Features

Attorney’s skill helps Wisconsin town reimagine itself

In 1993, Uniroyal Goodrich Tire Company announced it would close its Eau Claire, Wis., factory, costing the west central Wisconsin community 1,300 jobs. Not long after, SSI, a supercomputer startup bankrolled by IBM that was expected to add 1,000 tech jobs to Eau Claire, failed instead. It was a one-two punch that hobbled the traditionally blue-collar community of 65,000 just as Jeff Halloin was moving his family, including two-year-old triplets, back to town. [Continue]

Branch-free bank boosts bottom line

Executives of First Internet Bank, Indianapolis, told investors in late January that the bank posted record earnings in 2018, particularly in commercial and consumer loans and its specialty lending areas, including single tenant lease financing, public finance, healthcare finance, and horse trailer and recreational vehicle lending. [Continue]

Iowa engineer helps build a better banking board

Mark Guetzko’s career path will be familiar to many community bankers. He grew up in a construction family in Manchester, Iowa, and started his post-college life by leaving the area and experiencing the wider world as a young engineer, first in Colorado and then in southern California. A combination of family circumstances led Guetzko back to the Midwest [Continue]

Trailblazer gives edge to Minnesota community bank

Audrey Johnson, longtime outside director at New Market Bank in Elko New Market, Minn., knows a thing or two about banking, and it’s knowledge borne of her time sitting across the desk from her banker. Though she didn’t have an official title at the real estate management company headed by her husband, Johnson was always actively involved in the finances of the family business. [Continue]

Northern MN banker reflects on exurban Minneapolis acquisition

Fifteen years ago, Grand Rapids State Bank crossed the $250 million in asset mark to become the 40th largest bank in Minnesota. Around that time, Noah Wilcox, president, CEO and chair of the bank and its holding company, Wilcox Bancshares, gathered his board for strategic visioning. He anticipated ongoing industry consolidation and wondered how GRSB would grow — or what might happen if it did not. [Continue]