Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Charles B. Crawford, Jr. is a serial entrepreneur who enjoys the thrill of starting something new, even if that involves some risk by moving on from a previously successful enterprise.
“You often build something great, then move on, in whole or in part,” Crawford said. “The key is that it feels much less risky if you’ve built teams and other alliances along the way. That is, you’re never really starting from scratch if you can bring others along for the adventure. I’ve taken the ‘starting something new again’ risk several times because it is exciting and fun to build something new, and can be profitable, if done right.”
Today, Crawford is chairman and CEO of Hyperion Bank, a full-service community bank with the mission “to connect with customers via technology and highly accessible, experienced, enthusiastic bankers who have local decision-making authority,” the bank said.
“Hyperion Bank’s pledge: We bring community banking to you. You might say it is banking the way it used to be: Personalized banking solutions tailored to individuals and businesses across a full slate of products and services.” The bank recently celebrated its 15th anniversary and moved its Atlanta banking office into a larger space.
The operation also has an office in Philadelphia. In June, Crawford was recognized as the Pennsylvania Banker of the Year by the Pennsylvania Association of Community Bankers. “Being named the Association’s Banker of the Year really came out of left field for me because I am involved in that great organization and see up close the incredible talent we have among community bankers,” Crawford said.
“I firmly believe my secret weapon in garnering such recognition is and was what I call ‘Team Hyperion.’ That is the terrific employees, business partners and shareholders who every day keep hitting and exceeding expectations. That same incredible team also helped make this past year amazing by helping us continue to grow.”
Crawford has an MBA from Georgia State University and now teaches in the university’s entrepreneurship and innovation department. His undergraduate senior-level course is titled “Scaling a New Venture,” and he brings in friends, colleagues, business partners and customers as guest lecturers in the course.
Crawford is also a member of the Atlanta Regional Advisory Board for CareerSpring, a platform designed to serve first-generation students and graduates through information, advice and placement, recognizing that many first-generation students do not have the info, network or social capital to realize their potential. He serves on the advisory board for the Fischer-Shain Center for Financial Services in the Fox School of Business at Temple University.
“Now, later in my career, I often take risks by sharing what I have learned,” Crawford said. “For instance, I took a risk by beginning to teach an entrepreneurism class at Georgia State University, but it’s made easier by my support network, with a bonus that I’m learning as much from my students as I am teaching them.”
Recognition via the Georgia Titan 100 provides an opportunity to shine a light on the people who make me and our customers successful “ employees, business partners, shareholders and even peers. I hope I tell them often enough that I may step up and receive an award on our behalf, but they are doing the daily work that's at the heart of this success. The Titan 100 platform has been a terrific balance of structure and freeform networking. The structure is there to provide us with venues, programs, mileposts and introductions; from there, some terrific networking has evolved.