Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by, and welcome to the CrossFirst Q4 2019 Earnings Call. At this time, all participants are in a listen-only mode. After the speakers' presentation, there will be a question-and-answer session. [Operator Instructions]
I will now hand the conference over to your speaker today, Matt Needham, Director of Investor Relations.
Welcome, and thank you for joining us today on the call. On the call are George Jones, President and CEO of CrossFirst Bankshares; Dave O'Toole, Chief Financial Officer of CrossFirst Bankshares; Mike Maddox, President and CEO of CrossFirst Bank. As a reminder, a telephonic replay of this call, our earnings release and presentation, will be available on our Investor Relations website for an extended period of time.
Before we begin, let me remind you that everyone on this call that this call may contain certain statements that constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. We caution investors that actual results may vary or may differ from expectations indicated or implied in our forward-looking information. We provide a comprehensive list of risk factors in our SEC filings, which I highly encourage you to review. Any forward-looking statements speak only as of today, and we undertake no obligation to update them, except as required by applicable securities laws.
Reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the nearest comparable GAAP measures have been included in the release, and all earnings materials discussed today are provided in a diluted per share basis.
I'd now like to turn the call over to George Jones.
George F. Jones
Thank you, Matt. Good afternoon, everyone. We appreciate everyone taking time today to be with us, as we discuss our fourth quarter and full-year results.
Before we start, I'd like to take a brief moment to thank the management team and all the employees for delivering on the initiatives that we've put in place. Our teams have done a great job, executing on our strategic plan for 2019, which shifted the Company's focus to improving net income and driving earnings per share. As we discuss our results, you'll see that management and our entire team did a very good job of controlling expenses, and creating positive operating leverage without hindering our growth initiatives for 2019. As you've seen in our earnings release, we continue to produce record results and operating revenue for the 23rd consecutive quarter. And overall 2019 was the best year in the Company's history.
For the fourth quarter, we delivered record net income of $11.4 million or $0.22 per diluted share, which brought the net income for 2019 to $40.6 million or $0.83 per diluted share. Management focused on earnings per share growth, by lowering our efficiency ratio through management of back office expenses, and building our balance sheet responsibly. We continue to strengthen our quarter-over-quarter earnings, despite declining interest rates, because of our strong management team, dynamic markets, and proven operating model that we've built over time.
Our teams continue to deliver strong annualized double-digit
Director of Strategy and Investor Relations
George F. Jones
Director; President and Chief Executive Officer
Director; Chief Financial Officer and Chief Investment Officer
Director; President and Chief Executive Officer of the Bank
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