FINWARD BANCORP ANNOUNCES APPOINTMENT OF ANTHONY M. PUNTILLO AS LEAD DIRECTOR

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Munster, Indiana, March 02, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Finward Bancorp (Nasdaq: FNWD) (the “Bancorp” or “Finward”), the holding company of Peoples Bank (the “Bank” or “People”), today announced that the independent directors of the board of directors of Bancorp have appointed Dr. Anthony M. Puntillo, DDS, MSD, to the newly created position of Lead Independent Director, effective February 25, 2022.

Dr. Puntillo was unanimously chosen by the Independent Directors of the Board in recognition of his leadership skills, integrity, in-depth knowledge of Bancorp and the Bank, his commitment to good governance and his role independent lead director. As Lead Independent Director, Dr. Puntillo will have various responsibilities, such as chairing all meetings at which the Executive Chairman of the Board is not present, serving as a liaison between the Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer and non-management directors, and working with the executive chairman on board meeting agendas and schedules. The lead independent director also has the power to call meetings of the independent directors.

Dr. Puntillo was elected to Finward’s Board of Directors in 2004. In addition to his role as Lead Independent Director, Dr. Puntillo will serve as Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the Board.

“Finward’s independent directors unanimously selected Tony Puntillo to serve as lead independent director in recognition of his nearly two decades of exceptional leadership on the board. During his tenure, Dr. Puntillo served on nearly every board committee, including the executive committee, and chaired our risk, governance, and strategic planning committees. He understands the need to apply best banking practices to relevant products and services that deliver value to our customers while enhancing shareholder value. In his new position, Dr. Puntillo will have the opportunity to increase his impact on Finward’s performance,” said David A. Bochnowski, Executive Chairman. Dr. Puntillo said, “I am touched and honored to have been chosen by my fellow Independent Directors for this important new position. Finward is committed to exceeding the ever-changing banking expectations of our stakeholders. It is exciting for me to take on the additional responsibilities and challenges associated with delivering on this commitment as an Independent Lead Director. »

Dr. Puntillo founded Puntillo and Crane Orthodontics, PC, a dental specialty practice with multiple locations in northwest Indiana, in 1994. He is co-owner and senior partner of the practice. He is also a director of the American Board of Orthodontics, is the past president of the Great Lakes Association of Orthodontists, and is a member of various other orthodontic associations. He is professionally active in Peoples Bank communities.

About Finward Bancorp

Finward Bancorp is an independent, locally managed financial holding company headquartered in Munster, Indiana, whose activities are primarily limited to holding the shares of Peoples Bank. Peoples Bank offers a wide range of personal, business, electronic and wealth management financial services from its 30 locations in Lake and Porter counties in northwest Indiana and the Chicagoland area. Common stock of Finward Bancorp is listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol FNWD. The ibankpeoples.com website provides information about Peoples Bank products and services and Finward Bancorp investor relations.

Forward-looking statements

This press release may contain forward-looking statements regarding Finward’s financial performance, business prospects, growth and operating strategies. For these statements, Finward claims the safe harbor protections for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The statements in this communication should be considered in conjunction with other information available about Finward, including information contained in Finward’s filings with the SEC. Forward-looking statements provide current expectations or forecasts of future events and are not guarantees of future performance. Forward-looking statements are based on management’s expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements are generally identified by words such as “anticipate”, “estimate”, “project”, “intend”, “plan”, “believe”, “will” and similar expressions in the part of any discussion of future operations. or financial performance.

Although management believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements. Risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially include: changes in asset quality and credit risk; failure to sustain revenue and earnings growth; changes in interest rates and capital markets; inflation; customer acceptance of Finward’s products and services; customers’ borrowing, repayment, investment and deposit practices; customer disintermediation; the introduction, exit, success and timing of business initiatives; competitive conditions; failure to realize cost or revenue savings or implement integration plans and other consequences associated with mergers, acquisitions and divestitures; economic conditions; and the impact, extent, and timing of changes in technology, capital management activities, and other Federal Reserve Board actions and legislative and regulatory actions and reforms. Other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements are discussed in Finward’s reports (such as Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K) filed with the SEC and available on the SEC’s website (www.sec.gov). All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements about Finward or anyone acting on its behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the above cautionary statements. Except as required by law, Finward undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect circumstances or events that occur after the date the forward-looking statement is made.

CONTACT: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT BENJAMIN BOCHNOWSKI (219) 853-7575
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