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BAC Community Bank: Connecting People with Extraordinary Banking Services

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Written by Ann E. Butenas

As a first-generation Cambodian-American, Samnang “Sam” Bou never envisioned being the CFO of a community bank, but as it turns out, she is the perfect person for the job. “My family emigrated here after the civil war in the 1970s,” said Sam. “Stockton was a completely different landscape for them. I grew up here and appreciate this strong community and the diversity it offers.”

Sam earned her undergraduate degree in business administration from the University of the Pacific, followed by a master’s degree in accounting from St. Mary’s College of California in Moraga. With a strong education, she developed her resume working in various industries, all of which ultimately led her to banking and back home to Stockton. “It all just kind of came full circle,” she noted. “I was fortunate to meet many great mentors along the way. Opportunities presented themselves, and they led me to BAC. Our philosophy and core values are community-focused, and I enjoy working in an environment where community is a big part of what we do.”

Trusted Institution
Since 1965, BAC Community Bank has stood as an innovative community bank, serving small to mid-sized businesses, professionals and individuals with an array of product and service solutions. In addition to its original location in Brentwood, BAC has branches throughout the Central Valley and eastern Contra Costa County.

Sam joined the bank in 2018 as its controller, overseeing the accounting and finance department. When she transitioned to CFO, her role changed to a focus on asset/liability management and staying on top of industry trends.

BAC continuously explores the changing needs of its customers, and provides unique digital and traditional solutions that exceed customer expectations. BAC couples this focus on technological solutions with an emphasis on “one-on-one” customer relationships. “In fact, COVID-19 challenges only served to strengthen relationships with our customers as we helped them address critical needs during the crisis,” explained Sam.

“When big banks were closing, reducing hours and limiting access, our doors were open and we were ready and willing to help our customers and our community. We are always just one phone call away,” said Sam. “This was especially important when dealing with the PPP loans we facilitated for our business customers. We continue to be at the forefront, helping each customer through the process to allow their business to stay afloat and keep their people employed.

“We love what we do. Our biggest challenge is to help people realize the high level of service available at BAC, along with convenient digital banking services,” Sam stressed.

Strong, Inspiring Women Leaders
Surrounded by a high-achieving executive management team comprised primarily of women, Sam appreciates how that particular dynamic positively affects the work environment. “It is very inspiring to be around women who are passionate about their work and who have demonstrated exemplary leadership during times of crisis,” she reflected, giving accolades to CEO Dana Bockstahler; EVP/Chief Credit Officer Janet Jenkins, and EVP/Chief Administrative Officer Jackie Verkuyl.

While Sam has faced hurdles in her career, she feels lucky that gender-related challenges were infrequent. “I have never felt that being a woman has been a setback for me. I actually think it helps to balance the dynamic in the workplace,” she explained. “If there is a business issue or conflict, I think women often bring a different perspective to problem solving, which in turn leads to innovative solutions.”

Opportunity for Action and Community Support
Sam takes a pragmatic view of potential obstacles, viewing them less as problems and more as opportunities upon which to act. “When faced with hard problems, it’s important to trust yourself to make the right decision,” she emphasized. “It’s so important to me to be a part of an industry and institution that serves as the backbone for the local economy,” expressed Sam. “Working at a local community bank offers a broad range of opportunities for learning and growth, plus the chance to develop meaningful relationships with our customers. At BAC, I can easily connect with customers at a personal level and learn about their unique goals and needs.”

BAC Community Bank continues to deliver the convenient functionality of high-tech solutions with high-touch personal service. The leaders of BAC aspire to connect people to extraordinary banking services, while remaining committed to keeping the core values of personal relationships at the forefront.
For more information about BAC Community Bank, visit or call 877-226-5820 for locations and hours. ■