Diverse event attendees listening to a presentation and taking notes

first financial bank and freedom center launch financial literacy series

Cincinnati, OH – July 3, 2021 – First Financial Bank (Nasdaq: FFBC) and the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center have launched a financial literacy series to address wealth disparity by increasing the level of financial education in the community. Individual First Financial bankers will teach the series, providing a personal touch for the instruction. The series is available to the public at no charge.

“Financial freedom in our communities benefits us all, which is why we’re so eager to share expertise directly from our bankers with the communities we serve,” said Roddell McCullough, director of community development for First Financial Bank. “Offering hands-on financial education is a further demonstration of our strategic intent to be woven into the communities we serve.”

The series, called “Your Money, Own It,” includes modules on basic finances, debt management, budgeting, retirement and credit scores and reporting. Registration for virtual course instruction is now open at bankatfirst.com. In-person instruction will begin later this summer. Sites for in-person instruction will include the Freedom Center, First Financial’s 4th & Vine Innovation Center, the First Financial Walnut Hills Banking Center, and eventually other banking centers throughout First Financial’s footprint.

“Growth in personal finance is an important step toward securing our financial freedom and addressing wealth disparity in our community,” said Woody Keown Jr., president & COO of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. “We appreciate First Financial stepping up to address this need in the community with its commitment of time and expertise.”

“Your Money, Own It” is an extension of First Financial’s existing financial education programs, which help people achieve financial stability and reach their financial goals. The programming provides important lessons that people may be missing from schools or other education.

Earlier this year, First Financial also announced that it is supporting ongoing Freedom Center programming around implicit bias – the attitudes and stereotypes that unconsciously affect our thinking, actions and decisions. These biases can have implications in business, education and everyday life, hampering the development of inclusive companies, schools and communities. Implicit bias training is available as part of the museum experience and as paid training. First Financial is including Freedom Center implicit bias training programs for First Financial associates as part of its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Program.

About First Financial Bancorp.

First Financial Bancorp. is a Cincinnati, Ohio based bank holding company. As of March 31, 2021, the Company had $16.2 billion in assets, $9.9 billion in loans, $12.6 billion in deposits and $2.3 billion in shareholders' equity. The Company's subsidiary, First Financial Bank, founded in 1863, provides banking and financial services products through its six lines of business: Commercial, Retail Banking, Investment Commercial Real Estate, Mortgage Banking, Commercial Finance and Wealth Management. These business units provide traditional banking services to business and retail clients. Wealth Management provides wealth planning, portfolio management, trust and estate, brokerage and retirement plan services and had approximately $3.1 billion in assets under management as of March 31, 2021. The Company operated 143 full service banking centers as of March 31, 2021, primarily in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky and Illinois, while the Commercial Finance business lends into targeted industry verticals on a nationwide basis. Additional information about the Company, including its products, services and banking locations, is available at www.bankatfirst.com.

About the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center opened in August 2004 on the banks of the Ohio River in downtown Cincinnati, Ohio. Since then, more than 1.3 million people have visited its permanent and changing exhibits and public programs, inspiring everyone to take courageous steps for freedom. Two million people have utilized educational resources online at freedomcenter.org, working to connect the lessons of the Underground Railroad to inform and inspire today’s global and local fight for freedom. Partnerships include Historians Against Slavery, Polaris Project, Free the Slaves, US Department of State and International Justice Mission. In 2014, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center launched a new online resource in the fight against modern slavery, endslaverynow.org.


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