With the banking industry struggling and the country in the midst of a recession Stuart Lubow has managed to buck the trend.
Lubow, the president, chairman and CEO of Community National Bank (CNB), has kept the bank in the black through “old school nuts and bolts banking,” according to Lubow.
But for CNB to compete with the big banks they have to separate themselves. “We try to become a fabric of the community,” he said. “It’s hard to find customers of large banks that love their banks.”
He added that once banks get to a certain size the needs of individual customers aren’t as important, but “our customers aren’t just a commodity.” That’s why he knows that if they compete with the big banks “we’re going to win.”
Lubow, born and raised in New Jersey, attended Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in accounting. He started working at Chase right out of college. He has worked in banks small and large and he says this has allowed him to see where the opportunities are. This is where he discovered the importance of the community and the customers’ needs.
Community National Bank, which is headquartered in Great Neck, is a full-service commercial bank, offering a wide array of deposit and loan products. Founded by Lubow in April of 2006, it has been a leader in community banking.
Lubow believes to be successful within the community you must also be active in it. He wants the bank to be involved in events that are important to the local community. Lubow said he wants to understand the local needs of his customers because that allows the bank a better opportunity to help them.
“We understand that a small or medium sized business looking to expand has specific needs and we try to structure our financing and deals to meet the customer’s needs,” he said, adding that they are not only a bank, but a financial advisor. This allows them to give advice to the customer that will put them in the best possible position to succeed and as a result the bank will too.
As the number two SBA lender in Long Island, Lubow says he recognizes that “small business drives our economy; it’s what makes our country great.”
He added that while he expects CNB to continue to grow, he will continue to keep their community bank culture intact.
With seven branches in Nassau and Suffolk, CNB will soon be coming to Queens. A Bayside location, on Bell Boulevard one block off of Northern Boulevard, will be opening, hopefully by the end of the first quarter, according to Lubow.
Lubow, a business person of the year in Garden City and Great Neck, has worked as a banking executive for over 30 years. Lubow was executive vice president and chief operating officer at Garden State Bank prior to founding Community State Bank, where he was president and chief executive until it was acquired by Lakeland Bank.
CNB is open seven-days-a-week, with 24-hour ATM’s at every location.