Josef M. Vich

Image of  Josef M. Vich

Josef M. Vich

Community Bank & Trust

Laureate 2014

“It’s your attitude, not your aptitude that determines your altitude,” – words Joe Vich lives by.

In 1965, while attending Iowa State University, Joe met Troyce on a blind date and married in 1968. The couple has two children, Trent and Lynette (Doug) and three grandsons. Over the years, Joe has had numerous jobs including pumping gas, delivering bulk fuel and gas, as well as roles in various financial institutions and retail management.

Former president of The National Bank of Waterloo, and successor to Homeland Bank, Joe, along with nine investors, started Community National Bank in 1997, when there was only one locally-owned bank in the metro area due to a series of mergers and acquisitions. “Joe realized that with the sale to Homeland, the bank would no longer be based in Waterloo and would not have the same commitment to the Cedar Valley”, said Geoff Grimes, Retired Partner of Struxture Architecture. He left Homeland Bank, “at great personal risk” to start a new bank with local investors to maintain a Cedar Valley base. Joe became Vice Chairman at Community Bank and Trust in 2013 when QCR Holdings in Moline, IL acquired Community National Bank.

One thing remains steadfast through the years and is evident today – Joe’s unwavering commitment to the community. “Joe and Community Bank and Trust have become an integral partner in the community and have benefitted the Cedar Valley by their presence, not only as an employer, but as a participating member in the development of the area,” states Grimes.

Joe is a man of “great personal integrity, leading by example in a positive and professional manner,” says Grimes. Joe’s passion to serve the Cedar Valley and its residents is evident through his many volunteer efforts. Joe has severed on the board of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance and was Chair in 2007; served on the board and as chair of the Black Hawk County Enterprise Zone, was a member of the UNI Educational Advisory Council, was Co-Chair of the 2013 Cedar Valley United Way campaign, raising a record amount of money for the organization’s programming and agencies, and was most recently elected Vice Chair of the Cedar Valley United Way board and will serve as its chair in 2015.

Former Mayor John Rooff describes Joe as a “man of quiet conviction.” “He absolutely knows what he feels is the right thing to do. He is always willing to do something for this community,” Rooff said. Similarly, Mary Ann Burk, former Director of the Community Foundation said, “He was a vital part of the start of the Partners in Education program linking schools with area businesses and has put that same energy into Cedar Valley’s Promise. He is the type of leader that by his very own actions inspires others to support the causes he feels are important.”

As Joe transitions into retirement, he states “the horizon is open-ended”. He intends to contribute to the community as he always has, spend quality time with his family and create more memories with his grandchildren. Having just earned his U.S. Coast Guard Captain’s license, he also plans to enjoy his boat and chartering service on the Mississippi, as well as contribute locally and nationally as a National Disaster Response Volunteer for the American Red Cross.

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