Learn how we have become the bank of choice for the people of West Central Ohio since 1920.
“The people of West Central Ohio have been very loyal to our bank through the years. As we have grown and added services, more individuals and businesses have also come to appreciate the advantages our personal attention provides. I continue to believe that we are on the leading edge of banking technology in our region, and that means better service and greater access for our customers.”
– Eric Faulkner, President
On January 31, 1920, the Citizens National Bank opened its doors for the first time in Bluffton, Ohio, and offered all new customers an apple in appreciation for stopping by. A review of the books from 1920 indicates that the bank began with $50,000 in capital and approximately four employees.
We have expanded our offices to Celina, Defiance, Elida, Findlay, Lima, Springfield, Toledo and Van Wert. We currently employ about 160 people and serve customers in eleven primary counties: Allen, Hancock, Putnam, Hardin, Auglaize, Mercer, Van Wert, Paulding, Clark, Defiance and Lucas.
Citizens National Bank had a strong year in 2022. In spite of the rising rate environment, our customers continued to grow their businesses and expand their farm operations through loans funded by CNB. We grew our loan volume by 4.8% with a strong focus on commercial real estate and Commercial & Industrial growth.
We continue to look for ways to make banking easier and safe for our customers. In 2022 we added an automated tool to help curb identity theft when small businesses apply for new accounts. We also were able to offer cybersecurity training to all our customers free of charge through our KnowBe4 program. In addition, we launched same-day ACH transactions for our business customers in amounts up to $1 million.
As a community bank, we are focused on supporting local businesses and non-profits. Our employees volunteer their time throughout the year to many organizations, including the United Way and the Salvation Army, as well as many boards.
The size of our bank continues to grow, and we look forward to welcoming more staff into our organization to grow with us!
Citizens National Bank is consistently rated high for performance and stability. We currently have a 5 Star Rating from Bauer Financial, and we were named as one of the Top 50 Community Banks in the Midwest this year by S&P Global Market Intelligence.
Citizens has a unique notoriety as being one of the banks that John Dillinger robbed in 1933. History has it that on August 14, 1933, John Dillinger and his gang came to Bluffton, stole $6,000 from The Citizens National Bank, and exited the bank, guns blazing (amazingly no one was injured) as they made their escape to the north.
In October of that year, John Dillinger was brought back to Ohio and held in the Lima jail (12 miles south of Bluffton) to stand trial for the Bluffton bank robbery. On October 12, Dillinger’s “gang” came into the jail claiming they were officers from Indiana and they were taking Dillinger back to stand trial there. When Sheriff Jesse Sarber asked for their credentials, they opened fire on Sarber, killing him and breaking Dillinger out of jail.
Dillinger was one of the most publicized criminals of the 20th Century. On July 22, 1934, however, Dillinger was brought down by “The Lady in Red” when he was killed by federal agents and police as he left a Chicago movie house.
At Citizens National Bank, we believe it is our responsibility to support, improve, and give back to the communities we serve. We partner with our neighbors to focus on our community, with an emphasis on making it a better place to live and work. We do this by investing in and giving back to the community, with donations to local causes and non-profit organizations, and countless hours of employee volunteer time. When you do business with CNB, you benefit the community in which we all live and work.