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Board Spotlight - Todd Tilson

Todd Tilson Eastern Savings Bank

Mr. Todd Tilson

You became a Board Member at Eastern Savings Bank in June, 2020. Over the last 2 years, what has been the most rewarding part of this position?
Learning how Eastern Savings Bank has managed to thrive in very difficult positions, about the banking industry in general, and seeing all of the positive impacts that the bank has had on the community and its associates.

Share a favorite “community” memory (for example a store or restaurant or place you have fond memories of growing up).
As a kid, I loved going to the Windy Valley Farms ice cream stand, which was well known for its pony rides and birthday parties for children. It is now where the Green Spring Station commercial office complex stands, which is actually where I work!

What do you love about our community and why?
I love the connectivity, the closeness, and the relationships that I’ve maintained for so long. For the community at large, I am still friends with people that I went to grade school with, and everyone teases that Baltimore communities can be called “Smalltimore,” but there is some real truth behind that. A very large part of my business has been built on the relationships that have spanned years and years of being part of the community, knowing people who know other people, and the small town connectivity.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever heard?
It’s one of my favorite quotes from Warren Buffett: “It takes a lifetime to build your reputation and it takes 20 minutes to mess it up.”

Eastern Savings Bank is an important part of your Uncle, Harold Goldsmith’s legacy. Describe Eastern Savings Bank in your own words, and what it means to you.
My Uncle Harold was a tremendous mentor, like a second father, to me. I grew up watching him grow the bank, so it always felt close to me on a personal level, and I was always very curious about the bank on a professional level. When I was 16, I ended up having a summer job at the bank’s Hunt Valley office. I worked in the real estate escrow dept. where they would handle the escrow payments for real estate taxes and insurance, reconciling payments, paying tax bills, etc. It gave me a broader introduction to the banking and business environment, something which I had never been exposed to before.

Describe a personal or professional challenge you have had to tackle and how you overcame it.
On a professional level, it was probably leaving my job as a commercial real estate appraiser at a bank and branching out on my own (making the leap of leaving a steady paycheck to uncertainty).

What are you most proud of (your life’s biggest achievements)?
My proudest accomplishments are my family. I have 2 daughters, 24 and 26 years old, and I’ve been married for 32 years. On a professional level, I’d like to think that I’ve made a difference both for my family and for the community at large. I have always tried to set a strong example in the business world, and hopefully I have left an impact that will live beyond my years.

What have you observed here at Eastern Savings Bank thus far, and where do you see the Bank in five, even ten years from now?
I’m constantly amazed at the culture of the bank, especially the dedication that everyone has toward the common goal. The bank certainly has had its challenges throughout the years and I’m amazed at everyone’s perseverance. I see the bank continually innovating, pivoting, and always striving to be an asset to the community.

Are there any nonprofits that you serve or volunteer with?
For 15 years, I was a Board Member at CHAI (Comprehensive Housing Assistance, Inc.), where I also served as Chairman of the Board for 2 years (2014-2016). CHAI is an agency of the The Associated: Jewish Federation of Baltimore and their niche is providing affordable housing and supporting neighborhoods in the Northwest Baltimore corridor. You can find out more about them at: chaibaltimore.org