Ridge View banks on Roanoke region
Drawn by the Blue Ridge’s “blue-collar atmosphere,” a new bank has set up shop in the Roanoke region. Ridge View Bank, a division of Pennsylvania-based CNB Bank, opened for business in October 2021 and plans to be headquartered in the city of Roanoke next year.
“We’re not ready to disclose the exact location yet,” says Ridge View President Carrie McConnell, “but the headquarters building will be two-story and around 15,000 square feet. We hope to have it up and running by the first quarter of 2023.”
Ridge View currently has two loan production offices — one in Roanoke; the other at Smith Mountain Lake. McConnell says the bank has eight employees now and expects to have at least 20 by year’s end.
The new bank has ambitious expansion plans. McConnell says the bank’s first full-service branch will be in neighboring Salem, opening by October. The goal: six branches in the region and 60 to 70 employees within five years.
Although backed by CNB, Ridge View will be independent from its parent company, McConnell says. “We will have our own budget, our own headquarters, everything here locally.”
Ridge View will be CNB’s fifth division and its first in the South. The others are in Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio; Erie, Pennsylvania; and Buffalo, New York.
“They researched this market heavily for three years,” McConnell says. “They like midsized cities that are growing, and Roanoke is growing.”
Although some area counties have seen population declines, the Roanoke region overall has seen steady growth in each of the last four U.S. Census counts.
McConnell says CNB “looks for places where a community bank is a good fit. They liked the blue-collar atmosphere of this area.”
McConnell knows about startups. She was one of HomeTown Bank’s first hires when that Roanoke-based bank was founded in 2005. HomeTown was acquired by American National Bank in 2018, part of a decadeslong trend of banking consolidations.
“We still have several smaller community banks in the area, but there’s been so much transition,” says Jill Loope, director of economic development for Roanoke County. “This definitely brings a diversity of offerings to the business community.”
McConnell was the one who gave Ridge View its name.
“I thought it was representative of what we’re surrounded by,” she says. “And we want to expand into other areas of the region, so we didn’t want just a Roanoke-based name.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been corrected since its original publication. An earlier version of the story incorrectly identified Ridge View President Carrie McConnell in the photo caption and also incorrectly stated that the bank would be locating its headquarters in downtown Roanoke.