Independence Bank awards annual scholarships; 10 local students receive more than $50k total

May 24, 2022 | 12:09 am

Updated May 23, 2022 | 8:44 pm

File photo by AP Imagery

Independence Bank recently awarded $158,000 in scholarships to students across a dozen area counties. Of that, more than $50,000 went to 10 students across Daviess County schools — including one $15,000 scholarship and one worth $10,000. 


Ashley Wahler attended Daviess County High School and was awarded the Charles A. Reid Scholarship worth $15,000. It is the original scholarship that started the Independence Bank program in 2001 and is given in honor of Charles A Reid, former bank founder, CEO, and president.

Will Roberts attended Owensboro Innovation Academy and was awarded the Guy Reisz Memorial Scholarship worth $10,000. Reisz served as an Independence Bank board of director, and this scholarship was intended for a student attending Kentucky Wesleyan College. 

The CEO scholarship, worth $5,000 each, was presented to DCHS graduate Lily Robbins and Owensboro Catholic High School graduates Olivia Hayden and Luke Scales. 

Sloan Anderson graduated from Apollo High School and was awarded the Lanham Family Scholarship worth $3,000. This scholarship — funded by John and Wanda Lanham, Tony and Sandy Lanham, and Kenny and Debbie Lanham — is intended for a student pursuing a business major.

Luke Evans graduated from OCHS and received the Ernie & Martine Davis scholarship worth $3,000. Ernie Davis has been a member of the bank’s Board of Directors for 22 years.

Four local students received Community Board scholarships. Evans received a $2,000 scholarship. Lexy Ferguson (AHS), JoJo Gesser (Owensboro High School), and Will Roberts (OIA) received scholarships worth $1,000 each.

The Independence Bank Scholarship Program started in 2001 as a dream of the late Charles A. Reid, founding partner and father of current CEO, Chris Reid. Before his passing, Charles requested that the scholarship program be built to provide an opportunity for deserving high school students in need to have the opportunity to receive a college education. 

“It was his dream to be able to provide students like himself who wanted to make the world a better place with the opportunity to get a college education, no matter their circumstances,” Chris said. “And I know if he were here today, he would be so proud of what our scholarship program has accomplished.” 

The first scholarship given was in the amount of $10,000. Since then, more than $1.5 million has been awarded to high school seniors to help cushion the cost of college education expenses. Applicants are reviewed based on a submitted essay, high school grades, ACT scores, financial need, extracurricular activities, community involvement and personal interviews. 

The Independence Bank Scholarship program consists of more than 50 scholarships that applicants are eligible to receive. Many of the categories honor the Independence Bank founding partners and their families. 

“As a Bank, we have never just been about the transaction, rather always the relationship,” said Jacob Reid, Independence Bank President. “We’re committed to building community. Promoting connection has guided how we do business today.”

May 24, 2022 | 12:09 am

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