Change over to Columbia complete

It wasn’t the sun playing tricks on the eyes of passers-by. Those blue Mt. Rainier Bank signs now read Columbia Bank.

According to Steve Moergeli, regional retail manager who oversees 10 branches in the area including Enumclaw, Buckley, Black Diamond, Bonney Lake and Sumner, the changes are cosmetic – just some final housekeeping.

“A lot of customers didn’t even notice,” he said.

Started on the Plateau in 1990 by members of the Enumclaw community, Mt. Rainier National Bank merged with Tacoma-based Columbia Bank in 2007. At that time, the bank dropped the “National” in its name and changed things internally to Columbia Bank. The final piece, changing out the last five branches – Enumclaw, Black Diamond, Buckley, Sumner and Maple Valley – came Oct. 5.

Moergeli said it will be less confusing for customers now with Columbia Bank on all branches; everyone using the same letterhead and with the operation of a single Web site.

The Bonney Lake branch made the change during the initial merger and the Auburn branch made the switch about a year ago.

Moergeli said the change presents no hardships for customers, who will find the same level of customer service.

The merge with Columbia was a good move for customers, employees and shareholders, he said.

“Columbia Bank is strong,” he said. “We’re very lucky to have moved when we did and the merge was with Columbia.”

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