Sept. 25, 2020

Agency Briefings Held this Week

GBA Chairman-Elect Luke Flatt, lower middle, asks Fed Gov. Bowman (top left) about TDR treatment

GBA officers, board members and other members interested in national regulatory issues participated this week in a series of virtual regulatory agency briefings about key issues, rulemaking schedules and supervisory trends. On Tuesday, CFPB’s Bryan Schneider, associate director, Supervision, Enforcement and Fair Lending Division, covered the bureau’s updates. Topics included its supervisory approach during the pandemic and updates on its upcoming proposal for small business data collection as required by the Dodd Frank Act. On Wednesday, we heard from FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams and panel of senior leaders in a variety of the agency’s departments. McWilliams explained some of the rationale for the agency not signing on yet to a CRA modernization framework, and the staff answered questions related to regulatory flexibility for asset-based thresholds due to temporary asset growth due to PPP funding, treatment of modified loans, and third-party vendor due diligence, among other issues. Thursday’s briefing with the Federal Reserve featured Fed Governor Michelle Bowman. Bankers heard a brief economic update, and Gov. Bowman answered questions about the FedNow payments system and its CRA modernization proposal, among other issues. On the agenda Friday are sessions with the Acting Comptroller Brian Brooks of the OCC, as well as a joint briefing with top-level officials at the Treasury Department and the SBA. Here’s a summary of all the major regulatory and legislative issues we’re all tracking and working on during advocacy meetings. GBA participated with colleagues from other Southeastern state bankers associations, and the briefings were coordinated by ABA.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Statewide Deposits up 12%

As more families have bolstered savings as opposed to investing, and with an influx of PPP funds during the pandemic, deposits at the 199 banks doing business in Georgia increased by $30.4 billion (12%) from June 30, 2019, to June 30, 2020. The FDIC summary of deposits out late last week reported in-state deposits of $286.7 billion. Of the 199 banks doing business in Georgia, 155 are Georgia-based institutions. The number of offices or branches serving customers reported is 2,259, which is four more than last year. Click here for a PDF of the market share report.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

More Advocacy for Simplified PPP Process

We are covering all the bases to support an affidavit-type forgiveness process for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of less than $150,000. Last week GBA joined state bankers associations from around the country in urging Treasury Secretary Mnuchin and SBA Administrator Carranza to use their administrative authority to approve the simplified approach. This is in addition to our ongoing efforts to support legislation in both houses of Congress to authorize a simple form. Read the letter here.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Black Toomey

Thanks for Banks as Part of State’s Ag Infrastructure

Georgia’s Agriculture Commissioner, Gary Black, and Public Health Commissioner, Dr. Kathleen Toomey, asked us to share a letter of thanks with GBA members as part of Georgia’s agriculture community for the sector’s COVID-19 response. “Because of the ongoing response to COVID 19 in Georgia, our citizens are safer, students are returning to school and our economy is rebounding. Every Georgian should be grateful for the dedication and commitment of businesses and organizations, both public and private sector, considered critical infrastructure,” the letter says. We appreciate the recognition. Read the letter here.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

GBA Executive Strategy Tri-Conferences - See You Sunday!

We look forward to welcoming a great group to GBA’s Executive Strategy Tri-Conferences, Sunday - Tuesday at the Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee. Registrants received a hefty email Tuesday from our GBA professional development team, with important final reminders and info on the conference mobile website. A sincere thank-you to our event sponsors: EBS; Elliott Davis; FHLB of Atlanta; McNair, McLemore, Middlebrooks and Co., LLC; and ServisFirst Bank. Contact GBA’s Kathy Friestad with questions.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Women in Banking Series - Session 2 on Oct. 1 - Managing, Leading and Coping in Uncertain Times

We are so excited that over 300 bankers and associate members in 15 different states are participating in the Women in Banking Virtual Series, a joint GBA and North Carolina Bankers Association program available to bankers all over the country. If you haven’t signed up yet, you are in time to participate in next week’s live virtual session, “Managing, Leading and Coping During Uncertain Times,” with Dr. Melissa Furman, MS, DBA. Furman’s passion for guiding individuals with career, professional, and leadership development inspired her to launch Career Potential to help individuals achieve and organizations succeed. With 20 years of academic training and experience. Melissa is known as a subject matter expert and provides a knowledge of diverse learning styles. Register now: Access the remaining five live sessions and a recording of our first session.


A huge shout-out to our series sponsors - click here to see the complete list, along with info on all upcoming sessions. Contact Kathy Friestad with questions.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Compliance Conference, Oct 21-23, Buford

NEW Live Streaming Option if You Can’t Make it in Person

In addition to a star-studded agenda full of national experts, we’ve added one more reason why this year’s GBA Compliance Conference is a must-attend event for bank compliance pros. We’ve set up a live-streaming option so those with travel restrictions, health concerns or other conflicts can tune in to the sessions. The conference will feature an inspiring leadership talk from André Kennebrew of Chick-fil-A, sessions on risk assessments, national regulatory updates, hemp banking, advertising compliance, working as a team within the bank, fraud-prevention during disasters, human trafficking awareness BSA and CRA updates, and more. See the full agenda here and secure your spot by registering here. With questions, contact Alison Moreau. We’re working closely with the hotel to ensure a clean, comfortable environment. Hotel protocols info. GBA protocols info. Hope to see you in October!


