Jim Cargill, president and CEO of Arvest Bank in central, northeast and southwest Arkansas, will retire at the end of this year after an almost four-decade career with the company, according to a memo sent to employees Thursday (June 23).
Cargill joined Arvest in 1985 and has worked in the Little Rock market since 1999.
Arvest regional executive Craig Rivaldo confirmed the move but declined further comment.
“After more than 37 years of devotion to my job here at Arvest, I have made the decision to retire so I can take on a new job as full-time ‘Pop’ to my two grandsons,” Cargill said in the memo obtained by Talk Business & Politics.
Cargill, a past chairman of the Arkansas Bankers Association, has been head of the central Arkansas market since 2016. He plans to remain with the bank through the year’s end to help transition to his successor. The job has not been posted.
“I really must admit that sharing this news with you is bittersweet,” Cargill said in the memo. “I have loved the countless Arvest family members I have had the privilege to know and work with in five Arvest banks where my Cargill family has been located. But now my Cargill family draws me to be much more available to them at this time in my life. Since they followed and supported me all of my Arvest days, it’s only fair.”
Cargill is a native of Lewisville (Lafayette County) and a fourth-generation banker who began his career at his family’s bank, working with his grandfather, president of First National Bank in Lewisville. His parents, grandparents and great-grandfather were affiliated with the Lewisville bank, and his father was chairman and CEO.
Cargill graduated from the University of Arkansas in 1979. He started his Arvest career in Rogers and held various leadership roles during his career with the bank in multiple Arkansas markets, including Rogers, Bentonville and Little Rock, as well as Oklahoma markets Bartlesville and Shawnee.
“Putting on that [Arvest] nametag day after day to live our Arvest mission statement is just as natural as breathing to me,” Cargill said. “It’ll be a big adjustment, but I wouldn’t trade a thing. I’ve learned, I’ve grown and I’ve been treated with respect by my peers and leaders. It’s an honor to be associated with this great company. I am so proud of it and of you for being a part of it.”
Arvest maintains its charter in Fayetteville but operates more than 200 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 14 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team.
By assets ($26.6 billion), Arvest is Arkansas’ largest bank.