Helena Magazine

Sponsored Content: Central State Bank loyally serves customers for more than a century

Published 2:26 pm Friday, April 1, 2022

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Originally opened in 1916 in downtown Calera, Central State Bank has loyally served customers with a business model that cares for each individual customer.

“I think something that sets Central State Bank apart from other banks is being genuine,” said bank President Shane Schroeder. “It is our sincere desire to be all that we can be for each and every individual customer of the bank. We begin by caring about customers as people first. By caring about their families, by making what is important to them, important to us. We work to have an intimate understanding of everyone, and in doing so, we can more effectively serve them. We try to help customers look toward the future, to help them recognize potential opportunities as well as helping avoid potential pitfalls. We have built a team of co-workers that believe and live our vision, and we essentially function as one big family.”

Additionally, bank CEO Mitt Schroeder said more than half of the bank’s employees have been with the bank for more than five years, and approximately 20 percent have been with the bank for more than 20 years or more, allowing the employees to truly know each customer.

Since opening, the bank has grown and expanded to now have five full service branches, including three in Calera, one location in Pelham, and one location in Alabaster, and a mortgage office located in Calera as well.

Mitt Schroeder said the bank has grown through the years, and the pace of growth has increased more in the last few years.

“Our people (employees) and technology have been the greatest catalyst for our growth,” Schroeder said. “It also helps to be in a growth market of Shelby County.”

As the years have progressed the technology components have caused the banking industry to change as well.

“We are able to provide the convenience of modern banking through technology,” Schroeder said. “However, the one static aspect that has never changed is our attitude and gratefulness of our customers. It is our passionate desire to ‘Be the bank whose customers wouldn’t consider banking anywhere else.’ This is part of our mission statement, and we do that by making sure we deliver a customer service that is second to none. It is imperative that our customers know that we care about them, and will do anything to make sure we exceed their expectations.”

The Schroders’ grandfather initially began working at the bank in 1945, carrying on a family legacy that stands firm despite changes in the world and technology.

“While we always deliver the most modern technology in banking, we are determined to make sure we do it where the customer can still feel we care,” Mitt Schroeder said.

While Covid-19 provided shifts to many businesses throughout the world, it created new challenges for the banking business.

“We found ourselves about to sail into uncharted waters, however our team worked very hard to give us an outstanding chance to succeed,” said Shane Schroeder. “No rock was left unturned when it came to researching and understanding, as best possible, the state and federal relief actions that were going to be made. We made efforts to prepare for every possible scenario, and in doing so, our team had sound strategic plans for each. So, while the current economic environment is very fluid with the regard to the pandemic, we believe ourselves to be prepared. We have been very successful during this period despite the challenges of the unknown, and we believe preparing for and living through this era has made us better at not only our individual positions, but a better bank than we were prior.”

The Schroeders say their vision for Central State Bank is to continue to provide exceptional customer service, while also offering the latest in modern banking technology.

“It is our complete joy to be able to serve Shelby County and the surrounding communities,” said Mitt Schroeder. “We thank our customers for giving us the privilege of serving them. We thank our local leaders for creating so many great communities for us to live in.”