticut and has a Master of Laws Degree (LLM) in Taxation.

John has been a corporator at First County Bank since June 2015.  He is a member of the American Bar Association, the Connecticut Bar Association and the Fairfield County Bar Association. He has been practicing as a tax and legal professional since 1986. John graduated from Tulane University, University of Miami School of Law and Boston University School of Law. He currently resides in Armonk, NY, with his wife and daughters.

Bank News

Elizabeth Canizares-Brucker Joins First County Bank As Mortgage Loan Originator

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First County Bank is pleased to announce Elizabeth “Beth” Canizares-Brucker, to our Residential Mortgage Division, as a mortgage loan originator.

We are pleased to announce the recent addition of Elizabeth “Beth” Canizares-Brucker to the Bank’s Residential Lending division as a mortgage loan originator. With the hiring of Brucker, First County Bank continues to augment our talented pool of mortgage loan originators to better meet the needs of its customers.

“Beth brings a solid mortgage lending, origination and marketing background to the Bank. She has knowledge in all aspects of mortgage origination and specializes in home purchase, refinance, first time buyers and luxury home lending,” said Reyno Giallongo, First County Bank’s chairman and CEO. “We look forward to her contributions which complement and further enrich the expertise of our First County Bank Residential Mortgage Division.”

Beth Brucker works closely with a network of realtor and financial professionals throughout Connecticut. Since 2002, she has been involved in the residential mortgage industry with some of the nation’s leading lending institutions. Brucker has considerable experience in all aspects of origination and helps guide borrowers through the loan process, recommending the best solutions for each customer. She specializes in helping first time home buyers achieve home ownership as well as working with customers in the luxury home market.

Prior to joining First County Bank, Beth was a mortgage lender who knows the local market and understands customer needs. Previously, she was an international marketing professional with a top 20 IT corporation in the Fortune 500. She is actively involved in the community with the Westport Rotary Club as social chair, newsletter editor and Lobster Fest member; The Rotary Means Business as social chair; American Heart Association of CT and NY as Advisory Board member and is a member of the International Society of Lower Fairfield. Over the years, she was also an active member of the Shellfish Commission for the Town of Westport and a volunteer in many other community and national charitable organizations. She earned her B.S. in Finance and Management from Fairfield University. Beth currently resides in Wilton, CT with her family.

Bank News

Hugo Ramirez joins First County Bank as Assistant Vice President, Branch Manager

Hugo_Ramirez_FirstCountyBank 1First County Bank is pleased to announce the recent addition of Hugo Ramirez who joins the Bank’s Retail Banking Division as assistant vice president, branch manager of the 660 Main Street, Norwalk, CT branch.

“Hugo has over 15 years of retail banking experience with numerous awards. He will manage the customer relations and new business development for his branch as well as manage the branch operations.” said Reyno Giallongo, First County Bank’s chairman and CEO. “We continually look to enhance our team by recruiting talented bankers.”

As assistant vice president, branch manager, Hugo is responsible for managing branch customer service performance and cultivating relationships with community, industry and professional contacts. He is committed to helping customers and businesses select the best banking solution to achieve their goals.

Prior to joining First County Bank, Ramirez was with Patriot Bank, serving as a regional vice president. Ramirez has won numerous sales awards over the years for his outstanding sales performance in retail, wealth management, small business, cash management and insurance products.

Hugo is a resident of Stamford, CT and when not working, he enjoys time spent with his son and family. He is an active member in the community with the Chamber of Commerce in Stamford, CT, Scarsdale and Bedford, NY. Ramirez is fluent in English and Spanish.

Bank News

Introducing FirstPrize $avings

FirstPrize $avings

We are proud to announce the launch of FirstPrize $avings, a new savings account. The FirstPrize $avings account is for consumers 18 and older who are seeking a new and fun way to save! This savings account promotes savings by offering those who make deposits of $25 or greater, an opportunity to win $1,000.

If you would like to learn more about the FirstPrize $avings Account stop by your nearest First County Bank Branch or contact our CustomerFirst Center at 203.462.4400 (Mon. – Fri., 8:30am – 4:30pm).

View the Savings Account Disclosures & Official Rules Disclosures by clicking here.


Bank News

Corporator Vincent Vetrini, County TV & Appliance “65 years and no slowing down”

Vincent VetriniFirst County Bank Corporator Vincent Vetrini and his business County TV & Appliance were the featured story in the business section of the Advocate. This year County TV & Appliance is celebrating its 65th Anniversary of doing business here in Stamford. After six-decades of being a successful, local, family-owned business, Vincent and son Elio Vetrini see no end in sight. “We are a community-based store. We intend to be here forever,” Vincent stated in the article.

We congratulate Corporator Vincent Vetrini and the entire Vetrini family’s accomplishment of growing County TV & Appliance after the purchase of the store in 2003 from the Cohn family. Vincent understands the importance of local community ties as a way to build his business and strengthen his community. Appreciating and nurturing the relationships between a business and its local community is one of many reasons Vincent fits so well into the First County Bank family.



Bank News

Grand Opening of new High School Branch

We announced the official opening of a limited access Bank branch at The Academy of Information, Technology and Engineering “AITE” High School with a ribbon-cutting ceremony held September 19, 2016. AITE is a college preparatory, inter-district, magnet high school in Stamford, CT.
“First County Bank is proud to provide students with financial literacy education which is a critical life skill,” said Reyno A. Giallongo, Jr. chairman and CEO of First County Bank. “We want to help students develop financial knowledge and transferable abilities that they can apply to future endeavors.” 
Sheila Content of First County Bank is the branch manager for the AITE High School Branch where she trains AITE student-employees through an internship-like experience while they work in an actual bank branch. In addition, financial literacy curriculum is provided by First County Bank and taught in the classroom to AITE students.
The new branch aligns AITE’s motto of “Empowering students to shape the future” with First County Bank’s 165th anniversary of serving the community. First County Bank manages the AITE high school branch which is staffed by AITE students and provides banking services during the school year which are limited to current AITE students and faculty members. The purpose of this branch and classroom instruction is to educate the leaders of tomorrow, by teaching financial literacy skills and providing real-world experience, not only for those students working in the branch but those who access its services.


