Face to Face: Tonganoxie’s Connie Torneden
Name: Connie Torneden
Occupation: Senior loan assistant at First State Bank and Trust in Lawrence. She also organizes Tonganoxie Days each year.
Born: Lawrence. Torneden notes that she is on the “wall of fame” in Dr. Phil Stevens’ office. Stevens has composite photos of babies he delivered.
Family: Husband, Lawrence; son, James.
Interesting fact: Torneden plays the clarinet. She played in the Tonganoxie Community Band for several years and likes to still play in her spare time. She’s also played occasionally at Vintage Park for residents there.
Digging deeper: Torneden has lived all her life in Tonganoxie. She graduated from Tonganoxie High School in 1973 and then attended Kansas City Kansas Community College for a year. She received her business certificate there before working briefly at Torneden Tax Service. On June 7, 1974, she started working at First State Bank and Trust and has been with the institution ever since.
She started out as secretary for all of the bank’s loan officers and held other jobs within the company after that before becoming senior loan assistant.
Torneden said she’s enjoyed living in Tonganoxie through the years.
“It’s changed a lot since I was a kid,” she said. “There are houses now where it was just farm ground.”
Torneden said she’d like to see more businesses take up vacant spots in the downtown area.
She said she remembers when Fourth Street had two grocery stores and every building was occupied with a business. It also meant trying to find a parking spot was no simple task.
As much as she looks forward to Fourth Street's future, she also is a fan of history, including the local variety. Torneden is a board member for the Tonganoxie Community Historical Society. She noted that some older generations of her family are mentioned in exhibits within the historic site's museum.