Ahrendt retires from First Dakota National Bank Larry Ness, CEO of First Dakota National Bank, has announced Jim Ahrendt has retired as of Dec. 31, 2004.
Ahrendt has been the bank's president and chief operating officer since 1992.
Ahrendt began his banking career in 1973 in Mitchell. He joined First Dakota in 1983 as its executive vice-president and chief lending officer. He was elected to First Dakota's Board of Directors in 1991 and was named president and chief operating officer in 1992.
In addition to his leadership role with the bank, Ahrendt was committed to community service. He served as president of Yankton's United Way campaign, the Yankton Area Chamber of Commerce, Yankton Area Progressive Growth, Hillcrest Golf & Country Club, Yankton Rotary, and chairman of Avera Sacred Heart's Board of Directors. He also served on USD's Board of Trustees, the S.D. Career Service Commission, and the South Dakota Bankers' Association Board of Directors.
Ahrendt will continue to serve on First Dakota's Board of Directors. Other board members are Ness, John Willcockson, Celia Miner, and David Olson.
Executive management has been restructured at First Dakota in conjunction with Ahrendt's retirement. The executive management group now consists of Ness, Denis Fokken, Denny Everson, Rob Stephenson, and Gene Uher.
Ness is chairman, president, and chief executive officer of First Dakota. He joined First Dakota in 1983 as president and was named CEO in 1992. He has been board chairman since 1996.
Fokken has been named First Dakota's chief operating officer and chief financial officer. He joined First Dakota in 1976 and has been executive vice president and chief financial officer since 1992.
Everson has been with First Dakota since 1984 and is the president of the Agri-Business Division. First Dakota is the eighth largest community ag bank in the United States.
Stephenson joined First Dakota in 1996. Prior to that he was a bank examiner with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. He was named executive vice president and chief lending officer in March 2004.
Uher joined First Dakota in 2003 and has been named director of branch administration and marketing. Uher is the president of First Dakota's two Sioux Falls locations.
Other recent promotions include, Nate Franzen to the position of market manager for the Yankton and Vermillion markets, and Farron Pratt to manager of First Dakota in Vermillion.
Franzen has been with First Dakota since 1998. He oversees retail activities in the Yankton and Vermillion markets. Pratt joined First Dakota in 2002 as an ag loan officer in Vermillion. He has 14 years of banking experience.
First Dakota has enjoyed significant growth in the last 20 years. With total assets exceeding $500 million and a financial team of over 250 dedicated banking professionals, First Dakota has grown to 12 offices including: Chamberlain, Kimball, Parkston, Salem, Vermillion, Wagner, with two locations each in Mitchell, Sioux Falls and Yankton. Additionally, First Dakota has loan production offices in Corsica, South Dakota and Elgin, Hastings, and Ogallala, NE.
First Dakota was founded in 1872 and holds the Dakota Territory's first bank charter. As South Dakota and the upper Midwest have evolved, so has First Dakota. Today, First Dakota offers one of the broadest arrays of financial services in the region, including telephone banking, internet banking at firstdakota.com and online cash management for business.