West Virginia Executive recognized true Mountaineer spirit and a force within the state’s business community, naming two-time West Virginia University College of Business and Economics graduate Donald F. Mock III to the Young Guns Class of 2016.
“It’s such a humbling honor to be recognized with my fellow Young Guns recipients. They are very talented, successful business leaders in the state. It was a great milestone in my career to be honored with this distinction by such a respectable publication within the state,” he said.
Mock is the senior vice president of United Bank, Inc., where he manages and oversees the auto dealer services line of business, which consists of the commercial wholesale financing floorplan portfolio and the consumer indirect lending division. He is also responsible for the market leadership of the Capital Market in Charleston, the company’s largest market in the state, in which he oversees the operations of 10 branch offices across four counties.
He graduated from the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics with undergraduate degrees in finance and business management in 2004, and a MBA in 2010. However, the Hinton, West Virginia, native identified his affinity for the financial services industry earlier in life with help from his high school’s business teacher, Susan Lawrence.
“She really opened my eyes to understanding the opportunities available in pursuing a career in the financial services industry. I took several business courses beginning my sophomore year of high school, and I actually became president of the Future Business Leaders of America organization,” he said. “She always encouraged me to read books on investment and entrepreneurship, and also expand my horizons in understanding accounting and investment principles.”
Mock said he expanded upon this penchant at B&E at the undergraduate and graduate levels, learning from professors like Drs. Paul Speaker, William Riley, Clifford Hawley, Richard Riley, and Gerald Blakley.
“It was an amazing experience. I had wonderful professors in both undergraduate and during my MBA. I think the quality of the curriculum was fantastic,” he said. “When I entered into my finance major, the professors were very detailed, and the classes were organized in ways you could develop great bonds with your professors and classmates, while learning all the facets of intermediate and advanced finance.”
Following his graduation in 2004, Mock launched his career at United Bank as a commercial credit analyst at the executive headquarters in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Striving to build a successful career, Mock worked rigorously and continued to climb within the company. In 2006, he was promoted to commercial loan officer, and in 2008 he transitioned to Beckley, where he managed the loan department.
Within the following two years, Mock received another promotion, which he says is one of his greatest professional accomplishments.
“One of the biggest challenges during my career was also one of my greatest honors,” he said. “I was named the Market President of the South Market in October 2010. I was 28 years old, and at the time I was one of the youngest market presidents ever named in the history of the company.”
The promotion from Vice President of Commercial Lending to Market President of the South Market of West Virginia brought new responsibilities and challenges.
“The most challenging element of that role was the adaptation of overseeing many employees who had a vast amount of banking experience and more tenure than me,” he said. “My challenge was how to engage the entire market into buying into my management style and accepting me as their market leader, as well as my vision and goals for the market.”
“To overcome that obstacle, I made a significant amount of changes that were necessary to meet the goals and objectives I had for the market. It was basic hard work and fundamentals, and I tried to lead by example with constant communication with the branch managers, the lending officers, the regional retail managers and the investment consultants,” Mock said.
With this plan, Mock aimed to inspire his employees and envisioned becoming the number one market in the entire state for United Bank, which did not happen overnight, he said.
“I’m proud to say almost three years to the date of being promoted to market president we became the number one market at United Bank in our West Virginia franchise,” he said.
Now as senior vice president, Mock attributes his rugged work ethic and continued motivation to his family, the bank and determination for success.
“Certainly if you don’t have goals and you’re not setting benchmarks in your life, it is going to be difficult to really accomplish your career track. I want to continue to advance my career within United Bank. I want to embrace all the opportunities that are provided to me,” he said. “Nothing is given to you in the business world, and nothing comes easy. Every time you get knocked down, you have to bounce back up.”
Despite his countless work responsibilities, Mock makes certain to find time to be involved in community organizations and projects; for activities such as fishing, hiking and golfing; and most importantly, to bond with his wife, Juli, and their daughter, Haydon.
“I believe it is the civic duty as a working professional to become involved in community service projects, and during my career when I was in Beckley, West Virginia, I was a representative on several leadership boards,” Mock said. “I was also president of the Beckley Rotary Club, where I was heavily involved in community service projects, and was awarded the Paul Harris Fellow Award, the highest honor a Rotarian can receive for community service and club leadership.”
And one last dynamic force in his career and his life – his love for West Virginia.
“I’m very passionate and proud of my home state. I love the people and sense of community pride you feel in just about every region,” Mock said. “West Virginians always band together to help, support and encourage each other. I’m proud to call West Virginia my home.”