New Capricornian CEO Dale Grounds
New Capricornian CEO Dale Grounds

CQ banking boss back and better than ever

HE spent the last five years "living in a refrigerator” so the chance to head north was music to Dale Ground's ears.

The new CEO of the Capricornian (pictured) was living deep in the Central West of New South Wales managing a smaller financial institution when he was offered the job in Central Queensland earlier this year.

Dale applied for the position back in June and was lucky enough to snag the role, which he has now occupied for four weeks.

Originally from Brisbane, the businessman got his start in banking when he was just 18-years-old.

"I've been in banking since I was 18, I fell into it and just along the way picked up a degree in post graduate qualifications including a Masters while I was working full time to slowly progress through various financial institutions, in many different roles,” Dale said.

"That was the practical part of it, but the aspirational part of it was I set a goal about 10 years ago that I wanted to be a CEO of a credit union.

"So the subconscious mind worked on it while the conscience mind worked on it and it ended up happening. It was a very satisfying and it's has been an interesting ride so far.”

Dale said interestingly enough Central West NSW had a lot in common with Central Queensland when it came to the primary industries.

"There was a fair bit of commonality around the key industries of the area with beef, tourism and university...and coal mining as well.”

"It had a lot of commonalities to Rocky and I remember when I moved there at the time thinking there was that.

"They did have really decent wine though which we don't have here,” he laughed.

However it wasn't just the similarities in business which made Dale's transition into the Rocky area smooth.

"I'm from Brisbane originally and I worked most of my life in the Brisbane area and I came up here (to Rocky) in 2006 and spent my years working for the other financial institution here, with the Rock,” Dale explained.

"When they were taken over I was made redundant and took the opportunity to move back south.

"Now this opportunity and coming back to the region has certainly made the transition a wee bit easier.”

Dale said while the people may have changed in Rockhampton some other elements of the town remained the same, but either way he was happy to be back in Queensland for many reasons.

"The key positions around town are the ones I was aware of last time and I've connected with some people I haven't met and reconnected with a few.”

"I also support Queensland passionately in the Origin and being a passionate Queensland supporter based in the deep dark midst of New South Wales was satisfying but a little unnerving,” he laughed.

Having only been in Rockhampton for four weeks Dale hasn't had a chance to get involved in activities outside of work, but says he plans to.

"I've always had a strong interest in a range of activities and I've been involved in not for profit activities donating time and effort in previous roles,” he said.

"I will look to try to give something back to the community in a direct way here; who, where and what are yet to be determined.”

Dale looks forward to building on what is already a great business which has served the community well.

"First and foremost I feel very lucky to get this role because the Capricornian is a very strong institution already, it's been the recipient of much love and attention over the last 60 years. We are well positioned for future growth.”

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