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WIU Ag Department Chair Bill Bailey and Ray Bunch
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Alum, CNB VP Receives Statewide Award

August 25, 2006

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MACOMB, IL – For Western Illinois University alumnus Ray Bunch, one good turn deserves another.

Bunch, a 1979 Western Illinois University agriculture graduate and first vice president of Citizens National Bank in Macomb, recently received the Illinois Finance Authority’s inaugural Outstanding Ag Lender Award, which included a $500 cash award that he promptly gave back to his alma mater’s agriculture department.

Bunch has been an agriculture lender for more than 23 years (17 with Citizens National Bank). In addition to his full-time job, over the years he has mentored agriculture students and taught agriculture finance courses at Western. Bunch also serves as a guest lecturer in various agriculture classes at Western each year, promoting career possibilities in banking.

“We are so pleased with Ray’s continued contributions to Western and to the agriculture department,” said William Bailey, WIU agriculture chair. “Our alumni are an integral part of our department, often providing internship opportunities and mentoring to our students. Ray is an example of a Western graduate who has remained committed to his alma mater throughout the years. We appreciate his generosity and loyalty.”

Bunch has served as a board member and officer of local economic development groups, and volunteers his time to serve his community through western Illinois-area civic, church and youth organizations.

The Illinois Finance Authority Outstanding Ag Lender Award was created to recognize community ag lenders who display and promote the agriculture industry throughout their community and banking initiatives in Illinois.

Posted By: Darcie Shinberger (
Office of University Communications & Marketing