The next president and CEO of JCB has spent the past 15 years watching the Seymour bank consistently grow as it has for the 117 years of its existence — without acquisitions.
“So this tells me the board and leadership throughout those many years have done it the right way … we’ve earned the business, and we’re very fortunate and appreciative of the many customer relationships that we’ve enjoyed being a part of over that time span,” Marvin Veatch said.
Veatch, who is taking over leadership of the bank from Dave Geis at the end of this month, is presently chief operating officer. Geis is retiring after 44 years in the banking industry, including 37 at the helm of JCB.
“We will continue to do our very best to earn the respect and trust of customers going forward,” Veatch said.
He said banking has always been about so much more than just numbers.
“Banking is about the people in the communities they serve and helping them reach their goals, whether it be assisting them buy their first car, home or business … it is very rewarding to be there to help them along the way,” he said.
Veatch said his intrigue for the corporate world and the desire to explore those potential opportunities led him to banking and away from farming, which had been an early career option.
“Having said that, I would never trade what I learned growing up on a farm for anything else in the world, for it was there where my parents instilled a work ethic and a sense of responsibility as well as many other traits that I have drawn upon throughout my career, he said.
So Veatch headed off to Anderson College, now Anderson University, where he majored in accounting and management.
“I started my banking career during the summer months while in college, working in various positions,” he said. “I started in the backroom filing checks, worked as a teller, worked in the internal audit department and even assisted in collections and repossessions. These experiences were with two local community banks.”
After college, Veatch went to work for a public accounting firm in Indianapolis that specialized in banks and financial institutions.
“So my knowledge and understanding of the inner-workings of banking grew during my five years there,” he said.
In addition to his summers at the two local community banks and after leaving the public accounting area, Veatch went to work at Lafayette Bank and Trust, a $750 million publicly traded bank.
He was vice president/controller and principal accounting officer, and his principle responsibilities included overseeing the accounting, regulatory and Security and Exchange Commission reporting, budgeting and investment functions of the bank.
After 10 years at Lafayette Bank and Trust, the bank was acquired by First Merchants in Muncie.
Veatch said although he had an opportunity to join First Merchants, a larger organization, he continued to be drawn to the true community bank environment. That is what led him to the opportunity at JCB in 2002.
Both his father and his older brother served as directors at each of the two local banks Veatch worked at during his college summers.
“The bank presidents at each of these two banks were individuals that really enjoyed helping their customers and were also very community-minded,” he said. “These experiences really opened my eyes to the fact that community banks are involved in many aspects of the community and are really the fabric of the community.”
Veatch said the best part of working at a community bank is assisting where he can and watching those individuals and businesses grow and fulfill their dreams.
“The negative aspect is, as an industry, having to deal with all of the regulatory burden and oversight and seeing how that impacts customers,” he said.
During his 28 years in finance and banking, Veatch said the biggest change generally speaking has been technology.
“… and I don’t think this necessarily just pertains to the banking industry, but this can be said for probably just about any industry,” he said.
Aubrey Woods is editor of The Tribune of Seymour, a sister publication of The Republic.
Name: Marvin Veatch
Occupation: Chief operating officer of JCB
Education: Majored in accounting and management at Anderson College
Family: Wife, Beth; daughter, Katherine, 11