Helping people has been the foundation upon which Ronald Bowling has built his career as well as his life.
His name is synonymous with Peoples Bank of Mullens, which became First Peoples Bank, and most recently Summit Community Bank.
After more than four decades, Bowling retired from his banking career – well almost, he continues to serve on the bank’s board of directors.
He believes Summit will be good for the community and will live up to its motto of “providing service beyond expectations.”
“They’ve taken good care of our employees,” he said.
During his 43-year career, he’s assisted three generations with financing their homes.
“My customers became like family,” he emphasized.
“It really gives you a lot of satisfaction.”
Bowling came to the bank right after graduating from Concord College, now Concord University, with an accounting degree.
William A. Davis, the former bank president, asked Bowling’s father if he might be interested in working at the bank.
He began as an auditor trainee and became bank chairman, president/CEO and director before retiring.
“Mr. Davis was a great mentor,” Bowling said of his predecessor.
“I really wouldn’t be the banker I am without his tutelage.”
During college, Bowling worked as a lifeguard at Twin Falls State Park and at a coal mine in Wyco.
“It was really a great learning experience,” he said of working around the mine.
“I learned that education isn’t a sign of intelligence.”
Bowling said he worked with men who, though they had no formal training, could design and build anything.
“I was so amazed by what they could do.”
Though he was born in Alaska, Bowling grew up in Mullens. One of three brothers, he is an identical twin. They are still known to friends as Ronnie and Donnie.
Many people still can not tell him from his brother Donnie, he said.
“We look identical, but our personalities are completely different,” he emphasized.
“People still get us confused.
“We had a lot of fun growing up,” he said, noting they did not pull some of the infamous pranks for which identical twins have been known.
And, they never tried to fool teachers or girlfriends.
“We never wanted to date the same girl.
“Of course, I married my childhood sweetheart,” Bowling said, adding his wife Susan could always tell them apart.
His parents, Junior and Joyce Bowling, were his biggest influences.
“I came from a very loving family,” he said.
“My parents taught us right from wrong.
“And they taught us how to treat people,” he emphasized.
Those lessons have served him well throughout his career.
In addition to continuing his banking education through numerous schools and programs over the years, he’s served, and continues to serve, on several charitable boards and non-profit agencies in order to give back to the community.
Now that he’s retired, he and Susan will spend some time traveling.
He wants to visit Fairbanks, Ala., where he was born.
He and Susan also want to spend time with their two daughters and four grandchildren.
Both girls have success careers and beautiful families, Bowling emphasized.
“I missed a lot of softball and basketball games and other things. I can never get that back.
“Without the support of my family, I would never have been able to accomplish what I did,” he emphasized.