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Pictured (left to right): Earl Kim, Superintendent, Stamford Public Schools; Geoff Alswanger, President, Stamford Board of Education; Sheila Content, Branch Manager, First County Bank; David Martin, Mayor, City of Stamford; Reyno Giallongo, Chairman, CEO of First County Bank; Robert Granata, President, COO of First County Bank; Tina Rivera, Principal, Academy of Information Technology and Engineering; Michael Fernandes, Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Schools, Stamford Public Schools; Jeanne Lauer, Teacher, Academy of Information Technology and Engineering.


Bank News

Jagjiwan Singh joins First County Bank as Assistant Vice President, Business Development Officer

Jagjiwan SinghWe are pleased to announce the recent hiring of Jagjiwan “Singh” Singh, who joins the Bank’s Business Banking Division as assistant vice president, business development officer. First County Bank’s addition of Singh demonstrates the Bank’s commitment to further meet the needs of its commercial customers and the business community.

“Singh will be originating and growing commercial relationships for the Bank. He will contribute to the Bank’s business banking and sales team with his strong community and business relationships.” said Reyno Giallongo, First County Bank’s chairman and CEO.

Prior to joining First County Bank, Singh was branch manager at Wells Fargo Bank. Earlier, Jagjiwan was branch manager for RBS Citizens, N.A. in Stamford. He has spent most of his banking career responsible for sales and service of business and commercial customers. Before moving to Connecticut, Singh worked for Starwood Corporation where he worked with international and diplomatic clientele in New Delhi, India. Singh has over 8 years of banking and management experience.

Singh is fluent in English, Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu. He is an active member of Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji Foundation in Norwalk. He has a B.A. in Economics from the University of Connecticut, Stamford. In addition, he has extensive professional financial education. Singh is a resident of East Norwalk, CT where he lives with his wife and their two children. He enjoys spending time with his family and volunteering in the community.

Bank News

Juanita James Named as one of Savoy Magazine’s 2016 Most Influential Black Corporate Directors

juanita_jamesCongratulations to one of our Corporators, Juanita James on being named one of Savoy Magazine’s 2016 Most Influential Black Corporate Directors for the month of August. Juanita’s impressive career consists of being Chief Marketing and Communications Officer for Pitney Bowes, Inc. as well as a progressive 20-year career with Warner Bros, Inc. and Bertelsmann, Inc. Today, Juanita is the President & Chief Executive Officer of Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. Congratulations Juanita, we are proud to have you as a Corporator! Read the full article here.


Bank News

Three New Corporators Join First County Bank

First County Bank is pleased to announce the election of three new corporators: Bruce Blasnik, David Cingari and Vincent Vetrini, at the June 15, 2016 annual Board of Directors meeting. A corporator is a unique role offered to community representatives and thought-leaders as part of the Bank’s mutual charter. A First County Bank corporator promotes the mission and vision of the Bank, and supports the business community and nonprofit development.

“We are excited to welcome these three new corporators to First County Bank. They bring a wealth of business experience from diverse industries which will enrich the Bank’s operations and provide direct insights into the local business community,” said Rey Giallongo, First County Bank chairman and CEO. “We are delighted Bruce, David and Vincent have joined us and we know they have the best interests of the Bank and community in mind. We look forward to their contributions.”

The First County Bank Board of Directors recruits corporators who are successful in their business or profession, and have strong knowledge of the communities First County Bank serves. Corporators play a critical role in a mutual community bank. The role of a corporator includes: assisting the Bank in increasing its visibility and credibility in the community, advising the Bank on community and customer needs, supporting the Bank’s business development, and providing customer service feedback.

First County Bank welcomes the following to their board of corporators:

Bruce Blasnik, CPA
Bruce Blasnik is a partner in the firm and the managing partner for the Connecticut practice of PFK O’Connor Davies, a regional accounting firm with offices in Stamford, and Wethersfield CT, as well as several other offices throughout the NY-metro area. He has over 30 years of experience providing accounting, tax and advisory service to a wide range of clients and has been a partner at PKF O’Connor Davies since 2003. Blasnik manages a portfolio of commercial, middle-market clients as well as a host of not-for-profits clients. He graduated from SUNY, Binghamton and is an accredited CPA in both Connecticut and New York. Bruce and his family live in Stamford.

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David Cingari
David Cingari is the Founder and President of David’s Soundview Catering, one of the premier catering and events companies in Fairfield County and Westchester County. He founded David’s Soundview Catering in 1988 and today provides event catering as well as commissary services in a number of corporate and office settings. Chef Cingari is a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and the University of New Haven Hotel and Restaurant School. He and his company are active in the local nonprofit community. David and his family live in Stamford.


Vincent Vetrini

Vincent Vetrini
Vincent Vetrini is president and owner of County TV and Appliance in Stamford, CT a family owned appliance and electronics store serving the Fairfield and Westchester County areas since 1952. Vetrini has transformed his business into a 21st century model which includes a showroom cooking demonstration facility. He is known to provide exceptional service to both retail and wholesale clients. Vetrini graduated from Lehman College in New York City. He has been recognized as a Grand Marshall in the East Chester, NY Columbus Day parade, is active in Youth Soccer and is involved with various nonprofits in Stamford and Norwalk. Vincent and his family reside in Scarsdale.