Lamar Ball Jr. is a community bank owner's dream come true. He has a billionaire's backing, leaves acquired banks alone after he buys the stock, and confidently pays cash.

For the last year, Mr. Ball has used billionaire Carl Pohlad's money to buy nine north Texas banks. The silver-haired banker is building the '90s version of the Texas super community bank: a suburban, home grown network of locally run community banks without the large, city based lead bank. A kind of "First City Lite."

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