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Wendy Reuer, Published January 28 2013

Bell State Bank & Trust majority stockholder dies

FARGO – Thomas “Mickey” Snortland, a majority stockholder in Fargo-based Bell State Bank & Trust, died Sunday.

Snortland died at his Fargo home of an apparent heart attack.

The 63-year-old active farmer in Sharon and a longtime director and board member of the area’s largest privately owned bank, was known to most as “Mickey.”

“Mickey was loved by the Bell State Bank family and will be very much missed,” said Richard Solberg, chairman and CEO of Bell State Bank.

Solberg said the Snortland family has been a part of the bank since it was founded in 1966. Mickey’s father, Thomas “Buck” Snortland, was one of the bank’s founders.

Solberg said Snortland was an entrepreneurial spirit who played a major part in the bank’s success. Bell State Bank & Trust is the largest privately owned bank in North Dakota, Minnesota and South Dakota, with assets of more than $2.6 billion.

“He has just been an iconic part of our company and a huge part of its success,” said Michael Solberg, Bell State Bank president and Richard’s son. “(He was) very humble, very generous. Oftentimes, the banking industry is dominated by people focused on earnings, but Mickey was very focused on people.”

Snortland is survived by his wife, Julie, and four children.

Visitation will be from 5-7 p.m., followed by a prayer service at 7 p.m., Thursday at Boulger Funeral Home in Fargo. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m., Friday at First Lutheran Church in Fargo.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Wendy Reuer at (701) 241-5530