MBA President and CEO Max Cook Announces Retirement

Max Cook, MBA President & CEOAfter more than 30 years as leader of the Missouri Bankers Association, MBA President and CEO Max Cook has announced his retirement, effective summer 2023.

“It has been an opportunity of a lifetime to lead this great association,” Cook said. “I have been blessed to be part of a wonderful community of bankers who have become dear lifelong friends.”

Cook joined MBA in April 1991, becoming the sixth individual to lead the association. Throughout his tenure, Cook has experienced significant changes in the banking community. 

“Our focus at MBA has and will always be on how we can best be an advocate and resource for our members,” Cook said. “I am extremely proud of the remarkable MBA staff and their dedication to the banking community.” 

Cook’s banking career spans nearly 47 years. Before joining MBA, he served as senior vice president with the Texas Bankers Association and Oklahoma Bankers Association. Cook spent the first six years of his career at two Oklahoma banks, where he served in positions ranging from teller to lending officer.

With Cook’s announcement, the MBA Board of Directors appointed Brice Luetkemeyer, president and CEO of the Bank of St. Elizabeth, to chair a search committee of Missouri bankers overseeing the recruitment of the association’s next leader. This committee will work with an executive search firm that will conduct a national search. Bankers serving on the committee follow.
 
  • J.R. Buckner, president and CEO of First Federal Bank of Kansas City
  • Luanne Cundiff, president and CEO of First State Bank of St. Charles
  • Patrick Kussman, president and CEO of Regional Missouri Bank in Marceline
  • Ken Littlefield, chairman of Central Bank in Jefferson City
  • Shelley Seifert, chairman and CEO of First Bank in Creve Coeur
The committee will make its recommendation to the MBA Board of Directors in spring 2022. After the board makes its selection, that individual will work alongside Cook until his retirement in summer 2023.

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The Missouri Bankers Association is a statewide trade and professional organization in Jefferson City that represents the interests of more than 245 banks and savings and loan financial institutions in Missouri. MBA serves as the principal advocate for the Missouri banking community and provides educational opportunities, products and services that assist bankers with enhancing their banking operations. Follow MBA on Twitter at @mobankers.com.