Join Summit Bank in Celebrating Our
The following letter is a message of reflection and thanks from our CEO, Wade Edmundson.
Our board and staff are very proud of our bank reaching its ten year anniversary and pause to reflect on how far we have come. Beginning our life, we employed eight people which meant when a person was out, we lost thirteen percent of our workforce. We now employ 44 highly capable and motivated professionals who every day proactively satisfy client needs.
We now have over 80 outstanding shareholders who live and work in Oklahoma, and as important as local ownership is to the success of the Bank, so are local decisions. Each of our locations are capably led by experienced leaders who have the judgment and authority to respond quickly.
Staying true to our business and professional niche has enabled us to reach $220 million in assets with strong capital, liquidity, loan quality and earnings. As we prepare to enter our second decade we are confident of our ability to dramatically grow our market share, attract the best talent, generate attractive returns for our shareholders and be a really great bank for our clients.
Thank you for your business and support,
CEO, Summit Bank
Learn a little about Summit Bank's history - with CEO Wade Edmundson
David Littlefield led organizers Jack Allen, Kent Harrell and me in an afternoon session to name the bank. After much work we came up with the name, Summit Bank and the tag line, “The Bank of Commerce”. We subsequently changed it to “Building Financial Relationships” after a session with Jack Allen discussing the importance of having the relationship of being a trusted advisor.
One of the challenges of establishing a new institution was selecting a logo. Danny Sadler freelanced the effort for us and came up with three alternatives, the first two of which were very cool. The third was “Sum It Bank 1 + 1 = 3”. I thought he was serious and wondered about Danny, but he later told me it was a joke.
The bank was born out of the days of 9/11. We obtained approval of the charter and investor offering circular on 9/11/2001. I was meeting for breakfast with future investor, Griff Jones, at BBD II and after 8am walked out of the restaurant and heard about the first plane flying into the World Trade Center. There was so much fear surrounding those events and the days and weeks following that we decided to postpone investor calls. Ultimately, we started making those contacts and even though it took much longer than it otherwise would have, we still raised the targeted amount.
Meanwhile back at the ranch, one of the first employees of the bank, Chris Creider, who predated the founding of the bank, was helping establish the loan administration functions along with other bank functions and getting us established with our back officer provider, Jack Henry and Associates. Our founding CFO also predated the bank formation and established the operational, financial and administrative functions. We are grateful to the organizers of the bank: Jack Allen, Kent Harrell, John Massey, John Neas, and John Williams, for joining me in writing the checks to fund this early work along with our legal and offering costs.
The first days and months were tough and with an initial employee base of eight, when someone was absent, we were down more than 10 percent of our workforce. We worked late and started early trying to stabilize operations. One of the worst times I remember was when one of our clients, Patricia Parks, was trying to have money wired to her Summit account via Chase Bank. Chase didn’t have a record of our transit routing number since we were a new charter. Patricia was wondering if we were really a bank.
It has been fun to watch our employee count, our leased space and our assets grow. It has been rewarding to have top talent join us over the years and they are the ones responsible for building this into the strong, profitable, clean bank it is today. We are also proud to boast of an outstanding board of directors and continued growth in our quality shareholder base. We have great clients who are a pleasure to serve. The culture has been built to make this a great place to work so everyone here wants to do his or her best to serve our clients.
We look forward to a bright future.
Chris Creider shares some of her early memories about the beginning of Summit Bank.
When I got the call to come and interview with Summit Bank, a CFO had already been hired and was working on getting the bank setup (selecting software, establishing processing procedures, getting regulatory approvals, etc.). I interviewed with Wade and the CFO on the afternoon of September 11, 2001. A day none of us will ever forget. Summit was not scheduled to open for several months but I was offered a position with First United Bank in the interim to fill in for Wade’s assistant, Stacy White, who had decided to stay home with her new baby. I started as Wade’s assistant in October, 2001 and did a variety of things including preparing loan documents, booking loans and fielding customer calls. As opening day approached my responsibilities became more focused on getting the Loan Administration Department established by writing procedures and training on all the new software. Wade had hired a new permanent assistant by then and Stacy White returned to work with me as a part-time employee in Loan Administration. On that first day, she and I manually input into the new loan system over one hundred loans that Summit had purchased from FUB to begin operations. From that point we have grown to six full time Loan Administration staff members and currently have more than six hundred loans. We have seen the end of paper credit files in the last 10 years. The daily responsibilities for the Loan Admin staff changed significantly with the conversion to imaged files and the ability to send and receive loan documents electronically. The audit and exam processes have also changed with the elimination of paper loan files.
The number of hours spent on regulatory compliance issues has increased dramatically in recent years. In addition to the significant changes to existing regulations, many new regulations have been enacted in the last couple of years. Ensuring compliance now requires research and interpretation on many loan transactions that once were routine.
While there have been some difficult moments during the last ten years, our strong management team and hard-working staff have made Summit Bank an exceptional place to work.