The Texas Bankers Hall of Fame recently announced that its 2020 honorees will be inducted at the Eighth Annual Texas Bankers Hall of Fame Gala on April 22, 2021, on the campus of Sam Houston State University in Huntsville. Five prestigious bankers—the late James B. Bexley, Lloyd R. Ferguson, William David Lacy, Victor Pierson and Allan James Rasmussen, will be recognized for their positive achievements and many contributions to the banking industry and their communities.
The Texas Bankers Hall of Fame, established by the Smith-Hutson Endowed Chair of Banking at Sam Houston State University, recognizes and honors the accomplishments of outstanding bankers who have made valuable contributions to the banking profession and pioneered the Texas banking industry. The honorees have truly made their industry, communities and state better places.
Dr. James “Jim” B. Bexley
Bexley began his banking career in 1964 when he joined Bank of the Southwest as a trust officer managing oil and gas properties. He rose through the ranks of the and ultimately became the manager of trust operations. His banking career included stops at River Oaks Bank and Trust as chief operations officer, Houston Southwest Bank as president and CEO, First Bank of Houston as president and CEO, Texas Commerce Bank–McAllen as chairman and CEO, Texas Commerce Bank–Corpus Christi as chairman and CEO, United Bank of Memphis as president and CEO, and Cardinal Bancorp and First American Bank of Pennsylvania.
After retiring from Cardinal Bancorp, Bexley joined Sam Houston State University (SHSU) as the Smith Hutson endowed chair of banking and served in that role for 24 years. He developed the curriculum at SHSU for the first four-year accredited BBA degree in banking and financial institutions in the U.S. He also pioneered the curriculum for the university’s executive MBA degree in banking and financial institutions. During Bexley’s tenure with the university, he helped place more than 1,000 students in internships or career positions in banking. While at SHSU, Bexley was awarded the Texas State University System Regents’ Award—the highest recognition given to a professor in the university system. Bexley also served as SHSU’s faculty athletics representative for more than 20 years. In addition, he was a member of the College of Business Administration’s advisory board. Bexley is one of only two non-alumni to receive the Sam Houston State University Alumni Association Service Award.
In addition to serving at the university, Bexley was a consultant for community banks all over the U.S. and was a virtual fellow for the U.S. State Department in the Office of Threat Finance Countermeasures, Bureau of Economic & Business Affairs. He was a former member of the board of directors for the Federal Reserve Bank for the 11th District in Dallas, serving as chairman of the audit committee and a member of the executive committee. In 2016, Bexley was awarded the Texas Bankers Association’s first Lifetime Achievement Award. He was a deacon at his church and taught Sunday school.
Bexley authored five books, four of them on banking: Bank Management, The Bank Director, Directors Duties & Responsibilities in Financial Institutions and Selling Financial Products—A Practical Guide for Successful Bank Sales. In addition, he authored or co-authored 56 professional journal articles on banking and financial services.
Bexley attended the University of Texas on a football and baseball scholarship. He served on active duty in the U.S. Army from 1954 to 1957 and in the Army Reserves thereafter. During his tenure in the army, he attained the rank of major. He earned a BBA degree from the University of Texas–El Paso, an MBA degree from the University of Houston, a juris doctorate degree from Blackstone School of Law and a PhD in bank marketing from Stirling University in Scotland.
Bexley passed away October 18, 2019, at the age of 85. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Elsie Murphy Bexley, and two children, Byron Bexley (and his wife, Debbie) and Tammie Risica (and her husband, Tony), eight grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
Dr. Lloyd R. Ferguson
Ferguson was born in Charlie, Texas, on October 7, 1925. He obtained his bachelor’s degree from Howard Payne University, master’s degree from Texas Christian University and doctoral degree from the University of Houston. He served in the Army Air Corps as a B-17 gunman in World War II. He served for 27 years as the superintendent of schools of Danbury ISD, Pearland ISD and Clear Creek ISD. However, he unabashedly states that his most significant professional achievement occurred in 1959 when Ferguson and a group of local business leaders successfully organized and chartered Pearland State Bank. In 1964, he was elected chairman of the board, a position he continues to hold today. In 1982, he assumed the additional title of president and CEO.
In 1994, under Ferguson’s leadership, a holding company was created and the bank’s shareholders purchased First National Bank of Alvin. Upon the completion of the purchase, Ferguson was elected chairman of the board and CEO of First National Bank of Alvin and continues today in that position. Both Pearland State Bank and First National Bank of Alvin have consistently been recognized as exemplary banks by numerous publications.
Ferguson enjoyed serving on the board of TIB–The Independent BankersBank NA for several years and was active in banking industry trade organizations.
As an active member of the Pearland community, he was an original organizer of the Pearland Chamber of Commerce, serving as one of its first presidents. He has been a member and served in leadership positions in the Lions Club, Rotary Club, Order of Jesters, Shriners, First United Methodist Church of Pearland and numerous other organizations.
He was married to Rosalie Briggs Ferguson for 65 years until her death in 2010.
William David Lacy
Lacy is a fourth-generation bank president in Waco. His great grandfather, also named William David Lacy, was president of Citizens National Bank of Waco from 1909 to 1917. His grandfather was president from 1919 to 1946 and his father, Walter G. Lacy Jr., was president from 1946 to 1971. Walter G. Lacy Jr. was inducted into the Texas Bankers Hall of Fame in 2013.
