Pat Benton has called Naperville home all his life, only leaving shortly to earn a finance degree from ISU.
After graduating, he got a job at Harris Bank in Chicago, but knew that Naperville was where he wanted to raise his family.
Despite his commute and job responsibilities, Benton still found time to volunteer all around town.
“I decided that I either had to get involved in the community or move someplace else because Naperville was so ripe for change at that time,” said Benton.
His earliest introduction to volunteering was with the Naperville Heritage Society with his parents. He then went on to lead the group as president in 1987 in order to help preserve the history of the community.
“I feel that his true sincere dedication of caring about this town is one of those unsung stories that you don’t often hear about,” said Peggy Frank, President Emeritus of Naper Settlement. “He is one of the soft-spoke, quiet, behind the scenes guys who makes great connections and helps other people succeed.”
And his ability to make connections didn’t stop there. Benton also served as President of the Naperville United Way and the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce.
“I think one of Pat’s biggest assets is that he knows how to develop trust in people, because he trusts people, and you talk to Pat, and you know what he says, he’s going to do,” said Mary Ann Bobosky who served on both boards with Benton.
Benton used his financial expertise on many other boards as well, including Edward Hospital, Naperville CARES, and the Naperville Education Foundation.
In 2007, after a long career at Harris Bank, Benton was chosen to head up a new bank in town started by local business leaders because of his experience and strong personal ties to many residents.
“I always felt very confident if a client of mine needed some banking, I could gladly refer them to Pat Benton,” said Ray Kinney, a board member at the bank. “Pat was going to take great care of them and that’s something very, very important to be able to say. Pat from day one got that confidence from the board.”
Not only was he great at creating lasting relationships, but he was also able to grow the bank into a larger facility in just over five years.
As Benton prepares to say goodbye to banking, he is looking forward to enjoying the community in which he’s invested so much.
“Polly and I envision ourselves going to the beach on Saturday morning for Adult Float and just enjoying all the things that our community has to offer,” said Benton.
Benton and his wife Polly plan to do some traveling to begin his retirement.
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