New leader, same culture at York Traditions

//July 22, 2016

New leader, same culture at York Traditions

//July 22, 2016

Now, York Traditions has unveiled a succession plan in which Draganosky will step into the role of CEO held by Michael Kochenour since the bank’s founding in 2002. Kochenour plans to step down Jan. 1.

The transition is the first leadership change at York Traditions, one of two banks still based in York County. And it comes as the banking industry overall grapples with tightening regulations and growing competition from digitally focused financial companies.

The bank has assets of about $368.5 million as of March 31, up from $359.6 million at the end of 2015, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. The bank’s net operating income in the first quarter of 2016 was $646,000, up from $534,000 from the same period in 2015.

For Draganosky, the key to York Traditions’ future is its culture, not just its numbers.  

Draganosky said it is his appreciation for the bank’s culture that gave the board comfort with his taking over as CEO.

“Our products are going to change. Our services will change over time. Policies and procedures may change,” he said. “But we’re not going to mess with the culture.”

Consider the bank’s response to new rules for making home loans, which added to the workload for residential mortgages.

“When other banks were internally focused, frustrating borrowers, and at times exiting residential mortgage lending altogether as a result of this new regulation, we were proactively out educating the real estate community and holding our client’s hands through the mortgage process to help make their homeownership dreams come true,” Draganosky said.

Graduated into banking

Draganosky entered banking right out of college in 1985. His first job was with CoreStates Bank, now Wells Fargo, which afforded him leadership opportunities. He also was able to complete his MBA.

After 16 years at CoreStates, Draganosky joined what was then Commerce Bank as executive vice president for the York region. He then became regional president at Waypoint Bank, now Santander.

Waypoint offered a decentralized environment, he said, and as a regional president, he was able to impact his community.

“As Santander was beginning to take over, it became a very centralized environment and my ability to make a difference in York County was tempered,” he said.

With a lot of experience and a little bit of lucky timing, Draganosky joined York Traditions in April 2008. He learned of the job vacancy through Kochenour.

Of the 31 years Draganosky has worked in banking, 29 have been spent in York County, a track record not lost on other executives at York Traditions.

“He’s been very involved in the community and has provided leadership and solutions to businesses and individuals who needed banking services,” said Kochenour.

Draganosky, who lives in Dover Township, is a past board chairman for Junior Achievement of South Central PA, first vice chairman of the York County Industrial Development Authority, and vice chairman of Martin Library Associates. He is also involved with the Pennsylvania Bankers Association.

Loren Kroh, president of the York County Economic Alliance, worked with Draganosky at the Industrial Development Authority.

“It’s been exciting to watch the bank grow under Mike’s leadership, and I’m quite confident that it will continue to grow and play an increasingly important role in the community under Gene’s leadership,” Kroh said.