CHITCHAT CORNER

Pre-target or re-target

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CHANGES taking place at the beginning of a year can be new and innovative or they can be short-lived, allowing old things and habits to re-surface. In the world of digital marketing this is known as re-targeting which is really re-surfacing of something already used or pre-targeting or focusing in on what is best for you and going for it.

Out with the old and in with the new, major companies across the world have made room in their budget to “bring it on” with digital advertising.

PRE-TARGETING her personal life this year is Kilgoreite Mary Lynn Latham, who will be retiring from Citizens National Bank (formerly Kilgore National Bank) this month.

Mary Lynn is a native Kilgoreite having been born to the parents of Harry A. Leroy and Mary Lois Reid. She attended school and a nursing program in Kilgore and with the exception of sixteen months of residency in Arizona has spent her entire life centered in the town she loves and worked.

She will easily tell you it was her prayer life that helped her make the decision to step out of the nursing field after nine years where she worked labor delivery and post-partum and into the field of banking.

“I knew nothing about banking when I accepted my first job at Kilgore First National Bank,” said Mary Lynn. “That was December 11, 1979. Theo Andrews was my immediate supervisor and she was kind enough to explain banking procedures to me over and over until the light came on. From that point on, I knew what I was doing,” she laughed. “But, bless her heart for sticking with me.”

“I started in the bookkeeping department and I loved it,” she said. “Bookkeeping is totally different at a bank than it is on the outside world,” she added. A health issue became a factor with her standing for a length of time and eventually Mary Lynn moved to fill another position in the customer service department.

Nine months later, Kilgore First National sold to First Commercial Corporation which later became Regions Bank. Mary Lynn moved to City National Bank and in June 25, 2007 began working for Kilgore National Bank which has recently sold to Citizens National Bank.

In appreciation of automation and digital, Mary Lynn can easily tell you about the early days of having to hand file checks in accordance to account number and matching signatures and of the horror of being short a check on statement day. All was done by hand and individually. Statements could not be mailed without all checks accounted for and folded within the statements.

“I learned customers came to the bank to socialize,” said Mary Lynn. “Some came every day as part of their routine whether they had banking business to attend to or not. I always had their balance ready for them. One day, one of our men customers came in to socialize and before he left I heard him say, “I’m going back here to talk to the lady with no legs,” she laughed. “All this time, he had never seen me except from the waist up. I was behind the counter and he didn’t really know if I had legs or not! So, I became the lady with no legs!”

“Throughout my banking career, when someone came to my desk, I always wanted to be able to handle the job and help them the best I could,” said Mary Lynn. “When I went to work at Kilgore National Bank, it was literally a feeling of going home,” she said. “I will miss the people I work with a great deal. You establish a work family and spend more time with them than you do your actual family,” she said.

“It is now time to trade hats and be a stay at home wife. Robert is ready for supper to be on the table when he gets home,” she laughed. “We are going to start a remodeling project and some things I can’t do and hold down a full time job.”

Robert and Mary Lynne will celebrate their 34th anniversary this year and their combined family includes five children, 15 grandchildren; 14 living and 6 great grandchildren.

Not being able to step entirely out of the public eye, you will still see her at a part time job at Rader Funeral Home where she has been a part time Visitation Hostess since 2006.

Please join the staff and friends at Citizens National Bank for Mary Lynn’s retirement reception from 3-5 p.m. on Thursday, January 12.

AS SEEN in the East Texas Writer’s Association Newsletter – Name five problems with social media. Oops, that gets us back to re-targeting and another time. Their next meeting will be held on January 13, beginning at 6 p.m. at Casa Ole Restaurant located at 280 N. Spur 63, Longview, Tx.

MAY HIS LOVE AND LAUGHTER fill your hearts and your homes throughout the week. In the meantime, we may be reached at chitchatlinda@aol.com or 903-984-2593.

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