Few Texas bankers have seen more booms and busts than Elizabeth Cheever.
Co-founder of Broadway National Bank, Mrs. Cheever celebrated her 100th birthday in early June, 55 years after she and her husband scraped together $65,000 to open the San Antonio institution.
Her son, Charles Cheever Jr., chairman of the $680 million-asset bank, said she still keeps on eye on Broadway, which has become San Antonio's second-largest bank company.
"My mother is still very lucid," he said. "If she didn't like what we were doing at the bank, she would tell me."
In 1973, the Cheevers started a second institution, Eisenhower National Bank, Fort Sam Houston, and Mrs. Cheever remained a Broadway director until the late 1970s.
Rick Pitino's heart may be with the Kentucky Wildcat basketball team, but he has given his fiduciary fealty to Central Bank.
In May, Mr. Pitino's career plans became one of the sports world's most followed stories. After coaching the Kentucky team to a Division 1 NCAA championship last spring, he was offered various professional basketball jobs. The most lucrative would have been with the New Jersey Nets, which offered him $30 million to become coach, general manager, and part-owner of the NBA team.
But while the basketball world waited to see what he would do, one of the best indicators that he would stay in Lexington had already surfaced. On May 10, he accepted appointment to the board of directors of Lexington's Central Bank. Three weeks later, he publicly stated he would stay at least another year in Kentucky - for a $1 million salary.
"My heart is with the players of Kentucky," Mr. Pitino told the wire services.
While nothing would have prevented him from being a Central Bank director while living in the Northeast, a person typically does not become a board member of a small community bank if he plans to leave town in a few weeks.
"He's been a very good customer," said Luther Deaton Jr., president of $502 million-asset Central, who approached Mr. Pitino about the job. "While he's a great coach, we went with him because he has all the qualities of a great bank director. He's a good motivator and a great leader."
T. Ken Driskell is a "yes" man if there ever was one.
Mr. Driskell, a banker for 23 years, recently wrote a book on the topic: "How To Make Your Banker Say Yes." While it is definitely targeted at commercial customers who need money, Mr. Driskell said, it also offers bankers lessons he's learned to serve existing clients better.
Mr. Driskell, who is chief executive of First Colony Bank, Alpharetta, Ga., said his book outlines 50 specific strategies for quicker and easier loan approvals.
"Most people get nervous when they apply for a loan, myself included," he said.
- R. Kevin Dietrich and Terence O'Hara