; Former client persuaded accountant to become banker
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Former client persuaded accountant to become banker

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Cripe started her career in a public accounting office in Dickinson, N.D. George Ehlis, a farmer and bank CEO, was a tax client. My farm experience was really limited, Cripe said, and tax laws for farmers are complex. She made mistakes on a couple of Ehlis' tax returns, which required rounds of follow up and rework. I thought, he must think I am a blundering idiot. Two years in a row I had to talk to him about his tax return and errors I had made, she said. So Cripe was a little surprised when Ehlis stopped into the accounting office one day and asked whether she planned to be an accountant forever. She was further surprised when an officer of Ehlis's bank followed up a little later with an invitation to lunch. The subtle recruitment effort lasted more than a year, until Cripe, who never thought I would be a banker, became a commercial lender at Ehlis's American State Bank.

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