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Christa Steele, the President and CEO of Mechanics Bank (MCHB), Interviews with The Wall Street Transcript

67 WALL STREET, New York - July 7, 2014 - The Wall Street Transcript has just published its Banking Review 2014 Report offering a timely review of the sector to serious investors and industry executives. This special feature contains expert industry commentary through in-depth interviews with public company CEOs and Equity Analysts. The full issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.

Topics covered: Banking Review 2014

Companies include: Mechanics Bank (MCHB) and many more.

In the following excerpt from the Banking Review 2014 Report, the President and CEO of Mechanics Bank (MCHB) discusses company strategy and the outlook for this vital industry:

TWST: The bank has a very long history. Can you please start by giving us a little bit of that history and a quick overview of the Bank?

Ms. Steele: Banks are measured, amongst other key indicators, by asset size. Mechanics Bank was founded in 1905, has 33 offices today and has approximately $3.3 billion in assets. Our two traditional business lines are consumer and corporate banking, all of which are in Northern California. Mechanics Bank has since become the icon of our community banking industry.

It all started when the founder of our great company, Mr. Downer, earned the trust and faith of the local rail workers in Richmond. He would gather up their payroll checks and travel miles into town to cash their checks at the local bank and return with a bag full of cash to the rail yard. Over time, he realized that what these rail workers really needed was a bank nearby that was willing to cash their checks. This is how it all began. If you think about the time since then, through the Great Depression, while our country certainly had difficulty, the bank withstood the test of time, always placing our clients' needs first. This has really been the motto for us, and it is one that we will carry forward for the next 108 years. We pride ourselves as truly being a community bank and really putting the needs of the clients first.

TWST: You are relatively new to the bank. What are your priorities for this year for the Bank?

Ms. Steele: My main priority this year is getting to know the staff and really getting to know our clients. From there, then, it's establishing the key objectives for the long-term viability and sustainability of the organization. The only way to do that is to roll up my sleeves and dig in the trenches and understand what has run really well, what's been a true success, and what needs to be retooled or enhanced to provide that continued high-touch, high service to our clients.

TWST: Within that, where do you see your largest challenges?

For more of this interview and many others visit the Wall Street Transcript - a unique service for investors and industry researchers - providing fresh commentary and insight through verbatim interviews with CEOs, portfolio managers and research analysts. This special issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.