Houston-based Central Bank has hired Mohammad Tariq to serve as executive vice president of commercial lending. A longtime financial professional who has called Houston home for 35 years, Tariq joined the bank in February. In his new role, he helps to oversee commercial lending practices and general operations, and will play a key role in Central Bank’s expansion into local niche markets.
Tariq has spent much of his career focused on financial services within Asian and Indian/Pakistani communities, making him uniquely positioned to further Central Bank’s efforts to reach customers in yet untapped areas. Prior to joining Central Bank, he served as regional president and regional chief banking officer for Hanmi Bank. There he headed up nationwide initiatives covering nine states and focused on aiding the company’s expansion into niche markets—particularly Southeast Asian communities and subcommunities. In addition, Tariq’s past work includes serving as chief lending officer at MetroBank NA (now East West Bank), the nation’s largest minority depository financial institution. He went on to become executive vice president and chief loan officer at Golden Bank NA.
Tariq earned his graduate banking education from the University of Pennsylvania Stonier Graduate School of Banking and also holds a leadership certification from the Wharton School of Business.
As with any working relationship, Tariq says, growth into new markets hinges on forming connections, getting to know the other individual and determining how your strengths can help them achieve their goals. “At the end of the day, it’s all about providing great customer service,” he says, noting he still keeps in touch with some customers he worked with 20 years ago.
As Houston’s longest-serving independent bank, the bank has recently expanded its online and mobile offerings to meet customers’ high-tech needs. It has also moved into new Houston neighborhoods to better serve area businesses. In January, the company opened a branch in the Lower Heights district mixed-use development.
“Even in a city as large as Houston, we work hard to offer a friendly, small-town feel,” says Robert Mrlik, president and CEO. “Our primary focus will always be on what we offer our clients and on what we give back to the community. Tariq holds strong to those same ideals and we know he is a wonderful addition to the team.”
Established in 1956, Central Bank provides business and personal banking services from four full-service branches across Houston.