Kirkpatrick Bank assembles team of heavy hitters, making a play to double in size

There are many things Kirkpatrick Bank could do to grow business, things like change its  name or launch a cool marketing strategy.

But if they don’t have the right people, it would flop, said Trent Stafford, Kirkpatrick senior vice president.

That’s why the Edmond, Okla.-based bank, which has a branch in downtown Colorado Springs, has assembled a team of banking heavy hitters – Lisa Rutherford, Jocelyn Wall, Mark Benes and Bill Berenz – and set a goal to double in size in the next five years.

“The ability to differentiate self through product and services is extremely difficult,” Stafford said. “Our model is to hire the best talent.”

The four newest members to the Kirkpatrick team bring with them decades of Colorado Springs banking knowledge and relationships, Stafford said. It’s just what it will take to move Kirkpatrick Bank forward, he said.

The hires were months in the making, he said. He wooed Berenz out of retirement, who had just retired this summer as regional president from ANB Bank. He will work on business development and community involvement.

Rutherford joins Kirkpatrick Bank as vice president treasury management. She ran the cash management at ANB Bank. Kirkpatrick Bank had the product and services, but lacked the delivery system – the people like Rutherford, Stafford said.

Wall was the first female commercial lender in Colorado Springs in the 1970s. She joins Kirkpatrick Bank as senior vice president.

“She brings a ton of energy and she knows everyone in the marketplace,” Stafford said.

And Benes joins as senior vice president. His area of expertise is commercial real estate and construction loan and banking relationships.

“I wouldn’t say that we are changing the mission,” Stafford said. “It’s a focused opportunity to fill a void in the market place, which is relationship banking.”

Kirkpatrick Bank has a $550 million portfolio; about $70 million in Colorado Springs, Stafford said. The bank’s area of expertise is commercial and industrial lending and within that, the bank is real estate lender.

“We live here,” Stafford said. “We work here. We invest here. That is the bottom line for us and we’re ready for growth.”