8 Questions – March 2014

8 Questions for John Dowling
President of Pinnacle Bank

By Fowler Roberts

Q. John, what motivated you to spearhead the building of the new bank building here in Gallup?
A. The biggest thing that made me want to do this is just because I love Gallup. I’m just trying to find ways to improve the downtown area and this is one way that I felt that we could do it.

Q. At this stage of your career, what do you enjoy most about your job?
A. One of the big things I really have enjoyed over the past 30 years is mentoring.  I was in Durango for a while and now I’m back in Gallup.  I really like helping develop young people in their banking careers and hopefully my ideas, my management style and leadership style will help bring forth what our future bankers will be like.

Q. What is the biggest challenge of your job?
A. Right now my biggest challenge is management of our people – and we have great staff.  Another challenge is growth for the bank and also for McKinley County.  As you know we are one of the poorest counties in New Mexico. I am just trying to figure out ways and ideas to increase and develop our economy and one of the places I thought we would start was with building this new bank and showing the image of what we can do in Gallup.

Q. What is your personal aspiration for the future of our community?
A. The biggest aspiration today is I want us to be an All-America City and really clean up our city for our quality of life in all aspects: work environment, a health and fitness environment, and outdoor recreation.

Q. What do you enjoy most about living in this area?
A. The biggest enjoyment I get from living in this area is from the people of this area.  They are great people.  I like the ethnicity of our area and I really do enjoy talking with all of these people and the bank customers.  I also like the opportunities that we have in this area.

Q. When you are not working, what do you do for fun?
A. I like to get outdoors. Theresa and I enjoy gardening.  I also like to play golf and exercise by walking outside.  I guess one of my aspirations is also the fact that we need to have a new golf course. (laughs)

Q. What is the last book that you read?
A. I really enjoy reading.  The last book I read was The Patriarch, which is the life story of Joseph Kennedy.

Q. If you could trade places with one person, who would it be and why?
A. One person that really gave me a lot of aspirations was the basketball coach I had in high school, who was a Native American.  He was a great-great-grandson of Chief Joseph McDonald. His name was Joe McDonald. If you look at Chief Joseph McDonald you will find that his leadership style is something that a lot of people have tried to emulate.  Some of the modern military academies still study his leadership style today.

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