The Decorah Bank & Cresco Bank Story

A Message from Leadership


Just as shopping locally is good for our local economy – supporting small businesses who are neighbors and friends, so too is banking locally. We know you have many choices about where to bank, both locally and online, so we work hard to earn and retain your business and trust.

The Bank had a solid 2017 with record loan growth fueled by some large ag and commercial projects. We couldn’t finance such initiatives without our good depositing customers which we appreciate! Thank you for trusting us to keep your money safe. When your deposit is made in our Bank that money multiplies many times over in the local economy as the bank provides loans.

Let’s say you make a $10,000 deposit, the bank holds approximately 10% in reserves to meet the needs of depositors wanting to withdraw funds and then lends out the other 90%. This $9,000 loan eventually makes its way back into the bank in the form of $9,000 in deposits. Banks hold 10% in reserve again and lend 90% of the $9,000, or $8,100 out. And this goes on over and over – $8,100, $7,290, $6,561 and so on. The original $10,000 that went into the banking system, through the issuance of credit, places nearly $100,000 into the economy. This is a simplification of what’s called the multiplier effect, and is how a bank works.

Our commitment to you is to offer excellent service and competitive pricing. If ever you think we failed in our promise, please call on us or any employee-owner and we will discuss your concerns with you.

Thank you for banking with us and we wish you a happy and prosperous 2018!


Joe, Donna, & Ben

More than Your Traditional Bank

Our Philosophy

Because we are not owned by outside investors who are typically interested in next quarters’ earnings, we are able to think differently. The bank is owned by the Grimstad family and its employees through an Employee Stock Ownership Plan so the decisions we make are long term in nature. There is no need to focus on short term earnings because the bank is not for sale. We believe that by treating our customers and employees fairly and with respect they deserve, the bank will prosper in the long run.

Banking, like all other industries, has become competitive. We understand that we must provide excellent service, convenience, competitive pricing and services to maintain customer relationships. We make every effort to do this, while also doing our part to help the community prosper. Our bank, directors, officers, and employees are committed to giving back to the community by offering their time, talent, and resources to many worthy causes. Our goal is to add value to our client relationships by identifying their needs and then helping them reach their goals.

Being a good steward of our environment is one of our core values. Since the 1990’s we’ve learned how to take better care of our environment at home and in the work place. People started to take notice and since then we share what we learn and do along the way. Today, we have our own energy loan specialists on staff to finance energy saving and renewable energy projects.

Our History

  • Chartered by the State of Iowa in 1935, Decorah Bank & Trust Company was started by a group of Decorah citizens as Security Trust and Savings Bank.
  • During its first year, the bank was sold to a bank liquidator named Ray Kaster, who successfully managed it for the next 24 years.
  • In 1960, Harold Grimstad purchased the bank and changed its name to Security Bank & Trust Company.
  • In 1978, Larry Grimstad, Harold’s son, managed and in 2000, the bank changed its name to Decorah Bank & Trust Company.
  • In 2000 and 2002, Ben and Joseph Grimstad joined the organization and became the third generation of Grimstads and continue to manage the bank.
  • In 2007, Cresco Bank & Trust Co. became a division of Decorah Bank & Trust Co. Donna Thomas is serving as the bank president of the Cresco location and has been employed at the bank since 1981.

Contact us directly at (563) 382-9661 or (563) 547-2244
to see how we can help you.