William David Lacy has been president of Community Bank & Trust in Waco since 1999. His 42-year banking career started full-time in 1979 after working seven summers prior to that date. He worked as a teller and in numerous operational areas, including audit, IT and marketing, prior to becoming a commercial lender. From 1982 to 1986, he worked for RepublicBank Corp. and continued working for NationsBank through 1990. Since 1990, he has worked for Community Bank & Trust in Waco.
He has served on more than 100 boards in and around Waco and as president of more than 50 of those boards, some of which include the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce, Waco Industrial Foundation, Texas Sports Hall of Fame and Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth. Lacy has served twice on the Texas Bankers Association board during his career, the second time on the TBA executive committee (2015–16). He has served in various capacities for the American Bankers Association as well, currently serving on the association’s core contract committee. In his capacity on various banking association committees, his passion in recent years has been the recruitment of new talent to banking. He has been supportive of Sam Houston State University and Bexley’s efforts in the past decade in this regard.
Lacy graduated from Baylor University in 1979 with a degree in accounting and finance and was a four-year letterman on the Baylor golf team.
He married Nancy Derrick in 1986 and they have a daughter, Carter.
Pierson is chairman, president and CEO of Galveston-based Moody Bank and Moody Bancshares Inc. He has been a stalwart supporter of education. At Southern Methodist University, he chairs the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking Foundation board of trustees and formerly served as dean of bankers for the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking. At Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School Commercial Banking Program, he serves on the advisory board’s executive committee and the board of visitors for Texas A&M University at Galveston. He also chairs the University of Texas medical branch president’s cabinet and taught accounting classes for 16 years at Galveston College.
Pierson is deeply involved in volunteer activities on local, state and national levels. He has served as mayor of the City of Jamaica Beach, Texas, is a presidential appointee to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Gulf of Mexico Commission and previously was a gubernatorial appointee to the Coastal Coordination Council.
He is a past chairman of the Texas Bankers Association, Independent Bankers Association of Texas board member and vice chairman of TIB–The Independent BankersBank NA.
Pierson was born in Abilene and grew up in Albany. He graduated from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls with an undergraduate degree in economics and graduate studies in finance. A student government and fraternity leader in college, he was named one of America’s Outstanding Young Men in 1980.
He entered banking in Wichita Falls and moved to Galveston in 1985 to join Moody Bank. The Moody family pioneered Texas banking—Col. William L. Moody was granted the state’s second national banking charter in 1866—and Pierson is only the fifth chairman in the family’s 153-year banking history. Today, Moody Bank is among Texas’ largest privately owned banks. Total assets have more than doubled over the past decade and its trust department is one of the largest domiciled in Texas.
Pierson has played wide-ranging leadership roles in numerous organizations, including the Galveston Economic Development Partnership, Galveston County Economic Alliance Foundation, Galveston Regional Chamber of Commerce, United Way of Galveston, Galveston Historical Foundation, Galveston County Economic Alliance, Galveston County Mayors and Councilmembers Association, The Grand 1894 Opera House, Galveston Island Rotary Club, Galveston Artillery Club, 50 Club of Galveston County, Prevent Blindness, Bay Area Coastal Protection Alliance, Historic Downtown Strand Seaport Partnership, Coastal Windstorm Insurance Coalition and Gulf Coast Community Protection and Recovery District.
Pierson and his wife, Janice, have been married for 24 years. They have three children—Frankie Touchy (Jami), Laurie Popovich, Lindsay Touchy—three grandsons and one granddaughter.
Allan James “Jimmy” Rasmussen
Rasmussen is in his 33rd year as president and CEO of Galveston-based HomeTown Bank. He attended Sam Houston State University (SHSU) from 1970 to 1974. He taught business classes at SHSU as a graduate assistant and for an additional year as a member of the department of business faculty after completing his master’s degree in finance.
Rasmussen began his banking career in 1975 with American Bank in Huntsville. He moved back to his hometown of Texas City in 1978 to work for Texas First Bank and taught night classes in local community colleges and at Texas A&M University–Galveston for more than 10 years.
His community involvement includes past president and 33-year member of the Rotary Club of Galveston Island. Rasmussen also served as an elected trustee for 12 years with the Texas City ISD board of trustees. He served as the chairman for the Texas City/La Marque Chamber of Commerce in 1987, as well as many years on the finance committee of his church—St. Mary of the Miraculous Medal—in Texas City. Rasmussen is a past chairman and founding board member for the Galveston Economic Development Partnership and presently serves on the executive committee.
Rasmussen was elected as a class A director with the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas in 2012 for a three-year term and was re-elected in 2015 for an additional three-year term. During his terms, he served on the audit, governance, and budget committees.
Rasmussen served as chairman of the Independent Bankers of Texas (2009–10). He is also a former director for the Independent Community Bankers of America.
He received the Rotary Club Vocational Award for “Service in the Work Place” in 1991 and was awarded two Paul Harris Fellow recognitions from Rotary International. Rasmussen was inducted into the Texas City ISD Hall of Honor in 2013.
Rasmussen was married for 47 years to his wife, Diana, who passed away in February 2020. They raised two children—Allan Rasmussen, Jr. (and his wife, Aimee) and Allison Rasmussen McCormick (and her husband, Chuck)—who blessed them with seven grandchildren.