CORPUS CHRISTI, TX | February 2, 2018 – American Bank has announced a new five-year strategic plan designed to leverage its strength as a community bank and reputation for solutions-oriented client relationships, and defining the path toward becoming a leading Texas regional bank by 2022. The plan reflects the commitment of the bank’s shareholders, board and management to provide independent, community banking to its existing clients and communities while expanding into additional Texas markets in the very near future. Making the announcement was Ben B. Wallace, Chairman of the Board; Richard Scanio, Vice-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer; and Patricia Hawn Wallace, Chairman of American Bank Holding Corporation, Chairman of Borden Insurance and an American Bank board member.

As a major step in the plan, the executive management team was enhanced to lead the bank in achieving its goals, under the leadership of Stephen Raffaele, who joined American Bank in September 2016 as Chief Operating Officer. In May 2017, Raffaele was promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer and is responsible for the day-to-day management of the Bank, as well as implementation of the Bank’s strategic and operational plans. Joining him and Scanio on the Executive Team are Tom Adams, chief financial officer; Jim Avery, chief information systems officer; Steven Cooper, director of operations and support; David Doherty, chief credit officer; Melissa Garrett, internal audit manager; Ben Hughes, chief human resources officer; Brent Johnston, chief lending officer; Patrick King, treasurer; Townes Mahaffey, legal counsel and board secretary; Mark Meyer, president of the South Texas region; Cal Ratcliff, chief compliance officer; Suzelle Tinnell, director of enterprise planning and alignment; and John Wessman, director of consumer banking and marketing.

“American Bank is a leader in community banking, serving South and Central Texas for over 47 years,” Ben Wallace said. “We are extremely excited about this time of growth and transformation. The new executive team members bring deep and broad financial services experience, along with business vision and strategic and operational leadership that will serve the bank and our clients well as we enter this new era,” he added.

Key elements in the strategic plan include loan and deposit growth in existing markets, the entrance into new markets in Texas, investments in technology to improve client experience and productivity, and the 
continuation of market management empowered to make local decisions. Technology investments approved by the board in late 2017 include significant upgrades to the core data processing, online banking and other systems, to provide an enhanced experience for clients and improved risk management.

“While the bank is evolving, the board and shareholders remain committed to Corpus Christi – our headquarters and the place it all started in 1970,” said Patricia Hawn Wallace. “Our plans ensure we will remain an independent bank for many years to come,” she added. “We will continue to provide the personal service and deep local market knowledge we are known for, along with the sophisticated products, services and technologies typically found in much larger banks,” said Scanio. He added, “We know there are other areas of Texas that can benefit from our style of banking and we are excited to enter those markets. We plan to enter the Houston and San Antonio markets before year-end.”

Executive Management Team

Richard Scanio PhotoRichard Scanio
Vice Chairman and CEO
Richard Scanio joined American Bank in 1989 and served as chief lending officer during an historic period of growth and expansion. He was appointed chief operating officer in 2007 and added the duties of president to his role in 2009. He joined the bank’s board of directors in 2004. Prior to his tenure at American Bank, he spent 16 years as a community banker in the Austin, Texas market.
Scanio serves as the 2017-2018 secretary-treasurer of the Independent Bankers Association of Texas (IBAT) board of directors, where he has served since 2011. IBAT is the state’s largest community banking association.
Active in the Corpus Christi community, he currently serves as chairman of the finance committee for the South Texas Council of the Boy Scouts of America, and is also a past council president. He has also held board positions with the Texas State Aquarium and the Corpus Christi Yacht Club.
Scanio received a B.B.A. degree in Finance from the University of Texas at Austin.


