It Takes a Village

Community bank welcomes new leadership with familial ties and passion

By Teresa Kenney

When Don Kveton founded Village Bank in 1993, he did so with a vision of approaching banking differently — with approaching customers differently. He recalled an incident when he was young and a “man in a suit” threatened his father, a farmer, with foreclosure after decades of droughts wrecked havoc on the family farm. When his father passed away unexpectedly, Kveton, only 14 years old at the time, was forced to move to the city to make a living for himself and his younger brother, but he never forgot the day the man knocked on his front door. He vowed, that if he ever became a businessman, he would start a bank that would see potential in people and in turn, protect and grow its community.

 

For the past 26 years, Kveton has kept that promise through the relationships and reputation he’s built at Village Bank. This year, he has welcomed a new president to the company — someone who shares his passion for helping people: his daughter, Aleesha Webb.

 

Webb began her career on the frontlines of Village Bank, working as a teller. By her own admission, she wasn’t that good at her job because she was more interested in helping customers connect through business opportunities than tending to her drawer.

 

Education has always been a driver for Webb. After graduating from the University of St. Thomas with an undergraduate degree in business, communication and women studies, she went back to the University of St. Thomas for a MBA in finance and management and then to the University of Wisconsin-Madison for a degree in banking, corporate, finance and securities law. She went on to become the vice president of Minnesota Bank & Trust and the senior vice president at Sunrise Banks before returning to Village this past fall as president and vice chair of the board of directors. Her father serves as CEO and chairman of the board.

 

True to her passion for helping others, Webb also serves on the board of directors of Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Twin Cities and ModernWell, a women-centered collaborative space that balances independent spirit with holistic well-being. And in 2015, she was chosen as one of Minnesota Business magazine’s (Real) Power 50 distinguished honorees.

 

Upon returning to Village Bank, Webb hit the ground running. She championed the bank becoming an SBA Preferred Lender — a status the bank obtained in record time: 60 days versus the typical yearlong process. As a result, Village Bank has been nominated for an ACG Bold Award. “Being a preferred SBA lender will enable Village Bank to continue to grow the communities we serve by investing in the very thing that helps communities grow: small businesses,” says Webb.

 

In the coming year, Webb also plans to expand the bank’s workforce by 20%, introduce new digital services, and increase its community presence and banking locations. “We are going to change the future of community banking in Minnesota by offering more locations and digital services. While other community banks are being purchased by national banks, we are recommitting to our mission of serving our neighbors and neighborhoods and focusing on economic stability in the Twin Cities,” says Webb. She also plans to focus on the village within the village. She’s increasing employee benefit spend by a quarter of a million dollars and implementing a planned overall increase for the entire company, investing more than a half million dollars in current Villagers to demonstrate the family’s commitment to its team.

 

“Village Bank’s roots are in entrepreneurship, relationships and personal service. I look forward to continuing and expanding on the bank’s success and am thrilled to return to my own banking roots and the opportunity to work with my business and life mentor, my father,” says Webb.

 

Village Bank has four locations in the Twin Cities area: Blaine, Anoka Ramsey, East Bethel and St. Francis. For more information on its products and services, visit villagebankonline.com.