Farm Bureau Member Profile: Meet Exchange Bank

Written By: Paige Pedri
Published: July 1, 2018

“From generation to generation, we invest in people, business and community to build a strong future.” Exchange Bank Mission Statement

 

Exchange Bank has been a steadfast part of Sonoma County for all of our lives and the lives of our parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and in some cases great-great grandparents! As a matter of fact, Exchange Bank has been an integral part of Sonoma County since the father and son team of Manville and Frank Doyle opened the doors to their bank on May 1, 1890 in downtown Santa Rosa, on 4th (near) Mendocino. Almost on the exact spot where its headquarters are today.

 

With vineyards, orchards of apples and prunes, dairy cattle, grain and eggs, farmers and ranchers were some of the Bank’s first customers and continue as customers today. As our agricultural heritage has grown and changed over the years, Exchange Bank has grown and changed with us in order to provide the products and services that small to medium sized agri-businesses in the County need.

 

When Manville Doyle and his son Frank Doyle moved to Santa Rosa back in the late 1800s, the duo
believed that Sonoma County offered the most promising future in California. They dreamed of starting a bank that would serve the needs of the growing farming and commerce community. As our County has grown and changed and celebrated great booms as well as massive blows, Exchange Bank has been here to help.

 

Following the 1906 earthquake and fires that nearly wiped out our small but thriving little town (of somewhere around 10,000 people back then), Exchange Bank was one of the first to jump in and start rebuilding the community. Exchange Bank was the first business to resurrect a structure—the day after the earthquake. They wanted to not only protect the vault, but to be open and available to exchange money. Their slogan post-earthquake was “Build a Bigger and Better Santa Rosa.” And so we did. Following the October wildfires, Exchange Bank has committed to again be at the forefront of rebuilding and healing our community—and so again we will build a better Santa Rosa.

 

When his father Manville passed in 1916, Frank Doyle took over as the Bank’s president. Frank was not only a true visionary and business mastermind, but truly committed to Sonoma County and its people. To better serve the farmers, he opened the Bank’s first branch in 1925, known as the Windsor Branch. As the automobile was starting to become a part of our society and the economy was booming, Frank was instrumental in in helping to improve and widen roads to accommodate these new horseless carriages.

 

As is typical following a boom, our entire country experienced our biggest bust— the stock market crash of 1929. Thanks to Frank Doyle’s sound business planning, Exchange Bank was declared healthy and allowed to re-open in 1933, just as the County was on the brink of having to print our own scrip! In the midst of this massive economic setback, Frank was determined to help Sonoma County grow even more. He undertook one of the State’s most impressive and life changing projects— the Golden Gate Bridge. Along with other prominent Northern California businessmen, Frank dedicated 10 years to the project and was instrumental in procuring the construction funding. To honor his hard work and dedication, Frank Doyle was the very first person to drive across the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937 and earned the moniker “The Father of the Golden Gate Bridge.” Doyle Drive in San Francisco is named in his honor.

 

The Golden Gate Bridge opened a new path to Sonoma County, and a new era of growth rolled in. To ensure that the Bank should forever remain a locally owned and managed institution, Frank Doyle and his wife Polly decided to place his controlling interest of the Bank’s common stock (50.44%) into a perpetual trust rather than distributing it to his heirs. Upon his death is 1948, and at his bequeath, the Frank P. Doyle and Polly O’Meara Doyle Scholarship Fund was established—one of the most extraordinary scholarship programs in the country for assistance to “worthy young men and women attending Santa Rosa Junior College. To date, students in good standing at the Santa Rosa Junior College are eligible to receive Doyle Scholarships. It was Frank’s desire to continue to support his community in perpetuity and continually invest in the community, keeping it vibrant and strong through educational support. To date, the trust has distributed over $83 million in scholarships to more than 127,000 students.

 

As Sonoma County has grown, so has Exchange Bank, with 18 branches in Sonoma County and a commercial and SBA lending office in Roseville and Marin, California. Exchange Bank provides a wide range of personal, commercial and trust and investment products and services for consumers and small to medium sized businesses. Throughout its 128 years, Exchange Bank has remained as committed to our community as its founders, Manville and Frank Doyle. From day one, Exchange Bank has always understood that its success is directly linked to the success if the community. In 2017, Exchange Bank awarded over $750,000 to more than 300 non-profit and charitable organizations. Employees demonstrate their commitment to the community through thousands of volunteer hours each year. Bank-sponsored fundraisers are a tradition that foster a spirit of giving throughout the Bank. In 2017, Exchange Bank employees raised an additional $117,000 through a variety of fundraising activities. The executive team sits on numerous boards and supports local organizations including 4H, FFA and the Youth Ag Leadership Foundation, the Saralee Kunde Barn at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds, and many more.

 

Exchange Bank has been a long-time member of the Sonoma County Farm Bureau and has recently upgraded its membership to Premium level. They are also pleased to have Farm Bureau President Steve Dutton serve in its board, along with Dante B. Benedetti.

 

Howard Daulton, the Bank’s Senior Vice President and Corporate and Business Development Manager is looking forward to getting more involved with the Farm Bureau this year. Howard is also your best point of contact at the Bank, if you are in need of a loan, credit or other business services. From vineyards to dairy, food processing to small organic farming and everything in between, Exchange Bank would be pleased to earn your business!

 

Exchange Bank Services tailored to Agri-Business:
Commercial Real Estate and Construction Loans
Crop Development Loans
Vineyard Loans
Lines of Credit
Equipment and Barrel Loans
inventory and Equipment Financing
Leasing

 

Consumer Services
Checking & Saving
Trust Administration
Investment Management
Retirement plans and individual retirement accounts

www.Exchangebank.com

 

Your Banking Contact:
Howard Daulton
Sr Vice President – Corporate and Business Development Manager
Direct: (707) 524.3067
Howard.Daulton@ExchangeBank.com

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To represent, protect and advance the social, economic and educational interests of the farmers and ranchers of Sonoma County.