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Umpqua Bank

In 1953, Ken, along with Milt Herbert (Herbert Lumber Company, another long-time supplier for Patrick) and several others in the wood business pooled together $75,000 to start the South Umpqua State Bank. Their motivation was to provide a local place where their employees could cash their paychecks.

“Because we didn’t have a bank, a lot of paychecks were being cashed in bars, which were extending credit to their patrons,” Milt recalls. “I thought it was wrong because money that should have been going home to buy groceries and school clothes was going into tavern tills. So you could say we helped start a bank as a service to the community.” (Quote courtesy of the book about Milt’s life— Can’t Never Could Do Anything, by Jim Petersen)

That one-branch bank has grown into Umpqua Holdings, a banking institution with nearly 400 branches and $22 billion in assets. Allyn Ford, Kenneth’s son, served as a director of Umpqua Bank for more than 40 years.

Somewhat ironically, in a way, that bank, Umpqua Bank, now finances the Patrick Lumber Co.