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September 04 2013

Popular Community Bank Foundation Contributes $90,000 to Operation HOPE to Empower Youth in Los Angeles Through Financial Literacy

ANAHEIM, CA – September 5, 2013 - Popular Community Bank Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Popular Community Bank, has distributed $90,000 to financial dignity nonprofit Operation HOPE, Inc. (HOPE) to support the youth empowerment programs, HOPE Business In A Box (HBIAB), and Banking on Our Future (BOOF) in Los Angeles over the next two years.

This contribution towards Operation HOPE’s America 2020 Project will expand HBIAB to two schools per year in the Los Angeles Unified School District and empower 500 youth per year to learn the basics of banking and how to take control of their financial future through Banking on Our Future.

Popular Community Bank’s contribution is part of the HOPE’s Clinton Global Initiatives Commitment, America 2020, to empower one million youth through HOPE Business in a Box and increase role models from 5% to 20% in nationwide the year 2020.

“Since opening our first branch in Los Angeles in 1975, Popular Community Bank has been committed to improving the Southern California communities where we do business,” said Vernon Aguirre, Popular Community Bank California Region Executive, and member of the Operation HOPE Southwestern Board of Directors since 2004. “We have been involved with Operation HOPE for more than 20 years and fully support its ‘silver rights’ mission and we are proud of the accomplishments we have achieved together.” 

Students participating in HBIAB receive financial dignity and entrepreneurial education, opportunities to work with business role models and access to grants that enable them to launch their own small businesses.

“We are thrilled to partner with Popular Community Bank on America 2020 and appreciate their continuous support of our youth empowerment initiatives,” said HOPE’s Global Youth Empowerment Group President and New York Market CEO Mary Hagerty Ehrsam. “Through the HOPE Business in a Box we believe that we can channel youth’s economic energy and connect aspiration to education and most importantly, bring positive role models into their lives.” 

Banking on Our Future is HOPE’s premier financial education program for youth in underserved communities, providing year-round financial education for youth ages 9-18 at no cost to school districts. It is a winner of the Oprah’s Angel Network Award and the U.S. Treasury Department’s John Sherman Award for Financial Literacy Excellence. Since being introduced into classrooms in 1996, more than 720,000 students have been educated through the program.

About Popular Community Bank Foundation

The Popular Community Bank Foundation was established in 2004 with the mission of strengthening the social and economic well being of the communities Popular Community Bank serves. The Foundation is a wholly employee-funded philanthropic organization that has invested more than $2 million in non-profit organizations with programs focusing on education and community/economic development. The Foundation grants are maximized with the time and effort of Popular Community Bank employee volunteers.

About Popular Community Bank

Founded in 1893, Popular, Inc. is the leading banking institution by both assets and deposits in Puerto Rico, and the 36th largest in the U.S. by deposits. In the United States, Popular has established a community-banking franchise providing a broad range of financial services and products with 91 branches in New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Florida and California.

Services of Popular are available at branches and online at For customers seeking more information, call 1-800-377-0800 or email Find out about the community service of Popular Community Bank on Facebook at

* Popular Community Bank is the assumed business name of Banco Popular North America.

About Operation HOPE

HOPE was founded in 1992 in Los Angeles. Since its inception, HOPE has served more than 2 million individuals, directing more than $1.5 billion in private capital to America’s low-wealth communities, and currently serving more than 273 U.S. cities, as well as South Africa, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, and most recently, the United Arab Emirates. For more information visit

Media Contacts:
For Operation HOPE: Sherry T. John
For Popular Community Bank: Mark Rose

Pictured: Popular Community Bank Chief Operating Officer Manuel Chinea (left) and Regional Executive Vernon Aguirre (right) present $90,000 to Operation HOPE President William “Bill” Walbrecher (center)