By Jess Washington, CEO & Director of Finance

This afternoon Vista Bank held a private celebratory luncheon to welcome William “Bill” Mahomes to the Vista Board of Directors. Vista invited both executives and community leaders like President Harrison Blair of the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce and James McGee, President & Chair of Southern Dallas Progress to witness a historical moment with Mahomes becoming the first Black Board Director in the bank’s 111 year history. Mahomes joined Vista Bank in 2021 as Executive Vice President and served as General Counsel. During the event, there was a conversation hosted by Vista Bank’s Director of Community Development & Outreach, Lubbock Smith III, who discussed the “winners mentality” Mahomes has possessed throughout his illustrious career.

Vista Bank Board Director Bill Mahomes and Director of Community Development & Outreach Lubbock Smith III chat alongside community leaders and Vista employees

For those deep in the Black community of Dallas, you know that Bill Mahomes is a living legend. His work as former Board member of the Dallas Black Chamber of Commerce is unrivaled. But the accolades just don’t stop there. Mahomes has had a lot of “firsts”. In college, he was the first black student to graduate from the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets, he was the first Black attorney hired at Bracewell LLP, served as counsel for Fannie Mae, also counsel for Pro-Line Corp under the legendary Comer Cottrell and now he serves as Vice-Chairman of the TAMU Board of Regents. To be completely honest, that’s just the tip of the iceberg when listing the accomplishments for Bill Mahomes.

True to his esteemed reputation, Bill was gracious to the entire team for the recognition, but explained to Lubbock during their talk that he’s never concerned with the titles. 

“I’ve never been about being the first…. My perspective is always about making an impact and ensuring better opportunities for the next generation.”

Bill Mahomes

Lubbock and Bill continued to talk about the triumphs and obstacles faced during his career. But Mahomes placed emphasis on the fact that his mentality allowed him to succeed. He never wanted to be a “victim of circumstance,” no matter the situation. And his main goal, to make a difference without having to compromise who he was, remains true today. 

(L) Vista Bank’s President & CEO, John Steinmetz and (R) CFO Robert Bruce

As the conversation concluded, Vista Bank’s President and Chief Executive Officer, John Steinmetz gave an emotional statement with his perspective on Bill Mahomes’ new position as Board Director and the steps Vista Bank is taking towards progress.

“I have so much respect for Bill Mahomes and his leadership. We are by no means a perfect bank, but we are working damn hard to make changes in the right direction. I can speak for the board and the McLaughlin family to say we are honored to have Bill Mahomes as a Board Director.”

President & CEO John Steinmetz

Vista Bank’s CEO continued to state the importance of this momentous appointment with Bill Mahomes, considering that the bank’s beginnings dealt in cotton trade. 

Today, Vista Bank made history. Not just Black history… Texas history, and American history. Creating opportunities for people of color is imperative to the growth of our society and success of our economy. Vista Bank understands this and today proudly told DW that they have a lot more on the horizon. 

Vista Bank staff and community leaders celebrate with Bill Mahomes.

Jess Washington is the CEO and Director of Finance for the Dallas Weekly. Her job is to oversee company operations, develop strategic relationships both in the community and for marketing service partnerships.