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Cumberland native, 22, credited with zapping Bank of America’s debit fees

November 2, 2011

Turns out that Molly Katchpole, the young Washington, D.C., resident credited with zapping Bank of America’s unpopular debit fee plan, is a native of Cumberland. (Of course, the adverse publicity for BoA, and the reluctance of other banks to charge similar fees, were also significant factors in the fee pull-back earlier this week). Anyway, Katchpole’s getting some glowing press, as evidenced by this report in The Fiscal Times:

She’s 22, doesn’t have a full-time job, and couldn’t afford the $60 annual fee that Bank of America wanted to charge its debit-card customers who didn’t hold BofA mortgages or have deposits of $20,000 or more in the bank – so she started a revolution.

On Tuesday, after collecting more than 300,000 signatures from an online campaign last month that went viral, Molly Katchpole, a recent graduate of Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, declared victory when BofA scrapped plans to charge a $5 monthly debit-card fee.

“It’s overwhelming. It’s very exciting,” Katchpole told The Fiscal Times about the reversal she helped engineer. “I drew up a petition and more than 300,000 people signed it – it wasn’t just me who did this. I want to stress that. It was the people who signed it and passed it around to their friends and family and took the time to post it to Facebook and write emails.”

If you want to follow Molly on Twitter, here’s her feed. Here’s a bit more from the preceding article:

Katchpole works as a nanny and does freelance work for a political P.R. firm in Washington, D.C., where she’s lived since this summer. The Rhode Island native graduated with a degree in art and architectural history, and was politically active with the College Democrats.

“I just thought it was really disgusting how they [the Bank of America] went ahead with the fee, especially now, at the beginning of all the Occupy Wall Street protests, when people are clearly angry all across the country,” she said. “And they didn’t respond to the petition until almost two weeks later. Clearly, they were not expecting any outcry. I’m glad that they decided to [change course].”

It would be “my biggest dream,” added Katchpole, “for other people in America to stop being passive if they hear something that they’re upset about, to speak out about it and try to do something.” She also says she wishes the candidates running for the highest office in the land would talk about everyday issues like this during the presidential debates. “They’re not ever really responding to things that are going on in the news. And I think something like this would be an interesting thing for them to debate. Or the Occupy movement. They haven’t. I think politicians need to start acknowledging this, or acting like it actually counts and matters to them.”

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Mister Guy permalink
    November 3, 2011 12:33 am

    This kind of bonehead decision by Bank of America could only be made by a tone deaf $2+ Trillion company that thought that they were so big that they could literally come up with whatever ridiculous policy that they could think of to simply make more money off their depositors. It’s one of the better, more recent examples of sheer corporate greed that people seem to finally be waking up to. Congrats to Miss Katchpole!


  1. Rhode Island Tip Sheet: Things other than pensions « On Politics
  2. Local Hero Molly Katchpole Takes On Bank Of America | Providence Daily Dose

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