Joseph W. Park Jr.

President and CEO

Bank of Cabot

Cabot


Joseph W. Park Jr.

As a regional vice president for Wells Fargo & Co. in Denver, Joseph Park Jr. traveled 30,000 miles a month. He put tacks on a map to show his 3-year-old son the places he visited.

One day his son asked Park, "But when are you going to be my daddy?"

"That just ripped my guts out," the 36-year-old Park recalls. "So I said, 'We're going to find a new life.' So we prayed about it."

Soon afterward, Park's uncle, James Park, who had been chief executive officer for about 40 years at the Bank of Cabot, called. He planned to retire and was seeking a replacement. Joe Park returned in 1994 to lead the bank, which has grown from $109 million in assets then to almost $200 million today.

"We have benefited greatly from the economy," Park says. "Cabot has been good for us. But in the past year most of our growth has come from outside Cabot."

Since January 1997, the bank has added branches in Jacksonville, Sherwood and Beebe. The bank and employees have reshaped the 95-year-old business into a "modern financial institution that has held to the traditions of being a key player in leadership of the community," Park says.

For five generations, the Park family has run the bank even though they don't own it. About 420 investors own the bank.

Park is a past president of the Cabot Chamber of Commerce and serves on the boards of the North Lonoke County Economic Development Corp. and the Arkansas State University-Beebe Community Foundation.