Minnesota banks sponsors film screening

Cattail Bancshares, Inc., the holding company for Harvest Bank, Atwater, Minn., and Citizens State Bank of Waverly, Minn., sponsored a private screening of the movie “Abacus: Small Enough to Jail” at the Aug. 10-12 annual convention of the Independent Community Bankers of Minnesota. The showing took place on Aug. 11.

Robert Meyerson is chairman of Cattail Bancshares, which is located in Atwater. Robert, his wife Sue and their daughter Ella, first saw the movie at a film festival several months ago. Robert said he was so moved by the story that he wanted other community bankers to see the film, which ran in commercial theaters only for a short time.

The film chronicles the story of the Sung family, which owns the Abacus Federal Savings of Chinatown, New York City. The bank, accused of mortgage fraud by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr., was the only U.S. bank to face criminal charges in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. The family spent the next five years and $10 million defending itself. Noted documentarian Steve James directed the film.

Many of the bankers who attended the screening said they could empathize with the members of the Sung family.

Last spring, the Independent Community Bankers of America, hosted members of the Sung family at its annual Washington, D.C., Capital Summit, which attracted more than 1,000 bankers.