Heard on the Street: West Bank lines up who's who of Med City business leaders

A bank that's entering the Rochester market has lined up a who's who of Med City business leaders to serve as a community board.

Des Moines, Iowa-based West Bank plans to open a loan production office in Suite 100 of 3147 Superior Drive N.W. on Monday. Its focus is on business banking, though it also will offer treasury management services and home mortgages.

"Relationships are a vital cornerstone to West Bank's business practices," says West Bank CEO Dave Nelson. "We're fortunate that we've been able to attract fifteen amazing community leaders who have helped shape Rochester."

The board members are:

• Retired state senator Nancy Brataas


• Rochester developer Gus Chafoulias

• Pace International CEO Pat Deutsch

• Universal Marine & RV President Greg Groves

• Wells Fargo's former President of Regional Banking Norb Harrington

Regional Banking President

• HGA Architects Vice President and Principal Hal Henderson

• Dunlap and Seeger Law Firm Attorney A. M. Sandy Keith

• Charlie Kuehn of Kuehn Motors


• Dick Kuehn of Kuehn Motors

• Rochester business leader James McPeak Sr.

• Wendland Utz Law Firm Attorney Dave Pederson

• Powers Enterprises President Joe Powers

• A. B. Systems Inc. Co-founder Peter Schuller

• Merit Building Enclosure Systems owner Ed Stanley

• Olmsted Medical Center CEO Tim Weir

• West Bank Rochester Market President Michael Zinser


• West Bank Chief Risk Officer Harlee Olafson

• West Bank CEO David Nelson

Nelson, who previously was thepresident of Wells-Fargo Rochester, has a lot of history and contacts here. He took over the leadership of West Bank, a $1.4 billion community bank in 2010.

He says the high profile board members will provide advice and support for the West Bank loan office.

"We will turn to these accomplished professionals and seek their insights, perspective and collective wisdom," Nelson.

The loan office is most likely the first phase for West Bank activity in Rochester. Nelson says if things proceed as planned, they could very well build a more traditional bank branch.

Columnist, blogger and reporter Jeff Kiger tracks business action in Rochester and southeastern Minnesota every day in Heard on the Street.

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