July 1, 2016          

Good Headlines Flow for Georgia Banks

Several Georgia banks have been recognized for their industry leadership and performance recently. The July issue of American Banker magazine profiles Synovus Bank for its recovery from the economic downturn. The bank is rated No. 2 on the magazine's list of best bank reputations. Synovus CEO Kessel Stelling and others are quoted about how the bank focused on taking care of its customers, its charter consolidation process, the tough calls about staffing it had to make and focus on community involvement that helped change the company’s reputation coming out of the recession. In another good report, Independent Banker magazine published several top-performer lists that had Georgia standouts among the top-10 in several asset-size categories for ROAA and ROAE, including...

Chandler Recognized for Leadership

We’re big-time proud of Elizabeth Chandler, our senior vice president of Government Relations, for the great work she does for members. This month’s Georgia Influencer magazine features Chandler on its cover and in a profile piece about the strong, patient leadership she exhibits as an advocate for Georgia’s banks and the state’s business community. Chandler recently wrapped up her term as the chair of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce’s Government Affairs Council. Access a link to the article about Chandler here...

What Does Brexit Vote Mean for Banks and Investments?

The surprising vote in the United Kingdom to exit the European Union late last week sparked a quick stock market drop and kicked off a round of analysis about what the short- and long-term effects may be on banks, the global economy and investments. Several GBA members weighed in with significant reports. The general consensus seems to be that the near-term effects will be limited for banks not exposed to international markets. Those with energy and export exposures could see negative effects, and the overall uncertainty could lead to a slowdown in lending by banks concerned about risk. The other takeaway is that the decision will likely put the brakes on any sort of rate increases by the Federal Reserve, which could stress net interest margins for banks. Overall, investors were advised to be alert about high volatility but to keep thinking long term and look for buying opportunities in some sectors. Here are links to some of the reports from members…

Gas Station Job Taught Bibb Extra Effort Wins Business

A steamy summer job at a gas station while in high school taught Ken Bibb a couple of valuable lessons. “Giving a little extra effort for every customer can make a big difference in where people choose to do business,” he says was one key lesson. He also said he figured out real quick he wanted to get an education so he could work at a job with air conditioning. Bibb is the president of the Geo. D. Warthen Bank in Sandersville and GBA’s new Secretary / Treasurer. Learn more about Bibb in this week’s GBA Member profile...

GBA Advocacy on the Road

Why Banking is Perfect for Millennials

Banking has a lot to offer the millennial generation, said GBA President and CEO Joe Brannen, during a banking update for the North Gwinnett Kiwanis club Tuesday. Banking’s technology and convenience, high-touch advisory capacity and service mindset in the community make it a natural fit for the younger generation looking for authentic business relationships as well as careers, he said. He also covered the recent good performance of the state’s banks, regulatory hurdles, technology highlights and security reminders for the group. Brannen was the guest of Jody Lail, president and CEO, Chattahoochee Bank of Georgia.

GBA BankPAC Campaign Kicks Off Strong

The 2016 campaign material for the BankPAC fundraising efforts was mailed to every CEO earlier this month and the response so far is strong. The GBA BankPAC Board of Directors wants to ensure that participation from all GBA member banks follows and they will be contacting fellow CEOs soon. The GBA StatePAC and GBA FedPAC contribution forms as well as the payroll deduction form for the GBA FedPAC may be accessed here to get the campaign started in your bank. To date, the following organizations and individuals have contributed to the GBA BankPAC…

Asset / Liability Committee Talks Shop

Georgia bank CFO’s and other top banking finance experts that serve on GBA’s Asset / Liability Committee met this week in Macon to talk trends and begin planning the annual GBA Financial Risk Management Conference. Among the trends discussed were possible implications of the United Kingdom’s “Brexit” vote to leave the European Union, liquidity issues, regulatory burden, an uptick in mortgage demand in some rural markets, recent exam experiences and ideas for branch profitability analytics and decision-making tools for retail leadership. Committee Chair Martha Brown, Independence Bank of Georgia, Braselton, led the discussion. The conference is Nov. 16-17 at the Atlanta Marriott Northwest Hotel. The conference agenda will be finalized soon, but you may register now if you like...

Community Bankers Committee Looks Ahead

GBA's Community Bankers Committee met Thursday to share best practices, review market conditions and beginning planning the GBA President & CEO Conference. Committee Chair David Coxon, Georgia Primary Bank, focused the discussion toward looking ahead for issues that can help banks thrive. Some of the general topics covered were capital planning ideas, attracting and retaining talent, managing cyber risk, marketing community banking for its products, services and as an employer, and thoughts on the current geopolitical and economic environment. Dawn Griffin, Liberty First Bank, Monroe, is the committee vice chair. This year's conference is Oct. 2-4 at the Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Reynolds Plantation at Lake Oconee. The full conference agenda and speakers will be available soon. You can go ahead and register now. With questions, contact Susie McGehee, 404.420.2010.

From One Banker to Others...

Why Attend GBA's Leadership Conference?

Leadership GBA’s annual Leadership Conference is July 18-21 at the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club. Ponte Vedra, FL. Brad Barber, CEO of First National Bank of Decatur County, Bainbridge, recently shared his thoughts on the benefits of Leadership GBA and the conference:
“Being a part of Leadership GBA was a tremendous, beneficial experience for me. It helped prepare me in many areas of my banking career. Attending the Leadership Conference for many years added to my growth and development as a banker, created numerous networking relationships and introduced me to the legislative process. In today’s banking environment our younger bankers require resources such as Leadership GBA to prepare them to be leaders tomorrow.”
There are a few rooms available at the Ponte Vedra Inn at a reduced rate of $219 to $239 per night. Make reservations by calling the hotel directly at 888.839.9145. Be sure to say you are with GBA to get this special rate. You can access the brochure here and register online here. With questions about the conference or Leadership GBA in general, please contact GBA’s Susie McGehee at 404.420.2010.

