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First International Bank breaks ground

By Staff | Jun 17, 2016

A celebration was underway Thursday afternoon as First International Bank & Trust hosted a groundbreaking ceremony.

First International Bank and Trust officially broke ground on Thursday, June 16, during a ceremony and cookout for community members. This is an exciting time in Rugby, as new developments are helping to enhance the town further. The bank’s new building is a part of that enhancement.

“It will be a modern cabin theme. We knew the location on Highway 2 would be a highly visible location and wanted to make sure our building draws attention, plus we want the community of Rugby to know that we are committed for the long term,” Peter Stenehjem, First International’s chief retail banking officer, said.

The building is expected to be completed within one year, a project that has cost over $6 million alone in building expenses. Not only does the bank plan to bring attention and money to Rugby, but its members also plan to be engaged in the community.

“We plan to be an active participant in the community,” Stenehjem said. “This includes local sponsorships and volunteering, as well as hosting events in our new gallery space.”

The gallery space will be a large, open room with tall ceilings and an oversized fireplace where the community can gather for various events. First International Bank said it is important that the community knows its commitment and excitement to be a part of Rugby. “We hope the community will embrace us as a community partner. We encourage our staff to be active participants and volunteers. The bank intends to sponsor local events, the schools and other community events,” Stenehjem said.

Rugby was chosen for the bank’s new location because of the proximity to its other locations in Harvey, Fessenden and Minot. Also, the staffing opportunity played a role in the decision. Tanner Johnson, the Rugby location’s president, and his team were a big part of the reason the bank decided to settle in Rugby.

The building will not only be a bank, but a tenant space will be available for rent inside as well. The bank is already planning more community events, including customer appreciation events, barbeques and a grand opening ceremony once the building is completed.

“We have a strong heritage and track record in all the communities we serve to be active and supportive in helping to drive the local economy and helping our customers’ dreams come true one by one,” Mark Friedt, First International’s rural market president, said.

First International Bank and Trust encourages all community members to stop by their fully operational temporary facility to meet the staff and get to know the company.

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