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When Salvatore Marranca became president and chief executive officer of Cattaraugus County Bank in 1982, the banking world was very different.

The Little Valley-based bank did not have branches aside from its main office. It did not have an ATM, and customers lined up on payday because electronic transactions were not the norm.

Marranca has guided the bank through the wave of technological changes that followed, not to mention the ups and downs of the economy. Now he is preparing to step aside.

Marranca, 67, said he still loves what he does and isn’t the type of person to count down the days until his retirement. But he felt it the time was right for a transition: “If it’s not now, when’s it going to be?”

Customers and employees will have time to get used to someone other than Marranca as the bank’s top executive. The board of directors named Michael Wimer to become president effective March 17. Marranca plans to continue in the role of CEO through the end of 2014, after which Wimer will add those duties, as well. And Marranca will remain on the board after that, so look for him to stay involved.

Cattaraugus County Bank used a human resources firm to hunt for candidates, and a four-person committee, which included Marranca, interviewed four finalists.

“It’s a long process,” Marranca said. “We have our challenges, to look for senior management succession in the rural Southern Tier.”

The committee wanted someone with technical know-how as well as solid communication and leadership skills. Marranca knows from experience how the person in that job becomes closely identified with the bank in the community. “Everything we do here is one-on-one relationships,” he said.

Wimer was, for 10 years, the president and chief executive officer of Swineford National Bank, based in Central Pennnsylvania. In a statement, he said the transition period “will ensure the continuation of CCB’s focus to remain safe, sound and independent.”

Marranca said the upcoming year will help Wimer get acclimated. “It’s going to be a lot of getting to know our service area and getting to know our people.”

Marranca is not only the face of the 112-year-old bank he has led for more than three decades, he has been an advocate for community banks, previously serving as chairman of the national Independent Community Bankers of America. Before joining Cattaraugus County Bank, he was a senior federal bank examiner in Buffalo for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

Cattaraugus County Bank has eight banking offices and about $185 million in assets. In Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties, the bank had combined deposit market share of 6 percent as of June 30, 2013, ranking No. 8, according to the most recently available FDIC data. Cattaraugus County Bank also has a branch in Erie County, in Springville.

email: mglynn@buffnews.com