Matthew Wendling is taking on a new challenge in his 25-year banking career.
Wendling, 43, has opened a Wichita mortgage office for Bank of Oklahoma, a nearly $9 billion Tulsa-based bank.
So the Wichita mortgage branch manager has hired a staff of 10 people. He expects to adds four more mortgage officers in the coming months.
The mortgage office is in temporary space at 8110 E. 32nd St. North while he awaits the renovation of another section of the building for permanent offices.
Wendling was most recently senior vice president of Bank of America Home Loans.
He was with Bank of America and its predecessors in Wichita — Bank IV and Eastside Bank and Trust — for nearly all of his career.
He started as a teller at Eastside Bank after graduating from Bishop Carroll Catholic High School. He eventually worked in several areas of Eastside and Bank IV, including in wire transfers and international services.
He said he's only been on the mortgage side of the banking industry for 11 of those 25 years.
But the mortgage business, he said, is what he enjoys the most.
What's at the top of your to-do list at Bank of Oklahoma?
"To get in a permanent space. That will be in the first quarter, I'm hoping. And to get back into the Wichita Area Association of Realtors, the Wichita Area Builders (Association) and the Wichita chamber."
Are there parallels between Bank of Oklahoma and Bank IV?
"It is the concept that localized leadership knows the market (and has a voice in making decisions affecting the local market)."
Are you satisfied with staying in the mortgage area, or are there other parts of banking such as commercial lending or treasury management that you would still like to try?
"Mortgage is the piece I enjoy the most. It's where I'd like to stay."
"You get to listen to the customer and identify what they are really looking for. The most exciting part is helping them to put the puzzle together. It's a journey, a timeline."
Up until now, most of your banking career was spent with Bank IV and Bank of America. But there was a period when you weren't working there. Explain that.
"When Bank IV was bought out, I decided to leave the bank and was with US Bank for a while. And then they were sold to Intrust Bank. I worked with Intrust for a year and then the opportunity to come back to Bank of America as the consumer market manager opened up. I came back to Bank of America in '99 and was in that role for a year when the opportunity to manage the mortgage side came open in Wichita."