Chris Rubio of Wells Fargo in Napa Valley has won one of North Bay Business Journal’s Latino Business Leadership Awards.
Tell us your story and that of your organization:
My family is from Chapala, Mexico. I am the oldest of eight children and grew up in Tulare, California. At a very young age, I worked in the fields picking prunes and walnuts. As I was the oldest, I helped my parents take care of my youngest siblings and with the chores. I learned about hard work and responsibility early on in life. From Tulare, we moved to a cattle ranch in Wooden Valley, California. I attended Napa High School and became President of FFA.
At age 18, I was drafted into the Army and served in combat in Vietnam as a Sargent E-5. After Vietnam, I become more involved in my community. In 1981, I married Pam and as she was also very involved in the community, we became the dynamic duo.
While working at Beringer Winery, I introduced the winery to many nonprofits, which they supported. At the age of 45, I went back to college to pursue a BA in Business Management from St. Mary’s College while having a full time job. I was active in T-Ball, 4-H, Chamber of Commerce, the Boys & Girls Club, Napa Valley Fair Livestock Board and the Kiwanis Club.
After earning my degree, I went into banking and joined Wells Fargo as Business Development Officer. I continued my community outreach. I joined the American Legion, volunteered with the Veteran’s Home and counseled returning veterans. I joined the Wells Fargo Advisory Board along with other community leaders. I was able to continue to be active in the community in large part to Wells Fargo.
Wells Fargo prides itself on identifying and supporting programs that strengthen the communities it serves because when our communities succeed, we all do. In fact, last year Wells Fargo gave more than $1.8 million to schools and nonprofit organizations in Sonoma, Marin, Napa, Solano and Mendocino counties. Wells Fargo has allowed me to do what I do best every day which is giving back to my community
Is there a major accomplishment in the past year or so that you would like to share?: My wife and I just celebrated 17 years working at Wells Fargo.
What is the achievement you are most proud of?: At the age of 45, I decided to go back to college and graduated from St. Mary’s with a B.A. degree in Business Management.
What is your biggest challenge today?: Keeping up with technology
Words that best describe you: Dedicated and loyal
As a successful professional, what were the biggest obstacles you faced and how did you overcome them?:
I would say separating the business from the personal. However, by staying active in my community, I strive to become the face of my business so that when people think of banking, they think of me
How do you think your profession will change in the next five years?: I think technology will be everywhere in the workplace and people will be doing everything online and probably less in person visits. Everything can be done online now, think how it will be in 5 years from now?
Who was your most important mentor?:
Business development officer
Wells Fargo Bank
1107 Main St., St. Helena 94574