Terry Daughters - Chief Credit Officer & Board Member
After eighteen years with Peoples Bank, Terry Daughters, Executive Vice President and longtime Chief Credit Officer retired in May. A native of Bellingham, Terry began his banking career in 1976. “It was definitely a different experience back then than it is today,” Terry says, reflecting on all the changes that have taken place in the industry since he first started out.
Terry joined Peoples Bank in 1999, attracted by the Bank’s commitment to community. “The bank I worked at previously was based on the East Coast and wasn’t all that involved in the community,” Terry says. “I think it’s really important that we give back to the cities and towns where our customers live and work in any way we can. It is one of the things that drew me to Peoples Bank, and I can proudly say that for this and many other reasons, coming here was an excellent move.”
Having spent much of his time at Peoples Bank working in commercial lending, Terry considers the satisfaction of helping local businesses to thrive as being one of the highlights of his career. “It was so rewarding to work with small businesses and try to come up with solutions to help them to grow and to meet their financial goals. It was like being in business — but I got to work with thirty or so different businesses because they were all my customers! As a banker you get to know these businesses – and the people behind them – very deeply. It’s been incredibly satisfying to then bring Peoples Bank into the picture to help them achieve their financial goals.”
In more recent years, Terry’s career shifted into credit administration. While this constituted a significant change from the more customer-facing roles he’d previously held at the bank, Terry found great purpose in managing this aspect of the Bank’s business. “I had to adjust to that change,” he says, “but it’s been very satisfying in terms of the outcomes we’ve achieved.” Terry notes that the last few years have yielded strong organic growth for the Bank and feels confident that this trend will continue.
Despite all the changes that have taken place in banking and in Western Washington since Terry joined Peoples Bank in 1999, he notes that certain things have been remarkably consistent. “The Bank’s core values of honesty, integrity and respect are a constant barometer against which we make decisions and evaluate ourselves.”
Asked whether he has any advice he’d offer someone just starting out in the banking industry, Terry stresses the importance of mentorship and of pursuing as many different job experiences as possible. “Trying new things will help you figure out what you enjoy and what you really want to do,” Terry says, “and then you do that! Because you’re not going to be able to accomplish really great things just working on something part-time. Be patient and get as many life experiences as possible. The promotions will come!”
While Terry has some definite plans for his retirement — including traveling, spending more time with his five grandkids, getting out on the water in his fishing boat, and continuing his decades of involvement with the Bellingham Central Lions Club — he will not be cutting his ties with Peoples Bank. As a member of the Peoples Bank Board of Directors, Terry will continue to be involved in the life and operations of the Bank. “If I can be a positive force and help in directing the bank,” Terry says, “I plan on continuing to do that.”