Heritage Oaks Bank President Named Chairman of the WIB - 04/08/10

8:00a.m. PT April 8, 2010
Mitch Massey, SVP

(Paso Robles,CA) - Larry Ward, President and CEO of Heritage Oaks Bank has been named the new Chairman of the Board for the 2010-2011 Western Independent Bankers (WIB). The WIB, established in 1937, is a trade association and provider of endorsed products and services, and peer networking opportunities for community banks.

“I am honored to have been chosen to lead the WIB as Chairman of the Board.” says Ward. “The WIB is without a doubt the leading educational resource for bankers and bank directors in the Western United States,” adds Ward.

Ward, who has been the President and CEO of Heritage Oaks Bank since 1993, is only one of eight California CEO’s on the board of the non-profit association which represents 250 banks.

“WIB is honored to have a banker of the caliber and experience of Larry Ward as our Chairman for the coming year,”said Nancy Sheppard, President and CEO of Western Independent Bankers. “I have worked closely with him in recent years addressing the challenges facing the community banking industry and during this time I have seen Larry’s dedication to the spirit and cause of community banking, both within the association and his own institution,” adds Sheppard.

Ward has served on the board of the non-profit organization for five years and on the Executive committee for the last two years.

“Heritage Oaks Bank is very proud that Larry became Chairman of the Western Independent Bankers Association,” says Michael Morris, Chairman of the Board for Heritage Oaks Bank. “His selection is evidence of the high esteem in which he is held by his peers,” adds Morris.

“It will be the bankers on main streets across the nation that will carry this country out of this great recession,” says Ward. “It is we, community bankers, who will provide the capital our clients need to produce goods and services. Despite all of the negativity directed towards banks, we are and will continue to be the life blood of respective communities and for that fact, this economy,” adds Ward.