One Valley is the largest home-owned bank in West Virginia. At near $3.5 billion of assets, it has come a long way since the 1970s, when, as one of the two largest banks in the state, it was a $450 million institution with 11% capital in a unit banking state. West Virginia was very late in changing its branching laws (a change brought about by then state banking commissioner Phyllis Arnold, who is now One Valley's presiden0. In 1982, when the law was revised, former CEO Robert Baronner and senior management visited several banks and reviewed growth models.
"We visited Bank One and John G. McCoy and liked their style," says J. Holmes Morrison, now One Valley's chairman and CEO. "It fit us better in West Virginia to build a network of bank affiliates which allows for diverse cultures." Valley then set out to build a regional bank holding company with local affiliates, or a supercommunity bank.