Spanjer Honored For 50 Years Of Service At Homestead Bank
Homestead Bank’s Leland Spanjer will be honored at an open house at the bank on Thursday, June 23, 2016 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
Spanjer serves as President of CSB Co., the bank’s Holding Company and Chairman of the Board at both Homestead Bank and First National Bank in Chadron, Nebraska.
Spanjer began working at the bank, fka Cozad State Bank & Trust Co. on June 1, 1966 as a teller and in the bookkeeping department.
Born in Denver, Colorado; Spanjer moved to North Platte, NE for his third grade year in elementary school and graduated with the Class of 1961 from North Platte High School.
Spanjer moved up the bank system ladder in a non-traditional way, as he did not attend college after graduating from high school.
Following his high school graduation, Spanjer worked at Sears changing tires. He was involved in a car accident and his physical therapist advised him not to return to this job, so he sought out less physical jobs in the classified ads.
“It was all happenstance that I took a job in a bank, and it has worked out extremely well,” noted Spanjer.
Spanjer did take night classes in North Platte once he moved to Cozad to acquire banking skills.
His first stint was at the Citizen’s Security Bank in Wallace beginning in December 1962.
He advanced to a loan officer in 1966 and in 1969 became the bank cashier.
In January 1970 he was elected to the board of directors and in 1974 became Vice President prior to the bank having a holding company.
At that time Bill Young owned the bank and when Young’s son Cliff bought the bank, a holding company was formed and Spanjer was named Director of the holding company.
The Holding Company purchased St. Paul National Bank, and Spanjer served as the bank’s president there until 1996.
In June 1996 he returned to Cozad and became the Vice Chairman.
Cliff Young died in March, 1997 and in April, 1997 Spanjer became Chairman of Cozad State Bank; President of the holding company and Chairman of First National Bank of Chadron, NE.
In 2008 the bank purchased First National Bank in Ainsworth and merged it with the First National Bank in Chadron.
In 2011 the bank purchased First National Bank in Schuyler, NE and merged it with Homestead Bank in Cozad.
“We started out with one location and now have nine locations stretching from Chadron to Schuyler,” Spanjer explained.
When asked why he hasn’t set a retirement date yet Spanjer responded, “I need to work and have something to do every day. I do realize that there are younger employees capable of doing the job, but I’m just not ready to retire at the present time.”
Spanjer related that the two biggest changes he has noted over the years are the equipment used in the banking industry and the regulatory burdens sanctions by the government that have increased steadily over the years.