GNADENHUTTEN -- The First National Bank of Dennison reported total assets at the end of 2012 of about $207 million, up from $195 the previous year.

"We had a satisfactory year in 2012," First National Bank of Dennison President Blair Hillyer said. "Banks are usually late in feeling the effects of recessions and we're also late in the recovery process. We are seeing some signs of improving credit quality in our markets, but the unemployment number is still too high. We have plenty of money to loan to credit-worthy borrowers and it would be wise to consider borrowing now before interest rates begin to rise."

Hillyer said passage of the Dodd-Frank bill by Congress recently presents significant challenges to community banks.

'The law was passed to reel in abuses on Wall Street. Unfortunately, many of the regulations that will come out of that law will be disastrous for community banks, like us. We are hopeful that some common sense will be inserted into the regulations prior to their final implementation," Hillyer said.

The bank and its customers are feeling the effects of the oil and gas explosion in eastern Ohio.

Deposits of oil and gas signing bonus/royalty checks are being deposited by customers, Hillyer said.

The First National Bank of Dennison earned a 5-Star rating from Bauerfinancial, Inc.

Only 10 percent of the nation's banks can claim that distinction.

Also, the bank was recently named one of the top Community Banks in America.

The First National Bank of Dennison is a locally-owned community bank with offices in Dennison, Dover, Gnadenhutten and two locations in New Philadelphia.

The bank can also be found on the Internet at