First Bank’s Legacy Takes Root
A dedicated, 100-year family history of ownership is an asset not many banks can tout. This culture of long-standing family ownership certainly sets First Bank apart from its counterparts in the financial services industry. Not only are we strengthened by experience – boasting a seasoned team of experts – but we’re also steadied by the heritage of origins dating back as far as 1906.
That’s when the First Bank story began…
In 1906, Creve Coeur Farmer’s Bank was established to help residents of a small, farming community near St. Louis reach their financial goals. Creve Coeur Farmer’s Bank became Creve Coeur Bank, then First Missouri Bank in 1973, and finally, in 1986, it became First Bank. Over 100 years later, there have been many changes to the bank, the communities in which it serves, and the financial services industry as a whole.
A Legacy that Surpasses Generations
First Bank’s family heritage first began in 1910 when William F. Dierberg became president. As the bank's success continued under his leadership, it began to grow. Clients enjoyed the family-style approach to personalized banking services. Important core values started taking shape as clients realized the value of a banker as a businessperson, a partner, and a friend.
In 1945, William Dierberg realized the importance of family heritage and handed over the reins to his son, William F. Dierberg, Jr. He succeeded his father and began the second generation of independent, family ownership. The unwavering leadership and commitment to the client held steadfast when, in 1966, the generational handoff occurred once more, this time to James F. Dierberg.
Stability and Growth
James Dierberg grew the bank’s presence and footprint by acquiring and building new branches. The bank continued to prosper and grow. Clients recognized First Bank as a strong, independent bank proactively serving their growing financial needs.
"I'm committed to keeping our company a family-owned bank."
- Jim Dierberg, Chairman of the Board (1966-2015)
The First Bank Expansion
In 1981, First Bank saw the first of many grocery store branches and expanded into Illinois. The bank assumed its current-day name, First Bank, in 1986. This period of growth continued as First Bank expanded its branches and reached an impressive $1 billion in assets. By the year 2000, the bank grew its assets to $5 billion and expanded its branch network. Realizing the need to serve clients with brokerage options, First Brokerage America, LLC, an affiliate of First Bank, opened as a full service brokerage operation in 1997.
Growth and Leadership
We certainly didn’t grow to be one of the largest, family-owned banks by standing still. This still holds true today. Presently, you'll find a bank still committed to client-focused values and traditions that began taking root more than 100 years ago. And, throughout our 100-year history, one constant remains: First Bank – and the communities in which we serve – is woven within the very fabric of the Dierberg family legacy. Now, in its fourth generation of family leadership, Jim’s son, Michael Dierberg, currently serves as Chairman of First Bank's, Inc. Michael embraces and embodies the core values of First Bank with a diligent focus on exceeding client expectations, maintaining First Bank as an independent, family-owned bank, while pursuing innovative ways to support the evolving landscape of financial services and banking.
First Bank: A Partner for the Future
At First Bank, we're proud of our heritage. Our longstanding commitment to family ownership, independence, and close, personal connections with clients sets First Bank apart from our counterparts in the industry. We’ll continue to serve with a relentless focus, while staying actively involved in the communities in which we serve. Our suite of banking solutions is designed to support the growing needs of our diverse audiences.
Tim Lathe, President/Chief Executive Officer of First Bank, along with the rest of the First Bank team, is honored to continue the vision and legacy that began over 100 years ago. Rest assured, with excitement and purpose, we’ll continue to prosper, grow, and innovate as your bank of choice. Come, experience what it means to be a part of First Bank – your partner for the future.
“We celebrate our own historic journey and embrace the future with pride, a passion for excellence, and a dedicated commitment to become your premier bank of choice.”
– Tim Lathe, President and Chief Executive Officer, First Banks, Inc.; Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer, First Bank