Rising Stars 2022: Emily Boardman

If there’s a thread that runs through Emily Boardman’s banking career, it’s growth. She left the public accounting field to join Crossroads Bank in Wabash, Ind., because she wanted to bring her growing family back to her hometown. In her 15 years in banking, she has taken opportunities to develop and stretch her skills to fit into ever bigger and different roles. Yet, Boardman isn’t focused only on her own growth. She makes a point of fostering the professional development of others, too.  [Continue]

Colorado bank commits resources to amplify diversity

Lakewood, Colo.-based FirstBank has, for decades, sought customers and recruited employees in order to build a business that reflected the diversity of its markets. In an effort to expand this vision, it created a Multicultural Banking Center, which opened in March 2020, just three weeks before pandemic-related shutdowns.  [Continue]

How will farmers deal with climate change and other challenges?

As they near the end of 2021, many community ag bankers say their farm clients are feeling optimistic, but the industry isn’t entirely sunny. Farmers have long served as stewards of the natural world, and as climate change becomes a more pressing topic, they wrestle with how to respond. That’s not their only challenge, as they also face down consolidation, rising real estate prices, rate pressure, among other issues. [Continue]

Commodity prices are good now but what about 2022?

Commodity prices — from corn to dairy — look favorable, but as farmers turn their attention to what next year holds, more than a few ag bankers see storm clouds ahead. Input costs are rising, and pandemic-era government programs are drawing to a close. Tight labor markets and other region challenges also complicate the outlook on 2022. [Continue]

Outlook brightens for farmers, less so for ag lenders

As they near the end of 2021, many community ag bankers say their farm clients are feeling optimistic. Commodity prices — from corn to dairy — look favorable. Low interest rates are driving the price of farmland in some areas, but expansion is an obstacle in others. Some of the sunnier projections for the coming year are partially offset by higher costs for feed, fertilizer and fuel. Farmers are hedging by locking in fertilizer prices early, and doing so with help from banks. [Continue]

Helping others is journey and destination for CCB

Chickasaw Community Bank has been able to fold its support of the larger community into its goals while keeping an eye to the bottom line. When talking about their work, leadership and staff frequently call CCB mission-driven. “As part of our mission, we’re really committed to our local community and our community at large,” said CEO T.W. Shannon. [Continue]

Chickasaw Community Bank leverages HUD expertise as it diversifies

In 2017, when former Oklahoma state legislator T.W. Shannon took a leadership role at Bank2, one of just a few Native American-owned banks in the United States, his industry experience was limited, the bank had a small footprint, and it had an uninspiring name. So much has changed since then. Bank2 is now Chickasaw Community Bank, a change made in January of 2020 in a nod to its origins and ownership by the Chickasaw Nation. Shannon, now CEO, is driving a notable transformation. [Continue]

Where is the industry headed in 2021?

Rows of soy plants in a field

From weather disasters and a pandemic to an increased use of technology that is helping farmers control their own destinies, ag bankers in central states experienced a lot in 2020. Now they look ahead to what 2021 holds, expecting more of the same challenges and uncertainty. [Continue]

Low commodity prices continue to haunt ag

The year began with some optimism on grain prices and improved trade conditions with China, Canada, Mexico and other countries. Then COVID-19 hit in March and everything changed. Commodity prices for crops and livestock dropped rapidly; ag banking experts from across the region weigh in on the local impact. [Continue]