Wayne Stidham

Wayne Stidham, Class of 1934

The story of Forrest Wayne Stidham began on August 10, 1916  in Richmond , Indiana when he was born to parents Nora and Edmond, the youngest of 7 children.

During the Great Depression, Wayne witnessed his father work a whole year without pay.  At the young age of 13, Wayne learned what it was to work, choosing this instead of playing sports in high school,  washing  shelves and sacking  groceries at Hartzel’s  grocery store and later delivering  them in his Model T.  Wayne graduated from Morton High School in 1934 and attended Richmond Business College.  His education would continue with graduation from Earlham’s Institute for Executive Growth in 1957, graduation from University of Wisconsin’s School of Banking in 1959, and from the Commercial Bank Management School at Columbia University in 1963.

At the age of 17, Wayne met Francis Losciavo, the love of his life, at a sledding party at the Elks Club.  It was love at first sight.  Wayne courted her for four years until she was 19 and they were married.  They have three children – John, David, and Susan.  Wayne is proud of his three children children and how successful they each have become. Wayne also has five grandchildren and nine great grandchildren.

Wayne learned of an opening at Second National Bank while working at Hartzler’s.  He went to the interview in his work clothes.  He left worrying he had not made a great impression.  He went home, put on his suit and went back to re-interview with the same man who did not recognize him at first.  Wayne was hired at $60 a month in 1936.

Wayne was drafted into WWII in 1945.  Wayne spent part of his time in the U.S. Army Infantry and later in the Army Finance Dept.  He was sent to Fort Benjamin Harrison for Army Finance School.  He was in charge of paying fellow soldiers their discharge pay as the war came to an end.

In 1947, Wayne came back to Richmond and resumed his career in banking at Second National Bank.  During the period from 1947 to 1952 he served as Branch Manager of the Hagerstown Branch of Second National Bank.  He worked his way up the ladder being appointed Assistant Vice President in 1956, Vice President in 1958 and at the age of 46 he was the youngest to be appointed President in 1962.  Under his supervision Wayne saw the assets of the bank grow from $7 million to $190 million while overseeing 11 offices.  When Wayne first started  with Second National, they  employed roughly 20-25 people.  When Wayne retired that number jumped to 175 employees.

In 1987, Wayne received his 50 year pin and was welcomed as a member of the Association’s exclusive Fifty Year Club for spending 50 years in the banking industry.  At that time Second National Bank had only four 50 year bankers.  Second National Bank, had become the 23rd largest bank in the state.  That same year, he announced his retirement from the Board of Directors.

Wayne became an outstanding member of the community by serving on the United Way Committee, the board of Reid Hospital, the YMCA, Wayne County Historical Society, Wayne County Civil War Centennial Committee, Sons of Union Veterans, Richmond Art Association, American Legion, Kiwanis, the Salvation Army Board, Treasurer of the Indiana Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, the Elks, and the Earlham Board of Investment Trustees.  Knowing whom to ask, fundraising became his second career.  Stidham was instrumental in fund raising for the Townsend Center, raising $100,000 to $400,000 to build the local community Center.  He was greatly instrumental in the creation of the Wayne County Chamber of Commerce.  Wayne was also a founding member and the first President of the Reid Foundation.

In 1955 along with Andy Cecere and Art Vivian, formed a group known as the Committee of 100 in Richmond.  It was modeled after a similar group in Evansville whose primary purpose was to draw industry to the area.  This committee worked to keep the major employer Wayne Works in Richmond.  With the purchase of land, corporate bonds, and tax incentives the company and its 700 well paying jobs stayed until it closed in 1992.

Wayne believes one highlight of his life was when he had the opportunity to help with a fundraiser that brought Frank Sinatra and Jerry Lewis to Richmond.  Richmond’s Chief of Police, Chief Mitrione was murdered while in Columbia training their police force.  Chief Mitrione had 7 children at the time.  The fundraiser brought in over $75,000 that was turned into a college fund.  All 7 of the children have now either graduated or are currently enrolled in college.

The explosion of the downtown area in April of 1968, Wayne was involved in the redevelopment of Richmond.  He offered assistance to downtown merchants, providing bank funding for the creation of the mall and the promenade area.  With the help of others, he brought Elder Beerman as a retail anchor to the new mall.  A letter from Byron Klute, mayor at the time reads “the willingness of Second National Bank to lend money to distressed business men will without a doubt prove to be of a great assistance in rebuilding Richmond.  Our administration would not be in a position to promote the rebirth of this city if it were not for you. “

Wayne knew the importance of having the opportunity for higher learning in his own life. He was involved in the location of Indiana University East, Ivy Tech and Purdue University in Richmond Indiana.  More than $1.2 million dollars was raised to purchase land on Richmond’s north side by a committee of 25 headed by Wayne.  Wayne asked the local factories to encourage  their employees  to contribute weekly from their paychecks.  In 2005, Stidham Drive was named on the Ivy Tech/ IU East Campus in honor of Wayne Stidham.

Wayne and Frances retired and moved to Florida in 1987.  In 2006, due to health issues, they returned to Richmond  and built  their home at Friends Fellowship Community, a project he had championed years before.  Frances passed away on June 1, 2009.

Wayne is a man that made history even though he didn’t know it at the time.  He was just doing what was right.  Not only was it right for his career, and his bank; it was right for his community.  His leadership changed the world around him.  When Wayne reflects on his wonderful life.  He says he could not have done all that he did without the good people under him at the bank.   He built a legacy for his children and his community. The Stidham Family Trust at Ivy Tech has been established and awards scholarships to the local community college.  If a man’s success is measured by money, or position, or family, Wayne’s fortune is beyond measure.





  380 Hub Etchison Parkway, Richmond, IN 47374

 (765) 973-3338