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Left, Roger Gadd, president and senior trust officer and Dwight Rahmeyer, senior trust counsel and CEO, Trust Company of the Ozarks
Left, Roger Gadd, president and senior trust officer and Dwight Rahmeyer, senior trust counsel and CEO, Trust Company of the Ozarks

1990s Decade Award Finalist: Trust Company of the Ozarks

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Trust Company of the Ozarks has a simple philosophy for achieving growth and withstanding economic difficulties.

“If we do the right thing time and time again, then our clients benefit, and the business will follow,” says Senior Trust Counsel and CEO Dwight Rahmeyer says. “It’s really not a bad business plan for any business.”

Trust Company of the Ozarks is bound by the Missouri Prudent Investor Act to treat its clients a certain way.

“We’re required (to meet) the highest standard, like a doctor-patient or lawyer-client. Fiduciary (means) that we can only act in your best interest,” Rahmeyer adds. “We can do well by doing good.”

It’s a practice that seems to be working.

In October 2007, the company’s assets under management hit a high-water mark of $441 million.
They fell in March 2009 to their lowest point, at $362 million.

So far in 2010, however, assets are on the upswing, Rahmeyer says, with $489 million in assets and 973 active accounts as of the end of April.

“We are now managing more assets in a recession than we ever have,” Rahmeyer says. “And that’s partly (because) we’re not only doing business (with) banks, our best customers, but we’ve been in the community for a long time. People know us … and we’re stable, and we emphasize safety and security of our clients’ money.”

Trust Company of the Ozarks was founded in 1998 just shortly after Rahmeyer, Roger Gadd, president and senior trust officer and Jay Burchfield, chairman of the board, left Boatmen’s Bancshares in 1997.

“At that time we serviced a lot from Springfield and we knew that there was a lot of business to be had, and a lot of need for trust investment services, not just in Springfield but also in the Ozarks,” Rahmeyer says. “So that was the premise that we formed the company, with zero assets and just what we thought was a good business model.”

Rahmeyer said when the three then started Trust Company of the Ozarks, their premise was to be the main facilitator for the trust and development departments of community banks. Today, Trust Company of the Ozarks works with 48 community banks throughout the Ozarks.

“If you look at all of our accounts you’ll find multiple beneficiaries within a trust account, and there’ll be investment management accounts,” Rahmeyer says. “Just from a daily impact of actually managing that much money – almost half a billion dollars – is a significant amount of money.”

Rahmeyer says Trust Company of the Ozarks pays out an average of $5 million a month in dividends.

“That obviously flows back into the local economy because all of our local investors are in the Ozarks,” he says.

And then, there’s the money the company puts back into the local economy.

“From a purely economic standpoint, we are a small business and we employ 17 individuals now,” Gadd says. “From the salaries that we pay it goes back into the community and it rotates many times over.”

In 2005, Trust Company of the Ozarks moved to a newly constructed 11,000-square-foot building, providing jobs for the local building sector. That’s in line with other ways the company connects with local businesses.

“Our printing company is local, our advertising agency is local and our computer tech is local,” Gadd says. “We are … a local business supporting local businesses.”[[In-content Ad]]

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