The Journal Gazette
Tuesday, March 15, 2016 4:33 pm

Longtime leader of city bank dies

Frank Gray | The Journal Gazette

Paul E. Shaffer, retired president and CEO of Fort Wayne National Bank, died Sunday in Fort Wayne. He was 89.

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Dorothy, and two daughters, Paula McCallister and Patti Shaffer.

Shaffer was born near Rockford, Ohio, and served in the Army Air Corps during World War II. After the war, he started at Rockford National Bank and completed several American Banking Institute correspondence courses.

By 1948, he was appointed an assistant national bank examiner, and joined Fort Wayne National Bank in 1952 as a trustee in the commercial loan department. He was elected assistant cashier in 1955, assistant vice president in 1956, vice president in 1960, executive vice president in 1967, president in 1968, and chairman and CEO of Fort Wayne National Corp. in 1970. The bank is now PNC Bank.

Shaffer retired in 1995.

As CEO, the bank’s asset grew from $200 million to $2 billion, and earnings rose from $1.5 million to more than $20 million.

Shaffer graduated from the graduate school of banking at the University of Wisconsin and returned there every summer to be a lecturer on commercial bank credit. He also completed the commercial bank management program at the graduate school of business at Columbia University.

The American Bankers Association designated him a certified commercial lender, he served on the association’s governing panel and was president of the Indiana Bankers Association.

Shaffer was a supporter of Junior Achievement for 61 years and was named to the organization’s Business Hall of Fame.

He was a director of the Chamber of Commerce, a director of the Indiana State Chamber of Commerce, a director of the Downtown Fort Wayne Association, a member of the Corporate Council, president of the Credit Bureau of Fort Wayne, and a director at Group Dekko International, Caylor Nickel Hospitals and Lyall Electric, and a board member and chairman at Magnavox Government and Industrial Electronic Co.

He was also involved with many charities and civic organizations, and long had a great interest in IPFW, donating a scholarship each year and chairing fund drives for the school. He was awarded a doctor of humane letters from IPFW, which awards a Paul Shaffer Medal to a person each year.

Services will be at 11  a.m. Saturday at Trinity English Lutheran Church, with calling from 2 to 4  p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at Klaehn, Fall and Melton Funeral Home on Wayne Street. 

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