Stephen Raffaele Photo
Stephen Raffaele, CFA
President and Chief Operating Officer
Stephen Raffaele is a longtime Texas banker with deep experience in management and governance at both publicly-traded and private banking organizations. Since joining American Bank in 2016, he has led a significant strategic planning initiative encompassing a long-term growth and profitability strategy across the bank. With responsibility for all aspects of the bank’s scope of activities, Raffaele is leading the bank forward in the execution of its strategic plan.
Raffaele’s previous experience includes positions as director, chief financial officer and chief operations officer for F&M Bank & Trust Co. and chief strategy and corporate development officer, treasurer, and chief financial officer with Guaranty Bank, both in Dallas. He was also a board member and the chief financial officer, chief investment officer, and treasurer at various times for Sterling Bank in Houston. With a background also in wealth management, mergers and acquisitions and investor relations, Raffaele has also been an independent bank investor and board member, taking an instrumental role in the recapitalization, board formation and turnaround of a North Texas commercial bank.
Raffaele is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and received a B.A. in Business from Baylor University. He is an active member of the CFA Institute, Baylor Angel Network, Financial Executives International, and Association for Financial Professionals.
He joined the bank’s Board of Directors in 2017.


Tom Adams photoTom Adams, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
Tom Adams joined the American Bank Executive Team in 2017, with the responsibility for all aspects of the bank’s accounting, corporate treasury, finance, policy and financial reporting functions.
He has over 25 years of combined experience in public accounting and the financial services industry. His previous positions include that of chief accounting officer for Triumph Bancorp, Inc., and F&M Bancorporation, Inc., both of Dallas. He also served as a Director for Technical Accounting Advisory Services for KPMG’s Chicago office.
A licensed CPA, Adams earned his B.S. in Accounting from Illinois State University. He holds membership in the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Dallas CPA Society.


Jim Avery PhotoJim Avery
Chief Information Systems Officer
Jim Avery is responsible for the bank’s information technology strategy and systems. His more than 30-year tenure with the bank has included Chief Financial Officer responsibilities as well as those in Information Technology.
He received his B.A. in Business Administration from Austin College, and earned an M.B.A. in Finance from Texas Christian University’s M.J. Neeley School of Business.



Steve Cooper photoSteven Cooper
Director of Operations and Support
Steven Cooper joined the bank’s Executive Team in 2017, with responsibility for its operational and support areas, and has over 30 years of banking experience.
Prior to American Bank, he had most recently served as director of U.S. operations at BBVA Compass, where he had also served as SVP for operations transformation, and as managing director for bank operations and support at Guaranty Bank in Dallas.
Cooper received his B.A. in Political Science from Colorado State University. He also graduated from the Graduate School of Banking at SMU’s Cox School of Business.


David Doherty PhotoDavid Doherty
Chief Credit Officer
With over 29 years of banking experience, David Doherty joined American Bank in 2018 as Chief Credit Officer.
Previously he was Executive Credit Officer for IBERIABANK in Houston, with responsibility for credit approval and oversight of the Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, Alabama and Texas energy markets. He also had credit responsibility for the business banking sector and the corporate wide commercial underwriting team.
Doherty holds a B.S. and an M.S. in Finance from Louisiana State University.


Melissa Garrett PhotoMelissa Garrett
Internal Audit Manager
Melissa Garrett has managed and administered the bank’s internal audit program since 2013. Prior to joining the bank, she was the director of internal operations for the United Way of the Coastal Bend in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Garrett earned an M.B.A. from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi and a B.S. in Business Administration, Finance from State University of New York at Buffalo. She is a Certified Internal Auditor and a Certified Community Bank Internal Auditor.



Ben Hughes PhotoBen Hughes
Chief Human Resources Officer
Over his 19-year career in banking and financial services, Ben Hughes has served as a senior level Human Resources professional in a variety of organizations including Comerica Bank and Capital One Bank. Since joining American Bank in 2017, he has been responsible for the bank’s human resource strategies and practices.
Hughes received a B.A. in History at the University of North Texas. He is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management, and the SMU Cox School of Business Human Resources Roundtable.


