Richard Behnke came to the Bank of Elroy to serve as president. With a deep-seated passion for community banking, Richard pursued a bold vision to make a difference in the rural communities of southwest Wisconsin. He worked closely with Ron Darga to establish Royal Bank and Royal Bancshares, Inc. Together, they subsequently established the first locations under the newly formed holding company in the communities of Elroy, Lone Rock, Avoca, and Spring Green.
Throughout his career, Richard was highly influential in identifying and pursuing strategic growth opportunities for the bank, and was part of every decision to acquire or build a branch location. He retired from the bank in 1999, and served on the Royal Bancshares, Inc. Board of Directors until his death at the age of 87.
Richard’s unmistakable passion for community banking poured out into every area of his career. He took great pride in cultivating relationships with employees and their families. He led with a compassionate and genuine family-first mentality, and valued the exceptional loyalty of the bank’s customers and the communities the bank operates in.
Richard was an extraordinary banker, impactful mentor, true visionary and loyal friend. He believed strongly in the future of community banking, and in the strength of Royal Bank to remain a successful, independent financial institution. We look ahead with pride to carry on the legacy that he established.
Richard’s obituary can be found here.