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Second Federal under new ownership

Second Federal Savings & Loan has stood at 26th and Pulaski in Little Village on the Southwest Side for more than a hundred years. It plays an important role in the community’s Mexican population, including providing loans to those who are considered undocumented.

Last week, Second Federal failed and its deposits are now part of suburban-based Wintrust Financial.

That has Michael Rodriguez concerned.

Rodriguez heads Enlace, a neighborhood organization in Little Village.

“We are concerned about Second Federal changing hands and Wintrust’s commitment. We don’t know them,” Rodriguez told WBEZ. “We want to know what their commitment is in working with the community and the specific needs of the community."

Antonio Guillen, the new branch president, says customers won’t see many changes, with most personnel and services remaining in place under Wintrust’s Hinsdale Bank and Trust division.

“We’ve always been community-based and oriented, and we’re excited about the great things that we can do for these communities,” Guillen said.

However, Guillen said  the past practice of offering loans to undocumented immigrants is still under review.

“It’s a different credit environment, as you know,” Guillen said. “Today I’m not going to tell you that we’re going to do them and then not do them. It’s not something that’s anything that’s concluded.”

Wintrust purchased Second Federal’s $176 million in deposits, but loans and other assets — some $199 million worth — are being handled by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

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