THE INSIDE SCOOP ON OUR NEW BANK PRESIDENT & C.O.O., DOUG LAWSON
Now that Doug has had a few months to acclimate himself, we caught up with him to find out what he’s loving about Henderson, how he got into banking and even the type of music you’d most likely catch him singing along to!
Here’s the scoop:
How it all started:
While we won’t tell you the exact reason he got into banking (ask him if you want to know - the story is worth it!), we can tell you he’s been at this since 1992. He’s spent most of his career in commercial banking, or on the executive side of banking and finance.
HINT: His first banking gig has to do with his wife, Stacey, back when they were in college!
What would Doug be doing if he hadn’t gotten into banking?
Doug’s career has been spent in the Banking and Trust Administration arena, both as an employee and as a business owner. He left the finance industry for a few years to work as an executive with Hutson Incorporated (our regions John Deere Dealer). Doug has always enjoyed the strategic side of business, agriculture, and banking.
FUN FACT: Doug journals! Eight months into his job with John Deere, he wrote in a journal that he wished he’d gone back into banking.
“I always knew in my heart of hearts I wanted to be in a bank - not just to work in banks, but to lead one,” Doug says.
What’s your favorite Henderson restaurant?
While we couldn’t get him to dish on his favorite restaurant, and pick just one, here’s what Doug had to say about the Henderson cuisine:
“Henderson is such a quaint community that has a little ‘Americana’ thing going on. Henderson has not disappointed with the food or good people. I think our people are what make the difference but it’d be wrong to choose just one restaurant,” he says.
Doug says he’s the one banker who doesn’t play golf, but according to him, he plays enough to be dangerous. Sure, he can hit the ball 300 yards, but he can’t promise what direction it will go!
Our advice: Take cover if you see him with a nine iron!
Best Banking Advice:
Doug has been around banking since college. Over the years, he’s learned as many things not to do as he has to do.
“Some of my greatest success stories have been working with people who were in dire straits. But we worked a plan together and then worked over time to see it through to fruition. Many of those people are still farming or running their business, or their house is paid off.”
One thing he’d change about banking
If he had it his way, Doug would have basic financial principles taught from an early age. He started right out of high school and still has more to learn. There are aspects of banking involving investing- especially on the Wall Street side - that he admits many people never really grasp.
“Our country lacks financial sophistication. We don’t teach basic principles to kids in high school or even college. I wish there were a way to get that into the hands of ‘Main Street USA,’” he says.
Throughout his 25 years living and working in Murray, Kentucky, Doug made a point to be involved and known in the community. Not because he wanted to be known, but because he wanted to know and understand the community he lived and worked in. Now, he wants to earn the same reputation in Henderson, Kentucky.
“Give me two years in Henderson. I want to know about everyone and I want them to know about me. I want to get into the community. Because that is really what banking is. It’s a relationship business.”
What you’ll catch him listening to:
Doug has an affinity for late 80’s rock and roll, early 90’s hip hop - but says he’s a country music guy at heart. He describes his taste in music as a jack of all trades, master of none!
Pattern: Have you noticed he doesn’t really like to play favorites? We love that!
What he says about legacies:
“My legacy isn’t about me. I hope what I learn in my career I can pass on to my children, and their children, to be good citizens. And I want other people to experience that too.”
Smooth Operator: What it’s like to work with Doug:
If the little tidbit about golf isn’t enough to convince you Doug doesn’t view himself as a big shot banker he adds he doesn’t need a stage, or a mic drop scenario to make his work feel meaningful. However, there is a method to his madness:
1. He wants to get things done.
2. Wants them done right.
3. And he wants to take care of people.
For him, this doesn’t come to fruition in big, flashy ways, however; we asked him if he ever had a mic drop opportunity, would he take it. His response:
Wouldn’t we all?
Doug and his wife Stacey have two daughters. With one in high school and the other in college, they are soon becoming empty nesters. On the weekends they spend their time house hunting in Henderson. When they take the time to kick back, they enjoy family time at the lake hanging out on the boat. Doug also teaches a finance class as an adjunct professor at Murray.