New London, WI – First State Bank president and CEO, Bob Van Asten, recently announced that First State Bancshares, Inc. completed the purchase of Pioneer Bancorp, Inc. The transaction closed on October 9, 2019. Pioneer Bancorp, Inc. is the parent company of Pioneer Bank.
The purchase paves the way for Pioneer Bank offices to merge with First State Bank and operate under the First State Bank name starting on February 24, 2020. Until then, these offices will continue to operate as Pioneer Bank.
When the merger is complete, First State Bank will have thirteen offices and total assets of approximately $450 million. First State Bank’s current locations are in New London, Clintonville, Manawa, Waupaca, Cecil, and Rudolph. Pioneer Bank has offices in the north central Wisconsin communities of Auburndale, Greenwood, Marshfield, Rozellville, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, and Withee.
“This is a very positive step for both of our organizations,” said Van Asten. “It secures our future as an independent community bank that is committed to local decision making and serving our communities.”
When the merger is complete, Jeff Whitrock, president of Pioneer Bank will join First State Bank as senior vice president/chief market development and sales officer. He will lead the growth and development of the bank’s business and personal banking across its entire market area. Jim Nowak, Pioneer Bank’s chief financial officer, will also join First State Bank as senior vice president and chief operations officer, responsible for overseeing all aspects of operations. Van Asten will continue to lead First State Bank as president and CEO.
“We are especially excited to welcome the Pioneer Bank leadership and employees to our team,” added Van Asten. “People bank with people they know and trust.”