Fort Pierre Development Corporation

First National Bank of Fort Pierre Is FPDC’s February Business of the Month

February 15, 2024

First National Bank of Fort Pierre – Here 94 Years & Still Going Strong!

According to Shad Ludemann, Branch President of First National Bank of Fort Pierre, the late former Governor Frank Farrar first became involved in banking in the late 50s, early 60s.  He began purchasing banks in Iowa and bought the Pierre First National Bank in 1979.

Ludemann said, “First National Banks has expanded into 10 states with a total of 55 locations in South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Illinois, Colorado, Iowa, and Nevada. The interesting thing people will find is that our holding company is right here in Pierre as well.  All the decisions, daily management, policies – all center right here out of Pierre. People are surprised to know that Pierre is the hub of First National Bank.”

Ludemann stated “Once again First National Bank has received a #1 rating from Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).” He said, “This a rating for safety and soundness and First National Bank has been a “#1 bank for a long time.”  The Fort Pierre branch manages four banks: Fort Pierre, Murdo, Midland and McLaughlin.

Ludemann was recently re-elected to the Fort Pierre Development Corporation (FPDC) board and has served as board president and treasurer in the past and now serves as FPDC vice president. Always quick to sponsor or be involved in community events, Ludemann and his FNB crew have been FPDC’s “chili cook-off champions” more than once, including in 2023.

Ludemann said, “My family is from Fort Pierre. My grandpa and grandma moved here when they were building the dam (Oahe).” He grew up in Pierre and graduated there.  He said, “I was fortunate to come back to Fort Pierre and my wife works here as well; we live in Fort Pierre.”

When asked about interest rates, Ludemann responded, “Right now prime is at 8.5%.” He continued, “In our opinion that is higher than we want it to be. It’s a ‘double-edged sword’; the depositors are pretty happy with interest rates right now because they are able to earn quite a bit on their investments. It’s definitely affecting demand to some degree; we see some slow-down as far as loan demand is concerned.” He said, “The Fed has said they are looking at lowering rates this year so we are expecting to see rates go down late spring, early summer.”

“Home loan rates are based on bond rates and backed by the federal government and are right now around 6-7 percent which isn’t too bad.” Ludemann said, “If there was something you needed to buy right now with interest rates going down and you were in a position to do so, I wouldn’t hesitate.”

Ludemann said, “I don’t think there was anyone who hadn’t been effected by the economy: workforce shortages, supply shortages, interest rates and Ludemann added child care and housing shortages to the list. He said, “They are all things FPDC is working on and should continue to work on. Supply shortages are getting better.  It’s not 100% back to where it was and I don’t know if it ever will be.” Ludemann applauded Marcia Hultman, Cabinet Secretary for the Department of Labor, who spoke at the FPDC Annual Meeting. He said, “She has a lot of information and was well spoken.” He agreed with Hultman, saying “I think anything you can do to get someone hired, you probably should do.”

When asked about “startups and closures, Ludemann said there had only been a few which is reflective of the resilience of people here. According to Ludemann, the fluctuation in interest rates from high to lower again over 36 months is not typical and people are “trying to navigate the scenario and see where it all shakes out.”

Footnote:  According to information found online at First National Bank’s Linked profile, they are a family-owned community bank, started in Pierre, South Dakota in 1934. In 1992 First National Bank bought the historic Fort Pierre National Bank at 119 Deadwood Street in Fort Pierre. In 2007 First National Bank moved from the downtown location to Teton Island in Fort Pierre.

Become a FPDC Member

For membership information, please contact the FPDC at: or
(605) 223-7603