Crime and Punishment

Bank Card Fraudsters Headed to Prison

Stefon D. Clark, Ayanna Johnson and Quantaves Curry, all of Atlanta, have been sentenced to three years, five months in federal prison for conspiracy to commit bank fraud in connection with their scheme to deposit fraudulent checks at BB&T, USAA, and the Navy Federal Credit Union. The defendants participated in a bank fraud scheme that lasted at least 17 months, compromised more than 240 bank accounts, and resulted in more than $600,000 in losses to three financial institutions. Read more here...

The Latest on FASB's CECL Model and How to Prepare

Join Randy Rabe of Credit Risk Management Analytics for a the details of the new model, including how it will change the allowance calculation and how to best prepare for the changes, at GBA’s Regulatory Hot Buttons Workshop Aug. 24 at Idle Hour Country Club in Macon. Presented in partnership with KPN Consulting, this program features a variety of experts covering industry trends and providing insight about the appropriate way to navigate the independence decision, regulatory capital expectations and regulatory relations in a compliance-oriented environment. Other sessions include...

The ISO: Regulatory Requirements and Internal Roles

Join Tom Hinkel of Safe Systems Aug. 30 at Idle Hour Country Club in Macon to learn more about the ISO’s role in audits and examinations, coordination with network administrators, leading the IT Steering Committee and more. Current and prospective information security officers, network administrators and compliance officers will all benefit from this seminar. Participants will receive helpful checklists and whitepapers as well as certificates of completion. The price for this event is $225 per person through Aug. 22 and $250 per person for registrations received on or after Aug. 23. Click here to register online. Please contact GBA's Katina Prokos at 404.420.2021 with questions.

Compliance Conference Coming Your Way September 14-16

Calling all compliance professionals! Be sure your calendar is marked for the 2016 GBA Compliance Conference Sept. 14-16 at Middle Georgia State University Conference Center in Macon. The GBA Compliance Committee has put together an excellent slate of topics and presenters that will benefit new and veteran compliance professionals alike. Once again, your compliance team may attend the full conference, or you may choose to come to the Risk Management module (Day 1) or the Loan Compliance module (Days 2 and 3). More about the Compliance Conference here...

GBA-U Webinars

A GBA Webinar is a great way to quickly get the training you need without travel or time out of the bank. Webinars are live and allow time for questions and answers. The $265 registration price gives you access to one web site "seat," one telephone site license and all handout materials. If you can't attend the webinar, you may buy the audio CD, handout materials and a password to see the session online. With questions, please contact GBA's Katina Prokos at 404.420.2021. Here is a sample of upcoming offerings. Check the GBA-U Calendar of Events at www.gabankers.com for more details.

Banking Fundamentals, Mortgage Intro, Supervisor Certificate among ABA Training Highlights

Instructor-led ABA online courses have weekly assignments as well as midterm and final exams. All you need is a computer, printer and Internet access. Please register two weeks in advance to secure a "seat." For more information, contact Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034. Click here for a list ABA instructor-led courses for July…

Don't Forget These GBA Events Coming Up Later in 2016!

  • Compliance Conference - Sept. 14-16, Macon
  • President/CEO Conference - Oct. 2-4, Greensboro
  • Bank Counsel Conference - Oct. 2-4, Greensboro
  • Bank Accountant Conference, Oct. 2-4, Greensboro

The GBA Job Bank Gets Results

The GBA Job Bank is among the most popular and valuable benefits we provide to member banks and bankers. The Positions Available and Bankers Available sections on our website consistently are among the most visited pages. Best of all, the service costs nothing for member banks and bankers. To make the process of posting a job or resume easier and to answer any questions you may have, we've developed this Q & A document as a resource. It outlines how to submit open positions and resumes, our deadlines and timelines for posting, and other helpful details. If you have any questions, please contact GBA’s Kenyetta Parks at 404.420.2035.

Vendor Management Resource

VendSure is GBA's Endorsed Compliance Information Exchange

GBA is pleased to endorse VendSure by Fortrex Technologies, the industry's first compliance information exchange. A secure, online central repository accessible to financial institutions and vendors, VendSure facilitates due-diligence documentation exchange and alleviates the strain involved in the process of disseminating and collecting due-diligence data. Designed for banks of any size, the portal includes automatic document tracking, mapping and notifications capabilities. Learn how VendSure can help improve the efficiency of your bank's third-party due-diligence process and ease your bank's compliance burden here. To schedule a demo of this solution, please contact Fortrex's Doug Ochs at 877.367.8739.

GBA Community Connections

We want to share all the good work GBA member banks, bankers, Associate Members and Bank Counsel Section members do to support their communities. Share your Community Connections by sending a brief paragraph and any photos of activities you have to us and we'll publish them at our earliest opportunity. Send information to Bo Brannen and David Oliver. Here's our latest installment...
GBA E-Bulletin Sponsor: CrediTrained
Providing outsourced credit training and underwriting services

Read All About It: Send Us Your News

Please remember to include the Georgia Bankers Association on the list of recipients for announcements about promotions, new employees and special recognition your bank has received. We want to share your news with your colleagues across the state. Please forward your announcements and photos to GBA's David Oliver and Bogan Brannen.