Austin Bank celebrates Penry’s retirement

Mike Penry (right) accepts a certificate of recognition on behalf of State Rep. Ernest Bailes at Penry's retirement celebration on Sept. 30 at Austin Bank. The longtime banker in the Cleveland area is retiring to spend more time with his wife and family. Presenting the certificate is Austin Bank's Vice President/Retail Market Manager Tasha Childress.

A retirement celebration was held on Thursday, Sept. 30, for Mike Penry at Austin Bank in Cleveland. Penry, who helped launch the bank more than two years ago, is stepping down as relationship manager to devote more time to his wife, Rhonda, and their family.

Prior to joining Austin Bank, Penry was vice president of the former First Bank and Trust in Cleveland. He also previously served as a Cleveland city councilman and is active with the Cleveland Lions Club.

The celebration also included the presentation of a certificate of recognition from State Rep. Ernest Bailes (Texas-District 18).

Lowell Little, regional president of Austin Bank, credits Penry with helping in the successful launch of the Cleveland branch.

“Mike brought immediate credibility to the bank through introducing us to people and his community involvement, and he’s not shy about asking for business. We are sad to see him but we know he is ready. Rhonda is ready, so it’s a perfect time,” Little said.

His departure is well-timed for the bank as it recently hired another longtime banker in the Cleveland community, Terri Manners, who is stepping into Penry’s former role.

“We kind of borrowed her from friendly competition. What she brings to the table is exactly what Mike brought to the table. With his plans to retire, the timing couldn’t have been more perfect,” Little said.

The Penrys, who have been married for 50 years, are looking forward to planning a renewal of their wedding vows, said Rhonda. She jokingly claims to have a to-do list waiting for him now that he has more time on his hands.

Austin Bank officially opened in April 2019 in an office suite at 901 E. Houston St., next to Cleveland Healthcare Center. In September 2019, the bank broke ground on a new facility at 807 E. Houston St., and opened the bank in 2020.

Guests at the retirement celebration for Mike Penry gather for a group photo after he was presented a certificate of recognition from State Rep. Ernest Bailes’ office.

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