Former Competitor Joins Bell’s Correspondent Team


After 11 years of competing against Bell Bank for correspondent banking deals, Todd Holzwarth decided it was time to make a career change.

“I found Bell to be an extremely strong competitor, to the point where I lost more deals than I won,” Todd points out. “It’s the adage, ‘If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.’ Bell’s team is bigger, stronger and faster. Joining this team has given me the resources to help community banks help their customers more effectively.”


As Bell’s newest correspondent banker, Todd works with bank leadership teams on participation loans, bank stock financing or whatever they might need in a correspondent banking partner.


“I like helping community bankers help their communities,” he remarks. “I grew up in and still live in a small community, so I understand the bankers’ mission to help their communities thrive while trying to compete with the big guys.”


Based in Parker, S.D., Todd covers South Dakota, North Dakota, and parts of Iowa and Minnesota, working with senior lenders, bank presidents and chief financial officers to find out how Bell can help their banks.


An avid football fan, satellite radio helps him pass the time as he easily puts 1,000 miles a week on his car, traveling between community banks.


“It’s nice to partner with community banks to help them help their customers,” Todd notes. “It’s rewarding. They’re great people, and they’re good partners.


After earning his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Black Hills State University and his master’s degree in business administration from the University of South Dakota, Todd went through a credit training program at Community First Bank in Fargo. Starting as a front line lender at Community First in Vermillion, S.D., he worked mainly in agricultural, commercial and consumer lending.


“Working in lending is a rewarding career,” Todd comments. “It helps people accomplish their goals and dreams.”


Following several years of working in traditional banking, Todd went to work for United Bankers’ Bank in 2008 as a correspondent lender.


“At that time, loan participations and bank stock loans were both risky ventures,” Todd remembers. “Everything was a tough deal; we said no a lot more often than we said yes. Half of my time was spent collecting loans to other banks and loans UBB had purchased. It was more collecting at that time than lending.”


Todd stayed with United Bankers’ Bank until March of 2019, when he joined Bell.


“I’m just excited to be on board here, doing the things l love doing and having the team and resources to do it effectively,” Todd affirms.


Over the last few weeks, Todd has been working with correspondent banker Gene Uher, who is retiring after 51 years in banking – the last 10 with Bell, to make the transition as smooth as possible for our correspondent banking partners.


“Gene has a tremendous network of contacts,” Todd remarks. “He knows everybody everywhere. Working with him the last few weeks has been rewarding, making the transition easier for me and more importantly, making it more comfortable for our customers.”


Outside of work, Todd enjoys watching and listening to football – especially the Chicago Bears. He also likes fishing, biking and spending time with his friends and family. And even though he travels a lot for work, he still enjoys traveling with his family. 


“I know all the good places to stop,” he notes. “I could take you to the quaintest ‘greasy spoons’ in North and South Dakota.”


Todd lives in Parker, S.D., with his wife, Jaci, and their son, Landri. Their daughters, Haley and Josie, are attending North Dakota State University.

▶ If you’d like to learn more about how Todd can work help your bank succeed, call him at 605-321-9197.