One hundred years ago on Feb. 18, Security Trust and Savings Bank on Lake Ave. opened for business.
The bank will be celebrating their birthday with a ribbon cutting and picnic open to the public on June 25. After the bank opened at its original location at the corner of Railroad and Lake Ave, the Pilot-Tribune had the honor of purchasing the first draft issued by the bank.
The draft was signed by L.E. Ballou Jr., assistant cashier at the time. He would later take over as bank president. L.E. Ballou Jr. graduated from Storm Lake High School in 1904 and then from Buena Vista College. His father, L.E. Ballou Sr. who served as the first president moved to Storm Lake in 1877 after serving in the Civil War. In 1965 a drive up bank location was added, making it the first drive up bank in Storm Lake and the 12th in the state. Two buildings were combined in 1985 to enlarge the bank.
The local family and locally owned bank is only located in Storm Lake and is not part of a chain. The bank has grown from $50,000 in start up capital to total assets of $109 million. Each year the bank donates about $35,000 to local organizations.
Current President David Dvergsten's wife Barbara is the daughter of former president E.L. Ballou; Barbara serves on the board of the bank's holding company. David and Barbara Dvergsten's son, Ben also works with the bank as an attorney.
Currently the bank has twenty employees, many of whom have worked at the bank for many years. The bank has only seen four presidents during their first 100 years. "Part of the reason for our longetivy here is our staff, many whom have served the bank for over 30 years," said Dvergsten. "Our recently retired CEO E.L. Ballou was with the bank for 70 years." Dvergsten has worked at the bank for 33 years and has been President for 17 years. "We are looking forward to our next one hundred years," said Dvergsten. "I think it would be safe to say we plan to go forward and continue serving the community."