Passing Of Banking Icon Alters CUHearing
SALT LAKE CITY - (05/17/06) -- The banking community was mourninglast week's passing of Roy Simmons, the 90-year-old founder andformer chairman of Zions Bancorporation, and father of currentZions' chairman Harris Simmons. The passing of his father causedthe younger Simmons, the chief nemesis of credit unions andchairman of the American Bankers Association, to cancel hisscheduled testimony on credit union conversions before the HouseFinancial Services Financial Institution Subcommittee. The elderSimmons and his business partners acquired a controlling interestin Zions First National Bank from the Mormon Church in 1960, thenchanged its name to Zions Bancorporation. By the time he retired in2002 and handed the reigns to his son Harris, Roy Simmons had builtZions into one of the biggest locally owned banks in the west.Zions is well-known among Utah credit unions as the leading backerof legislative efforts to tax credit unions and limit theirmembership, which has been elevated to the national level with thisyear's ascension of Harris Simmons as chairman of the ABA. Withlast year's acquisition of Amegys Bancorp in Texas, Zions now hasmore than $45 billion in assets and 450 offices in 10 westernstates.