Brent Johnston PhotoBrent Johnston
Chief Lending Officer
Brent Johnston is a veteran Houston area banker, with over 30 years of banking experience. Prior to joining American Bank as Chief Lending Officer, Johnston was the Houston market president for PlainsCapital Bank, having helped open their Houston office in 2015. Earlier in his career, Johnston served as executive vice president and manager of Houston corporate lending for Texas Capital Bank, and held leadership roles at both Southwest Bank of Texas (now Amegy Bank) and Guaranty Bank.
He is a graduate of Texas A & M University, with a B.B.A. in Finance and MIS.


Patrick King PhotoPatrick King
With more than 20 years of banking experience, Patrick King has an extensive range of management and operational experience working in several senior management roles in bank financial management, investments and risk management. Prior to joining American Bank in 2017, King served as senior vice president and treasurer at Bank SNB, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and the F&M Bank & Trust Company in Dallas, Texas. He manages the bank’s corporate treasury activities including investment management, loan and deposit pricing, and risk management.
King is a graduate of the University of Texas at Dallas with a B.S. in Economics and Finance.


Townes Mahaffey Photo
Townes Mahaffey
General Counsel and Board Secretary
Townes Mahaffey has served as American Bank’s general counsel since 1995. Prior to that time, he practiced commercial and personal injury litigation in Corpus Christi, Texas.
He is a graduate of Texas A & M University, with a B.B.A. in Finance, and holds a J.D. from South Texas College of Law in Houston, Texas.




Mark Meyer Photo
Mark Meyer
President, South Texas Region
With 40 years of banking experience, Mark Meyer has responsibility for regional lending and credit approval in the Corpus Christi, Port Aransas, Rockport and Victoria markets. Prior to joining American Bank, Meyer held positions with two of the area’s leading community banks, establishing deep roots as a South Texas banker.
He holds a B.B.A. in Finance from The University of Texas at Austin.




Cal Ratcliff PhotoCal Ratcliff
Chief Compliance Officer
After a record of 35 years of progressive management experience in financial institutions, Ratcliff joined American Bank in 2017 to manage its Bank Secrecy Act and compliance activities – a position similar to the ones he previously held with the Bank of North Carolina and IBERIABANK in Louisiana. His experience also includes 27 years with Wachovia/Wells Fargo banks as senior risk manager/director.
Ratcliff received his B.A. in Economics and Accounting from Wofford College in South Carolina. His professional involvement includes membership in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Community Bank Advisory Council and the Chief Compliance Officer Group of the Mid-Sized Bank Coalition of America.


Suzelle Tinnell PhotoSuzelle Tinnell
Director of Enterprise Planning and Alignment
Suzelle Tinnell has the responsibility for developing and managing the bank’s enterprise strategy, based on business objectives and long-term goals.
Tinnell joined the bank in 2012, as manager of the bank’s newly-organized Project Management Office. She later held the position of chief deposit services officer, while continuing her project management duties.
Prior to American Bank, Tinnell served as vice president for IT business and project management, and Director, IT Finance & PMO, at Starbucks Coffee Company in Seattle. Prior to joining Starbucks, Tinnell had a 12-year career in banking, including commercial lending roles for Puget Sound National Bank and US Bank in Washington State.
She received a bachelor’s degree in Finance from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.


John Wessman PhotoJohn Wessman
Director of Consumer Banking and Marketing
John Wessman joined the bank in 2017 as a member of its Executive Team, with responsibility for marketing, customer service, consumer banking, and Trust and Asset Management services.
With over 25 years of banking experience, he previously held positions as chief marketing officer for BBVA Compass’ U.S. markets, chief marketing officer for Guaranty Bank in Dallas, and head of branch operations at Encore Bankin Houston.
Wessman is licensed in Texas as a CPA. He earned his B.B.A in Business Honors and Accounting from The University of Texas at Austin and his M.B.A. in General Management/Entrepreneurship from the Harvard Business School.

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