After 44 years working for Dakota Western Bank, Lois Miller will be putting away her business cards for good Friday.
She is retiring.
The vice president of operations at the bank actually started at the Bowman branch when it was new in the 1970s, after graduating from Rhame High School and taking business courses at Dickinson State College.
She would spend most of her time at the bank behind the scenes, starting originally as a proof operator – working with checks and cash.
She explained Friday she was still behind the scenes as she prepared for her final week of work. “I never worked in the front line. I just always kind of worked in the back office with the core programming and accounts payable. One thing I did for quite a few years was to close out the books for one year and start the next year.”
“I’d make sure you got the proper amount of interest (on accounts), making sure the interest rates would be correct – and fees were properly programmed,” she explained.
As to what the future would hold for the former Rhame resident, she said that it would be a time to relax. “I am pretty much a homebody. I do some travel, but not too far. It will just be R and R at this point (rest and relaxation). I will just travel within the Tri-State area.”
Though she has been living in Bowman for some time, the family still has property they rent near Rhame. “We still have some farm acreage south of Rhame, with some livestock.”
The renters wanted to live in the country and we wanted to live in town, she said.
Gardening is something she admits that she has enjoyed over the years. “I would share with family, friends and co-workers. When we have an overflow, we would have to get rid of it somehow,” the proud Rhame Pirate graduate said.
She has been married for more than 30 years and her daughter graduated from Bowman High School after Rhame joined with Bowman.
“It (the bank) has been a great place to work. The management really appreciates their employees,” Miller said.
It was just time to go, she explained. “It is time to collect Social Security and time to pass on the baton” she said.
Over the years, there has been some changes in how the financial institutions operate. “Interest helps on the lending side, but on the deposit side.....,” she stopped, her voice trailing off. “It is not very good on the deposit side.”
Because of the pandemic, there isn’t a retirement party scheduled, she said. “Due to COVID, there won’t be anything public.”