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One Thing for Certain

A Note From the Chairman

I just spoke to my daughter who lives in Orange County, California and works in a restaurant. As of Monday, they were still open but business was very slow and she isn’t sure what to expect in the coming days.

Yesterday, a hotel operator reported 10% occupancy and oil is under $30 per barrel. Many other dreadful stories abound. With these and other breaking news that are constantly streaming all the necessary precautions we should be taking, my message today need not reiterate the obvious, although rest assured that we are being proactive in every way possible.

Ultimately the message is simple, we care deeply for our employees and customers!

And we feel the same way about our community, both locally and across the country. It is difficult to fully appreciate how challenging it has become for so many so very quickly. The only positive to come from all of this is that we will certainly have a story to tell our grandkids.

Yet, like with Hurricane Harvey, I would enthusiastically exchange every amazing story of courage and compassion for not having flooded in the first place. Undoubtedly, we will get through this most unfortunate “state of emergency.” Not to be semantical, but we are being inundated with the term “uncertainty.” Yet, there is another perspective that is, perhaps, absolute and certain. The pandemic WILL end. Our activities and routines WILL resume. As we wait, the normal flow of commerce will slow dramatically. But what we do know is that all these engines will be restarted. This certainty is very real and reliable.

So, as we all pause and follow the accord that “we are in this together,” it will be our overarching sense of community by which we overcome it all. My grandfather had an irrigation and pump company that served west Texas farmers back in the 1950’s and 60’s. He did most of the work himself as he installed and repaired pumps for farmers who often had to pay on credit. What he knew, by their handshake (today an elbow bump) was that even if today’s crop was not coming in, there would be better days and years ahead. He worked hard, he trusted even harder and it wasn’t always easy.

Whether here in the “big city” as my grandmother called it, or at one of our rural locations, to follow the values of my grandfather can appear impractical but it is what must be done and given the certain future ahead, we at Allegiance Bank will exercise our muscle as the Houston region’s largest local community bank to do just that.

The bank’s capital position is strong. Our operations remain fully functioning across the board. In addition to our long-held alignment to service and making a contribution, our regulators even sent out a letter encouraging banks to “engage in prudent and proactive actions, which are in the best interests of the financial institutions, the borrowers and the economy.” They want banks to look past near-term conditions in order to take action and be of help today!  

So, we remain steadfast. We are indeed postured to listen and to respond as is appropriate. Our loyalty to one another must be, and from our perspective is, unshakeable. Our future will arrive and by sticking together it will be bright and that is for certain. This is not a “head in the sand” message. We understand that the financial marketplace is in the reaction mode. But it will recover, as it always does.

I believe in our bankers. They are experienced, loyal neighbors who can listen and will do whatever is possible to assist our customers. We have great service capacity and a scale that will benefit the Houston region broadly. Our financial strength serves us well as we use it to serve this community, our customers, employees and investors.

The bottom line is this, we are thankful for our customers and the opportunity you have given us to be your bank, especially in times like these.

Allegiance Bank Chairman Steven Retzloff

Steve Retzloff, Chairman

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