Prior to joining the Bank of North Dakota, George Thompson was associated with the James River National Bank before moving to Bismarck in 1933 and taking a job at BND in the transit department. He held many positions within the Bank before becoming the credit department manager.
After Bill Guy forced Theodore Sette to resign, the Industrial Commission was deadlocked in its efforts to name a new manager. The two more conservative members of the Commission refused to endorse Guy’s nominees, and Guy vetoed their choices. The Governor is first among equals on the Industrial Commission. He can veto decisions made by the other two. During this impasse, a period of political upheaval in which Guy was accused of being a bully and a tyrant, and Guy accused his opponents of obstructing economic development in North Dakota, the three members were at least able to agree to make George M. Thompson acting Bank manager.
Thompson was nobody’s first choice, but he managed to hold on to his position until 1968, when Guy won an unprecedented fifth term as Governor or North Dakota. Guy now accepted Thompson’s retirement, but the Governor’s enemies exacted a significant concession. A Bank Advisory Board was created to supervise the State Bank of North Dakota and protect it somewhat from the political dynamics of the elected Industrial Commission.
Thompson was married to his wife, Edith, who preceded him in death in 1970. He died December 19, 1977 at the age of 74 in Sun City, Arizona.