We’re celebrating one hundred years of serving Utah communities with free cookie Fridays. Each month one of our 13 branches will be spotlighted—for that
month, the spotlighted branch will have free cookies in their lobby. You can read a little bit about the history of Bank of American Fork below, with a
history of the spotlighted branch. For a deeper history and to view photos, visit our Bank History.
Bank of American Fork was established in 1913 as The People's State Bank of American Fork. The first two decades after opening brought success for the bank
and its reputation for being safe and sound was solidified. Challenges came in 1932, when the People’s State Bank of American Fork closed its doors to
prevent a run on deposits. While a third of the nation’s banks did the same and never reopened, the People’s State Bank was open for business nine months
later after tremendous sacrifice on the part of its management. The 1940s and ‘50s were better years for banking, and the People’s State Bank of American
Fork thrived. In the 1960s the name was shortened to Bank of American Fork and proved itself a technological leader when it made a large investment in
upgrading to advanced computerized systems. In the ‘80s and ‘90s, Bank of American Fork began to receive national recognition for being safe and strong. It
was during this time that the bank began strategic expansion across Utah, finding communities where Bank of American Fork fit and filled needs. Today, we
are proud to be a part of 13 communities, and Utah’s community bank leader.
Saratoga Springs Branch December 29, 2008
The twelfth branch opened as Lehi expanded westward toward Saratoga Springs as the fastest growing community in Utah. As a result of the fast growth, traffic around the Lehi branch was becoming a concern. The branch location was originally ideal, but Lehi’s Main Street had become crowded with retail space and congested traffic. It was getting harder for customers to access the bank, especially during rush hours, some of the busiest time at the branch. Seeing a need for better access for customers and an opportunity as Lehi grew toward Saratoga Spring, Bank of American Fork purchased land there. The branch opened when there were enough loans and deposits to support it. A few years later, Pioneer Crossing opened to connect Saratoga Springs with the rest of Utah County, sky-rocketing the area’s population and increasing traffic at the Saratoga Springs branch.
Draper Branch July 2, 2001
The eighth branch opened in a strip mall as Bank of American Fork’s first branch in Salt Lake County. Utah was the third fastest-growing state in the nation; between the 2000 and 2010 census, population grew an astounding 23 percent. Utah County was the fastest-growing county in the state and Bank President Dale Gunther began to notice particular population and retail growth in the Draper area, just past the northern border of Utah County. While searching for the right permanent spot, the branch opened in a strip mall. The staff moved into a new branch building in June 2005, after they finally found a better spot, closed the deal on a new spot and designed and built the new building.
Murray Branch January 15, 2003
The bank’s 10th branch opened in Murray. Management had been debating the idea for several years, and moved on a location once they had employees who knew the area and its residents well. When the bank found the right people, including branch manager Richard Gray, and veteran operations manager Kathie Rockwell, the bank’s new branch opened in leased office space near Fashion Place Mall. At the time, it was the bank’s northern-most branch. During this time of expansion, a cross-functional group of employees created a mission statement for the bank to ensure that new employees and managers would provide the communities they served with the customer service people had grown to love about Bank of American Fork.
Sandy Branch October 1, 2001
For its ninth branch, Bank of American Fork departed from its usual process when it purchased a building and a portion of a portfolio from Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Bank, Sandy. The board and management had been weighing the option of purchasing a branch versus starting from scratch. Morgan Stanley Dean Witter announced its building, loans and accounts were up for sale and the Bank of American Fork purchased a part of this, continuing its foray into Salt Lake County.
Riverton Branch March 19, 2007
The bank’s 11th branch opened. Associates from West Jordan and Riverton generated enough local business to open a branch. Management and the board were
determined to have a strong presence in south Salt Lake communities, so business development officers were hired to identify business opportunities in this area.
These employees generated enough business from the West Jordan and Riverton areas that Bank of American Fork could open a branch in Riverton, managed by Kirk
Woolley and Chaille Mackie, the branch and operations managers still overseeing the Riverton branch today.
