Business Q & A

Aaron Veatch, chief financial officer, Emprise Bank

Aaron Veatch has followed in his father’s footsteps.

Veatch, 38, was promoted a month ago to chief financial officer at Emprise Bank. He was previously a vice president for finance and taxation at the bank’s holding company, Emprise Financial.

His father, Tom Veatch, is the CFO of Emprise Financial, the bank's holding company.

But Veatch hasn’t worked with or under his father all the time since he graduated from Friends University with a bachelor’s degree in business and accounting.

In fact, it wasn’t until he had some time in as a staff accountant at Ernst & Young’s Wichita office that he decided he was going to stick to accounting.

"After I was at E&Y awhile, I did decide I’d like to move in that direction,” he said.

Veatch said at one point he considered going to law school. Instead, he got a master’s degree in business from Wichita State University.

From Ernst & Young, Veatch went to Thorn Americas as a senior analyst. He was there less than a year. The company had been purchased by Renter’s Choice, and Veatch had no interest in moving.

“My wife and I were committed to staying in Wichita,” Veatch said. “That was our desire.”

What is on your CFO to-do list?

“One of the things I’ll be involved in is working with other areas of the bank to provide them with the information they need to facilitate their planning process, and to manage our balance sheet effectively.”

Did you intend for your career to lead you to the role of CFO?

“It really was not one of my stated goals. I thought I would start out in that area (accounting) but I didn’t think I’d take the route I ended up taking.”

What’s been the biggest challenge thus far in your career?

“In banking, I think my biggest challenge is upon us. This new job, in the midst of the economic situation we’re in, with all the focus on financial institutions, even local, well-run institutions like Emprise Bank.”

What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve received in your career?

“It really comes down to doing the right thing, no matter what. And that was modeled by my parents and grandparents. That’s one of the tenets of the organization (Emprise) and embedded deeply into the corporate culture. That’s one of the main reasons why I’m at Emprise after nearly nine years.”

What do you do to unwind from the office?

“My wife says that I go skipping off to work Monday mornings. I have a wonderful wife and three kids. So I lead my son’s Webelos den and I help my wife teach Sunday school.”