“While I love the work, there’s not a lot of runway left out there, and I want to do some flying,” says Dick Story, Howard Bank’s Senior Vice President, Director of Community Relations & Government Affairs, and Business Development Liaison, of his retirement at the end of the year. The face (and instantly recognizable voice) of Howard Bank for the last several years, Dick’s deep ties to the community and nearly infinite economic development expertise have made him an invaluable member of the Howard Bank team.
Committed to emcee at least 35 events in 2017, Dick will continue to serve as an ambassador for Howard Bank, working in a consultative capacity with the bank. With his wife also retiring at the end of 2016, there are home improvements, home repairs, and hometown duties looming large for Dick, who hopes to be a burden to his wife.
In addition to hometown requests to run for local political office and manage a county economic development committee, there are requests for economic development help from counties further away. He’s trying to avoid all the pitfalls, and craft a retirement that satisfies both familial and professional aspirations.
The community affairs duties that Dick has been managing will be delegated to an already formed committee, that can be acutely community-focused in a way that Dick cannot from his home on the eastern shore.
“We’re supporting roughly 100 non-profits; all of that [legwork] can be done by someone else. And I’m going to miss that,” but the needs of the non-profits served by this function are too important to discharge in any other way. “As a community bank, we want to grow the community because as it grows, we grow.” According to Dick, “All of these systems will be in place when I leave on December 30.”
As to pursuits that he has not been able to engage in with his full-time bank responsibilities, Dick says, “Right now in my new old hometown, I’m putting up an HO train set in the town hall for a Christmas garden. Wait ‘til I’m there full-time; I’ve been using the last four weekends to set up the garden.”
Parting advice or commentary from Dick to his colleagues is thus: “I’m your worst recurring nightmare. I’m still going to be tripping through our offices in the region, disrupting whatever work they’re trying to get done, and then leaving. I’m still going to be around because of my rolodex. In fact, Mary Ann hired me, not because she was fond of me, but because I had an enormous rolodex. And that’s still valuable. So, I make introductions, and all of that can continue. So, the advice is – don’t write the obituary yet. The more things change, the more they stay the same.”
At 71, Dick Story is looking forward to “retirement,” in whatever form it finally takes.
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