Board members Scott Gonzales, Dale Behrends, Dave Reinhart, Eric Reinhart, Patrick Moylan, Jamie Patrick, Mike Underwood, Melia Van Meter, Roger Underwood, Barry Monaghan and Lynnea Anderson. (Absent: Larry Brandt)

Board is expected to be more than 40% female when transitions are complete.

By Rich Wicks | Times Vedette

The Board of Directors at Guthrie County State Bank is in the midst of some change, as some longtime board members aim to transition off the board in the near future. Bank president Mike Underwood explained the ongoing process and pointed out that when the transition is complete, the board is expected to be more than 40% female.

Underwood explained that some board members are ready to transition off the board after many years of service. Because of that, the board membership list is currently larger than usual. The three current female board members are Jamie Patrick, Lynnea Anderson and Melia Van Meter.

“We’ve got 10 board members right now because we’re in a transition process,” Underwood said. “We put a plan in place as to how could we replace those and transition them off and bring some new people on board. When it’s all said and done, we should have seven.”

Underwood explained that the bank has strived to modernize the board by welcoming females.

“It was a conscious effort on our part, to start to move in this direction,” Underwood said. “The most recent addition was Lynnea Anderson. She came on this year. Three years ago, we invited Melia Van Meter to come aboard. Jamie Patrick, who is our EVP (executive vice president) has been on the board for about 10 years.”

Underwood says board members are selected for their experience and skills, as well as their ability to represent the bank in the community. He pointed out that another expectation of board members is to help refer potential customers to the bank. Regarding the current board members, Underwood said the newest members have handled that duty admirably.

“They’ve jumped right in and made that happen for us,” Underwood said.

Melia Van Meter shared her perspective.

“I’m enjoying learning at every meeting. I like feeling like I’m helping the community because we’re such a prominent presence in the community. I started working here in high school, so I’ve always had an attachment to Guthrie County State Bank,” Van Meter said.

As the board’s newest member, Lynnea Anderson welcomes the new challenge.

“I’ve lived in Guthrie County my whole life,” Anderson said. “Being able to serve on the board and learn about the banking industry as a social worker, in such a progressive bank….is exciting.”

Jamie Patrick has spent her career at the bank and enjoys helping the board forge its path ahead.

“I come in with a little bit different role. I’ve been at this institution for 27 years, so I have the banking experience,” Patrick said.