LAREDO, Texas (SEPT. 27, 2018)- Ignacio Urrabazo, President and Chief Executive Officer of Commerce Bank, was invited to speak at the Federal Reserve Bank's third annual Banking and the Economy: A Forum for Minorities in Banking in North Carolina in September. The forum is organized by The Federal Reserve System and is presented annually at one of twelve regional Federal Reserve Bank branches. The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City branch in Charlotte, North Carolina, hosted this year's event. Also known as "The Fed," it is the central bank of the United States and the backbone of the nation's financial system. It conducts monetary policy, supervises and regulates banks, sets the framework for interest rates and credit, and pursues flexible, safe and stable financial and consumer markets. This year's theme was Minority Excellence in the Banking Industry and addressed economic conditions, banking, diversity and inclusion, FinTech and leadership strategies.
Senior level and high middle management minority bank leaders from across the country attended the event, designed to provide leadership, networking and professional development opportunities. Urrabazo spoke on the moderated panel "Leadership Lessons from the Top: A Continued Discussion on What You Really Need to Lead," sharing his professional experience leading Commerce Bank and his personal efforts in the local community. Urrabazo is recognized for his expertise in minority banking, his influence in community and small business growth, and for trailblazing the path for minority bankers. As a voice for Hispanic communities, he discussed his leadership traits and the opportunities in today's ever-changing economic environment that affect young minority bankers; offering sound advice to industry professionals.
"I was honored to share my experience leading Commerce Bank and was excited to participate in such an important panel. My personal story, professional drive, core values, and deep responsibility to my community and family serve as my compass to success," Urrabazo said.
The invitation to participate was an honor, as Urrabazo sat alongside some of the nation's most prominent bankers, such as Robert S. Kaplan, the president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, TX. As leaders in banking, the participants are committed to fostering excellence in minority banks and advancing minority leaders. Urrabazo has established himself as an anchor to these causes.
With more than 48 years of banking experience, including 35 years as president of Laredo's Commerce Bank, Urrabazo is respected for his economic development impact in the city of Laredo, Texas and his contribution to community banks. He has served as the chairman of both the National Bankers Association and the Texas Bankers Association (TBA). He is a former member of the American Bankers Association's Government Relations council and worked to advance policy and legislation in banking in Washington, D.C. He was also one of 15 bank presidents from across the country to serve on the FDIC's Advisory Committee on Community Banking. He has testified before the U.S. Congress on two occasions on the passage of NAFTA and the impact of the Dodd Frank Act on community banking. He has also been involved in U.S.-Mexico border financial services and relationships since taking a leadership role in the creation of Commerce Bank in 1983. In 2012, Urrabazo was named a University of Texas at El Paso Distinguished Alumnus.
Commerce Bank is a member of International Bancshares Corporation (NASDAQ: IBOC), a $12.0 billion multi-bank financial holding company headquartered in Laredo, Texas, with 191 facilities and more than 289 ATMs serving 90 communities in Texas and Oklahoma. Commerce Bank's commitment to "We Make It Happen" reflects the bank's dedication to the growth and success of both the community and customers it serves. Commerce Bank has been serving the Laredo community since 1982 with a retail branch network of four locations. MEMBER FDIC / INTERNATIONAL BANCSHARES CORPORATION. Visit us on our YouTube channel, IBCBankWeDoMore. More information is available at ibc.com.