The Mutual Advantage

First Federal is the sole remaining mutual institution headquartered in California. A mutual association is very different from stock ownership banks in that we are mutually owned for the benefit of our community, depositors, and borrowers. Being mutually owned means we are controlled locally, so our management team and directors make business decisions that reflect the needs of our communities and help them prosper.

Metal Bison Street Painting

First Federal - Proud Sponsor of Italian Street Painting Marin

Italian Street Painting Marin is a program of EveryLife Foundation for Rare Diseases, a 501c3 nonprofit.

Scrap metal bison
Artist: Juilo Jiminez
(picture source: Italian Street Painting Marin)


Community Involvement

Volunteer Spotlight

We’re proud of the difference our employees have made to our community. We encourage and support their volunteer efforts, and recognize their contributions.

Jim Carriere has been in banking since 1985, joined First Federal in 2002, and is Senior Vice President of First Federal. Volunteering for an international disaster relief charity, ShelterBox USA, he recently exceeded $400,000 in funds raised, earning him recognition as the organization’s top all-time fundraiser. ShelterBox delivers emergency shelter and life-saving supplies to people affected by natural disasters or conflict around the world.

A member of the Rotary Club of San Rafael Harbor, he first learned of the organization through its connection to Rotary. ShelterBox is the official Project Partner of Rotary International in disaster relief. Rotarians are often the first point of contact for the ShelterBox Response Team when they arrive in a country that has been devastated by a disaster. Others, like Carriere, help in fundraising and volunteer projects.

Jim Carriere hosting a fundraiser for ShelterBox USA.
(picture source: ShelterBox USA)

Carriere served on ShelterBox USA’s Board from 2010-2018, including his service as a Board Chairman in 2017 and 2018. For the last four years, Carriere has hosted a successful fundraising event for ShelterBox called Jimbalaya, in which he treats guests to cuisine from his hometown of New Orleans. In total, the event has raised more than $100,000.

Financial Literacy

First Federal has collaborated with Operation Hope’s Banking on Our Future Program. Banking on Our Future focuses on keeping at risk youth from repeating the cycles of poverty and despair that has trapped so many in their families and communities by teaching them basic financial literacy. Banking on Our Future elevates the dignity, hope, and economic self-sufficiency of people in low-wealth and underserved communities through financial literacy. Banking on Our Future students are given the tools they need to take control of their financial futures by learning about empowerment, responsibility, and hope. Banking on Our Future is the recipient of the U.S. Treasury Department's John Sherman Award for Financial Literacy Excellence and Oprah's Angel Network’s Use Your Life Award.


Our Redwood Program

First Federal has teamed with the Redwood Forest Foundation to help preserve Northern California’s Redwoods. Each time a customer enrolls in e-statements we will pay for a redwood to be planted in Northern California.

First Federal chose to plant a coastal redwood, rather than any other tree, because they are unique to our area. The Sequoia Sempervirens, the world’s tallest tree, only occurs naturally on this narrow swath of land along the Pacific coast from Monterey County to Oregon’s southwest corner.

Over 95% of America's old-growth redwoods have been cut with devastating consequences to the forest and its inhabitants. These ancient forests contain the highest standing biomass of any forest on Earth and store incredible amounts of carbon. Coastal redwoods are among the world’s fastest growing conifers. Redwood reforestation supports a wide variety of flora and fauna, protects salmonid spawning streams and rivers, and provides habitat for endangered species.

E-statements are a secure web-based electronic statement delivery system. E-statements provides features including on-demand access to account statements and notices so you can review them wherever and whenever you like, whether at home or on the road, which saves time. By switching to e-statements, every year the average household can avoid producing 171 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions.

The Redwood Forest Foundation, Inc. (RFFI) is a private non-profit, Section 501(c)3 organization. Their vision is to establish community-based forests that provide both critical habitat for increased biodiversity and improved regional economic vitality. Their mission is to acquire, protect, restore, and manage forestlands and other related resources in the Redwood Region for the long-term benefit of the communities located there.


Community Partners

Working within our local communities is of paramount importance and we are extremely proud of the philanthropic contributions we have made and our involvement with the following Bay Area groups and organizations.
  • Bolinas Community Land Trust
  • Boys and Girls Clubs of Marin and Southern Sonoma Counties
  • Buckelew Programs
  • Canal Alliance
  • Center for Domestic Peace
  • Community Institute For Psychotherapy
  • Drawbridge
  • EAH Housing
  • East Bay Asian Development Corporation
  • Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California
  • Fairfax Chamber of Commerce
  • Fairfax Festival
  • Godmother’s Auxiliary of Timothy Murphy School
  • Italian Street Painting Marin
  • Kentfield Schools Foundation-kik
  • Lifehouse Agency
  • LITA
  • Local Initiative Support Corporation
  • Marin Center For Independent Living
  • Marin Ventures
  • Marin YMCA
  • North Bay Family Homes
  • Operation Hope
  • Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
  • Rotary Clubs of Mission San Rafael, San Rafael Harbor, and Marin Sunrise
  • Safe and Sober Grad Nights for Local High Schools
  • Saint Rita School
  • San Geronimo Valley Community Center
  • San Rafael Chamber of Commerce
  • ShelterBox USA
  • West Marin Youth Soccer League
  • YES Foundation-Ross Valley Schools

We annually evaluate our partners in the communities we serve. If you would like to discuss a partnership, please contact us at