Spanish Fork Branch June 1997
The seventh branch opened as a loan-production offi¬ce in a leased offi¬ce space in June 1997. On March 30, 1998 the o¬ffice opened as a full-branch, and then
moved into its new, permanent building on April 19, 1999. Spanish Fork was a small community that was not experiencing nearly the population growth as Lehi,
Highland and Pleasant Grove. But its neighbor, Springville, had been developing steadily over the decades, and board members saw Spanish Fork as the next corridor
for development. Spanish Fork was far enough from any other branch location that few of its residents were Bank of American Fork customers, but close enough that
many were aware of the community bank. The branch is now run by Branch Manager Bill Beck and Operations Manager Lorraine Dedrickson, who, combined, have over 50
years of banking experience.
Pleasant Grove Branch May 5, 1997
The sixth branch opened in Pleasant Grove, with support from officials who wanted to see an increase in commercial development. The Orem branch was barely keeping up with its growth and the bank soon realized it needed a new branch to alleviate traffic at the Orem branch. At the time, Pleasant Grove lacked commercial development and did not receive as much tax revenue. Officials were supportive of a new Bank of American Fork branch in Pleasant Grove to improve the situation. The Pleasant Grove branch opened just a few months after Lehi opened. Another interesting note: Later, Pleasant Grove Operations Manager Michael Miner was the first male operations manager bank wide.
Lehi Branch December 9, 1996
The Lehi branch opened and was sta¬ffed with employees who lived or grew up in Lehi, and interior decorators used a pioneer theme to connect to community history.
Board members were eager for new branches to be a part of the communities they served, and not just a transplant branch of an American Fork bank. Before opening the
Lehi branch, Steve Swenson and other bankers that were a part of the Lehi community came to Bank of American Fork, and many customers followed. The team garnered
enough business to establish a branch in Lehi, and the bank purchased a commercial lot in a shopping development on Main Street. Lehi’s population doubled between
1990 and 2000 and the branch grew to outperform both the American Fork and Alpine branches in its first year.
Highland Branch August 1, 1995
Highland’s population grew 60 percent in the ‘90s, and Bank of American Fork opened its fourth branch. Loans and deposits were growing swiftly in Bank of American
Fork branches and the board began discussing building another branch. A Utah County real-estate and business developer approached the board and offered to sell a plot
of land in Highland. Bank of American Fork purchased the land, began building in 1994 and opened its fourth branch in 1995. With the opening of the Highland branch,
the bank implemented a new type of branch management teams. Operations managers—previously operations specialists—and branch managers—who specialized in lending—worked
equally for the success of the branch.
Orem Branch October 4, 1993
In 1993, the bank’s third branch opened in a trailer, then in In 1997 it got its permanent home by University Mall, where tens of thousands of cars pass the blue
glass building daily. When it opened as a loan office, Robert Chatfield and Dave Hatton worked tirelessly to grow, sometimes working more than 10 hours a day.
They hired an additional loan officer, Lane Wilson. During this period the bank was responsible for financing many projects that developed both Provo and Orem,
including apartment complexes near Brigham Young University and Utah Valley State College, strip malls, office parks, government buildings and hospital. The
branch first opened in a trailer on the edge of its current lot on the corner of University Mall in Orem and now the blue glass building is a landmark part of
Alpine Branch March 8, 1974
Alpine branch opened, one of the first in Utah to provide 24-hour teller services through an ATM. Alpine and American Fork were tied socially and physically
and in 1963, the bank learned that 60 percent of Alpine residents already banked with Bank of American Fork. When the Alpine branch opened, its Alpine
customers were pleased that they did not need to go all the way to American Fork to deposit checks or withdraw cash, especially since the new branch was the
only bank in Alpine. There were only a handful of people who worked at the Alpine branch, so everyone knew each other well. They would often organize potlucks
or bring a platter of something to share, which fostered good relationships among employees. Bank of American Fork started in 1913 by investing in its community.
Now the bank began extending that to the community it was serving in Alpine, by loaning money to Alpine city to improve the local water system and funding other
commercial loans to fix wells, open grocery stores and other family-owned and local businesses.