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Throw Back Thursday!

Updated September 3, 2020

Trust Point

We are proud of Trust Point’s century of service reputation of excellence. But, our approach and purpose has always been focused on the future. Not just our own company’s future - but, more importantly, our client’s futures.

It’s been ten years since this article was released and we have grown significantly since that time! We have reached over $5 Billion and have no signs of slowing down. View the full article here.

Handel: Trust Point Inc. continues to grow

Originally Posted Sept 4, 2010

Kent Handel, president and CEO of Trust Point Inc. trust company in La Crosse, says his com-pany continues to grow and has become more involved in the community and more visible in the past several years.

The 97-year-old company was known as North Central Trust Co. until 2008, when it changed its name to Trust Point. It is an independent provider of investment management, personal trust, retirement plan and philanthropic services.

Trust Point is one of the oldest and largest independent trust companies in the nation. The amount of assets held and managed for its clients has grown to $1.7 billion since Handel joined the firm in 2001. He attributes the company’s continued growth to its staff, board and owners.

Trust Point moved to its current location at 230 N. Front St. in 2003, the same year it opened a second office in Minneapolis, which has five employees. Trust Point has a total of 55 employees.

Handel, raised on a farm near West Union, Iowa, joined North Central Trust as president and CEO in August 2001. Before that he was employed by Security National Bank in Sioux City, Iowa, for about 20 years and had served as senior vice president of its trust division for more than 10 years.

How many years of experience do you have in your field?

My start in the investment business was in 1979, when I began running the investment side of Postal Finance Co., which was based in Sioux City. It was just as I was graduating from Morningside College in Sioux City.

Before that, while I was attending Morningside, I worked part time for Postal Finance as a repo guy through an internship. I’d go out and pick up a car or a truck or you name it – furniture, vacuum cleaners, cows, horses. It was interesting. I learned a lot. It’s not like the shows on TV, where they show people repossessing things and getting shot at all of the time.

In 1982, Postal Finance was in the process of being sold, and Security National Bank asked me if I’d like to run their investment side. I worked at the bank in various positions, until I came here.

How many clients does Trust Point have?

That’s difficult to say, because most of our clients have multiple relationships with us. We have 2,200 different account relationships, but the number of clients is less than that. We have clients in 38 states and a couple of foreign countries.

How has Trust Point changed during your years with the company?

In one sense, it hasn’t changed at all, as we’ve always focused on our clients, as opposed to trying to sell them product. Our clients tend to be with us for a very long period of time; we have third- and fourth-generation family members who are still clients.

What has changed is we have grown significantly. We’ve made a tremendous investment in technology here. We deliver information much differently and interact with our clients differently. We do video presentations at distances with clients who are at a distance.

In 2003, we bought the building we’re in and moved here from Third and Main, and we opened our Minneapolis office. While Minneapolis is a large city, there really wasn’t anyone like us there. Opening an office there has been a very good decision for us.

One thing that’s changed pretty significantly since I’ve come is the company’s involvement in the community. The company and its staff members are heavily involved in activities in the communities in which we are. Lots of us sit on a number of boards or are involved in sponsorships of lots of different things.

What’s your outlook for Trust Point for the next few years?Our business has been very good and we’re growing pretty quickly. The story we have to tell of a 97-year-old trust company is a good one in this time of uncertainty, when all of us read every day about fraud here or fraud there.

How would you describe your leadership style at Trust Point?

It’s very much a team approach. We succeed because of the team of people that run this company and the team of people who work here. We very much take care of our own. We have a great board of directors that provide good guidance. But at the end of the day, they leave it up to us to get the job done. And they don’t interfere, and that’s great.

Anything else?

I think we’ve done a pretty good job of raising our visibility in the community. Part of that has to do with all the various things we’ve gotten involved in.

I often think there’s a fair number of people who think we’re for a handful of the rich and famous families. But we have a lot of wonderful clients here who aren’t household names. We have a lot of really fantastic clients. At the end of the day, clients are our business. We understand our success is because of them.

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Trust Point

We are proud of Trust Point’s century of service reputation of excellence. But, our approach and purpose has always been focused on the future. Not just our own company’s future - but, more importantly, our client’s futures.