George M. Bradford, who helped lead Fort Worth-based The National Bank of Texas for decades, will retire in April as the chairman of the bank’s holding company, Horizon Bankshares. The announcement was made by Wade Donnell, the bank’s current CEO, along with the board of directors.
Bradford’s banking career started in 1972 at The First National Bank of Fort Worth. In 1982, he was named executive vice president of a community bank in North Texas and was promoted to president two years later. He was appointed president and CEO, and elected to the board, of The National Bank of Texas in 1997. His commitment to growth propelled the bank’s success. The National Bank of Texas’ total assets have grown from $53 million and now approach $400 million. When Bradford started at the bank, loans were $16 million; today, they are approaching $300 million. Bradford retired as president and CEO in 2001 and was elected chairman of the board, a position he held until 2019 when he became chairman of Horizon Bankshares Inc.
“George commonly tells that his aspiration to become a lender was so that he could go home at 3 p.m., but those of you who know him realize this was not the case,” according to a press release announcing his upcoming retirement. “George was on call for his customers round the clock.”
He earned a BBA degree from Texas Christian University in 1964. He also attended the National Commercial Lending School. Bradford has served on the board of the Texas Bankers Association and has been chosen Tarrant County “Banker of the Year.” He has also served in Washington, D.C., on American Bankers Association committees. He is still active in civic affairs in Fort Worth and the Mid-Cities, and actively involved with his alma mater.
“Over the course of his banking career, George has touched the lives of many people—both customers and employees,” the press release states. “His big heart is like sunshine to all who know him. His endeavor is always to make a difference in people’s lives and that is why he has been such a successful banker in Tarrant County. Bankers like George have helped grow Fort Worth and surrounding areas to what it is today.
For those of you who would like to drop George a congratulatory note, he can be reached at GBradford1964@gmail.com.
Established in 1973, The National Bank of Texas has branches in Fort Worth, Hurst, Burleson and Azle.