First Security is happy to share that John Bhend has joined the bank as an Ag Lender. John will be based out of the Riceville branch, but he will serve both the Riceville community and surrounding areas.
John, who joined First Security with nearly 20 years in lending and a lifelong love of and experience in agriculture and rural America, grew up near the Minnesota and Iowa border where his family owned a cow-calf and swine operation. They exhibited purebred Simmentals, Angus, and show steers, instilling John’s passion for youth development in 4-H and FFA programs. He even won the Minnesota FFA Star State Farmer award in 1991. He later attended the University of Minnesota, where he received an Animal Science degree.
Since starting in his ag lending career, John has remained active in Bhend Farms and has continued his involvement and education regarding agriculture and banking. When his three daughters were young, he continued to participate as a volunteer for their 4-H and FFA clubs. He completed the Iowa Bankers Association’s Ag Lending School and was selected to serve on the American Bankers Association’s (ABA) Ag and Rural Markets Committee. He also was part of the planning committee for an ABA ag conference in Minneapolis.
“We are excited for John to join the team,” said Ag Lending Manager Chris Corcoran. “He brings a lot of experience and passion for supporting agriculture and rural communities.”
To demonstrate that, John has recently been working more with organic farmers, farmers that use regenerative practices, and producers building or participating in food systems to obtain a larger portion of the consumer dollar.
“One of the reasons I was excited about the opportunity at First Security is because of the entrepreneurship in the Riceville area market. In addition to traditional ag markets, there’s a lot of innovation among producers and small businesses that are created to address people’s needs,” said John. “The bank is client and service focused, and I look forward to being part of their efforts in serving the needs of North Central Iowa. The ultimate goal is building stronger communities and providing opportunities for the people that live and travel here.”
When not at work, John is very active in his community. He is a 27-year member of the Sons of the American Legion in Adams, Minnesota, a retired volunteer fireman, and a member of the Good Time Riders Snowmobile Club, a group that marks trails for other riders and raises funds for various non-profit organizations. He also enjoys camping, traveling, golfing, following sports, and raising honeybees. He and his wife have been married for 25 years and have raised three daughters who are all well on their way in starting professional careers of their own.
First Security Bank & Trust has locations across North Central Iowa and headquarters in Charles City. Member FDIC.