The nation was mired in the Great Depression in 1933 when Jesse Mitchell and his friends and business associates came together to do what only a few black entrepreneurs before them had done: establish a new bank to serve their community. Their ambitious plan required an act of Congress, but by the end of the year, the federal government had approved the group’s plan to sell $50,000 in stock to finance the Bank. By April 1, 1934, more than 95 percent of the stock had been sold. The new bank – to be called Industrial Bank of Washington-received its certificate of incorporation from the US Treasury Department on August 13, 1934. The Bank opened on August 20, 1934, with 6 employees and $192,000 in assets. Jesse Mitchell served as President until his passing in 1955.
When Benson Doyle Mitchell assumed the presidency in December 1954, it had become the largest black-owned bank in the country. With assets totaling $7 million, Industrial remained the only black bank in the nation’s capital. Doyle was always proud that he did not just step into his father’s business at the top. After a year of graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business, Doyle joined his father full time at Industrial. He took great pride in the fact that, even as the heir apparent, he started in an entry-level bookkeeping position and worked his way up. Under Doyle’s steady leadership, Industrial grew significantly and continued to expand its customer base. Part of the bank’s growth included partnering with other minority banks to provide “participation loans” to major corporations, such as Walt Disney, which had pledged a certain amount of its business to minority-owned financial institutions.
Continuing the legacy his grandfather and father laid before him, B. Doyle Mitchell Jr., had been educated at private, public, and parochial schools and had spent summers in various departments of the bank since he was 16. But the larger lessons had come from watching his father-his integrity, his humility, and his compassion. After his father’s passing in 1993, B. Doyle Mitchell, Jr., 30 years old and then vice president of commercial lending, was enthusiastically appointed by the board as president. Through his leadership, Industrial Bank now has over half billion in assets, over 140 employees, branches in Washington, DC, Prince Georges County, MD Newark, NJ, Harlem, NY, and an Innovation Campus in Largo MD. Three generations of leadership, perseverance, humility, gratitude, and an unwavering commitment to the community.
*Excerpts from the book, “Images of America - Industrial Bank”. The book is sold in each branch.
We know that when you bank you have a choice. Over the years our customers have banked with us for many reasons. Some have chosen Industrial Bank because we have looked out for their best interest, others because we have earned and kept their trust. A host of our customers have chosen to bank with us because their parents and grandparents believed in our mission, vision, and core values. Most importantly, our customers know that we care.
Industrial Bank is working to create a vibrant economy through strategic partnerships and financial education seminars. As a Treasury certified CDFI (Community Development Financial Institution), we annually reinvest over 60% of our assets back into the communities we serve and, our team of experienced bankers provide hundreds of hours in financial education sessions. Industrial Bank believes that an informed customer is a strong customer, and together the bank and its customers provide a strong foundation for the community.
“Our commitment has only grown stronger through the years, and we stand poised to bring our unwavering commitment of delivering products and services that educate and help to build generational wealth to the communities we serve.” - B. Doyle Mitchell, Jr., President/CEO
Industrial Bank offers a full range of banking services from ten banking centers. These services include a host of checking, savings, and investment accounts for retail and commercial customers, cash management, corporate online banking, electronic banking services, debit cards and a variety of consumer, and commercial loans and lines of credit.
Our Guiding Principles
Provide financial services with incomparable customer care.
To make a difference in your life and to impact economic development in your community.
The Industrial Bank team is guided by its Core Values of:
- Leadership: We believe leaders aspire to excellence, and exert positive influence on others by holding themselves and others accountable for continuous improvement.
- Customer Service: We believe internal and external customers are our greatest assets and providing team members the necessary resources to ensure we surpass customer expectations is critical.
- Integrity: We believe in being honest, trustworthy and fulfilling our word/commitments to each other and customers.
- Community: We believe in strengthening our local community and getting involved with our partners.
- Relationships: We believe and respect in the confidentiality and the protection of the personal and business information of our fellow team members and our external customers. We value respect the input and opinions of each other.