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Lead Bank

Website lead.bank
Location USA
Impact story

Mission 

Lead Bank is a ninety year-old traditional community bank based in Kansas City, Missouri. Lead Bank’s mission is to be at the heart the success of our communities.  The Bank recognizes that only by viewing others with Compassion, Openness and Imagination as we are able to achieve the understanding we need to be a good partner in the success of different communities.  And only by being Nimble in our actions can we break out of complacency to embark on innovations that will create and inspire success.  Giving back is important for Lead Bank.  We believe that community banks exist as a historical experiment in American enterprise. That means that we always have to be thinking about what will create success in different communities – communities defined by geography as well as those defined by gender, ethnicity, socio-economic status, life stage etc.

History 

Lead Bank started in 1928 in a rural town outside of Kansas City called Garden City, Missouri, by farmers, shopkeepers and residents of the town. Like many  community banks, it served one community until 2006 until it expanded into metropolitan  Kansas City in 2008.  Later, in 2011, we changed our name to Lead Bank because we felt that with a new metropolitan focus, we needed to say something bigger about our intentions: Lead was a one-word mission statement for our intention to chart our own course, innovating in our business to serve our community better.

Today, our traditional community bank has grown rapidly alongside an emerging national, consumer business. Looking beyond our traditional geographic constraints, we serve clients all over the country with their payment processing needs. In the last two years, we have developed thriving channel partnership strategies serving FinTech companies as the banking platform for their services. We are particularly focused on efforts to serve underbanked or unbanked communities, including women and people of color, who have been traditionally excluded from banking.

Structure 

Lead Bank is solely owned by Lead Financial Group, a Missouri “S-Corp”, which is owned by the Rowland family.  Lead Bank, LFG’s sole subsidiary, is a fully-insured FDIC community bank chartered in the state of Missouri.  At the end of 2019, Lead Bank had about $370 million in assets and continues to experience growth in all of its strategies.

Board Management 

Lead Bank is wholly-owned by Lead Financial Group.  The Board Chair is Mrs. Sarah Rowland, and her son, Joshua Rowland, is the Vice Chairman and CEO. Mrs. Rowland is also majority owner. The board is ethnically-diverse as well as gender-diverse, comprised of 50% women. Lead Bank is proud that the majority of its independent directors are women, which is another banking milestone.

Market Focus 

Lead Bank provides full banking services for businesses, families and not-for-profit organizations.  An integral part of Lead Bank’s strategy is meeting the financing needs of businesses and people who have been traditionally underserved by the banking industry, which includes women and other minorities as well as individuals who have poor credit. Lead Bank is committed to finding responsible ways and high quality financial services for ordinary people.

Benefits of being apart of GABV

Lead Bank is also committed to advancing positive change in the banking sector and in various communities through its practices of value-based banking.  Lead Bank’s values align perfectly with GABV as we, too, feel that technology has not yet proven its promise of increasing access and understanding of money and capital for hundreds of millions of people. There is so much work that needs to be done in financial services to actually deliver meaningful recognition and respect and cultural competency for people who have been marginalized from financial services, like women and people of color. We are excited to join a network of like-minded and socially-conscious banks that share our mission and our values to create financial opportunities for everyone.

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