Special Thanks to Our Sponsors!


Emerald Sponsors


Gold Sponsors


Silver Sponsor


More sponsorship opportunities are available. Contact GBA's Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034, for more information.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Fraudulent Check Alert

Members this week shared a fraud alert with us we wanted to pass on to other banks. Peach State Bank has seen a rash of counterfeit cashier’s checks being passed. Among the tipoffs to look for are the misspelling of MoneyGram (Moneygeam) and that the checks are blue, as opposed to the official green checks issued by the bank. The remitter name is consistently Ryan Schnitzler, and they were all dated Sept. 15, 2020. Contact Sarah Blalock, 770-531-2746, or Andy Stewart, 770-531-2770.

Back to top of E-Bulletin

Financial Risk Management Conference - Nov. 5-6

Learn all the Best Trends in ALM Approaches

Bank financial management pros will want to attend the GBA Financial Risk Management Conference this year to hear a peer panel dive deep into asset and liability management strategies and best practices. Moderated by Joel Updegraff, managing director, Depository Fixed Income Services, Truist Securities, the panel will feature Chris Bond, EVP/COO/CFO, Morris Bank, Jane Skelton, CFO, Georgia Primary Bank, and Scott Wilson, CFO/EVP, Pinnacle Bank. This is one of several panel discussions scheduled during the conference for maximum idea sharing. See the hotel’s protocols for wellness and safety as well as GBA’s approach to health and wellness at in-person events. We'll set up sessions and activities to ensure as much social distancing as possible. Please help us plan by registering early if you plan to attend. Get full details and access registration here. With questions, contact Alison Moreau. Hope to see you in November!


Back to top of E-Bulletin

New IRA training offering!

GBA Webinar: Understanding the SECURE and CARES Acts of 2020

Join Patrice Konarik, Sunwest Training Corp., for a special one-day webinar on Understanding the SECURE and CARES Acts of 2020 from the convenience of your home or office on Oct. 27 (9 a.m.-4 p.m. EST). After a year of deliberations, the SECURE Act was signed into law under the Appropriations Act on Dec. 20, 2019. Most of the provisions went into effect 12 days later on Jan. 1, 2020. These are the most substantial changes we’ve had to IRAs in almost 15 years. On top of that, the CARES Act was passed three months later, further making rules and regulation changes to IRAs. Because of this, you may have to do some explaining to your customers on what the permanent changes are and what the temporary changes are due to the COVID-19 virus. In the IRA Advanced webinar, we will summarize the changes and then actually get into the nitty gritty of new distribution regulations to owners and beneficiaries - what stays the same and what changes? How do we disclose all these changes to our customers? Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions during the virtual training. View the full description here. Each paid participant will receive the latest 275-page 2020-2021 IRA Training and Reference Manual - “The Red Book” in an electronic format for printing for these virtual classes. Register here (only $250 through Oct. 19!) Questions? Email Jenna Lynn Warner.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

2020 BankPAC Campaign Going Strong!

Since the 2020 BankPAC Board of Directors kicked off this years’ campaign, the response has been strong! See how your GBA Group is faring here. The campaign materials, including contribution forms for both the GBA StatePAC and FedPAC, may be found on the BankPAC page of GBA’s website. We appreciate all of our contributors and want to thank this week’s banks contributing to the GBA StatePAC:

  • Ameris Bank. Palmer Proctor, President & CEO

  • DNB Financial Services, Douglas, Stuart Smith, President & CEO

  • WestSide Bank, Hiram, Ford Thigpen, President & CEO

And, thank you to the contributors to the GBA FedPAC who are eligible employees, officers and directors from the following banks:

  • Ameris Bank. Palmer Proctor, President & CEO

  • First Port City Bank, Bainbridge, Scott Ewing, President & CEO

  • Morris Bank, Dublin, Spence Mullis, President & CEO

  • The Piedmont Bank, Peachtree Corners, Monty Watson, President & CEO

  • WestSide Bank, Hiram, Ford Thigpen, President & CEO

Thank you for your support of this important effort! With questions, please call Elizabeth Chandler at 404.420.2027.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

GBA Retirement Services Meeting Held this Week

The GBA Retirement Services Board of Directors, led by Chuck Copeland, First National Bank of Griffin, held its quarterly meeting this week by virtual Zoom call. The Board consists of these nine community bankers who oversee the employee retirement benefit program trusted by over one third of Georgia’s community banks. The Board meets regularly with the discretionary trustee and investment manager of the Trust, Unified Trust Company, to review the investments we offer and ensure we offer a top-notch, high quality, low cost 401(k) option for plans of all sizes. Through this volatile year in the stock market, the conservative investment approach taken by Unified Trust has protected participants’ retirement accounts, particularly those near retirement. A managed account option is used by over 87% of the 3,000 participants in the Master Trust, ensuring that participants are well diversified and have proper guidance to succeed in retirement. As of June 30, the Trust has over 64% of its participants on track to replace 70% of their income in retirement. The industry average is only 25% to 30% of participants on track, so we are proud that we have more than doubled the industry average. With assets approaching $200 million, being a part of the GBA Master Trust allows smaller plans, including plans of banks, associate members and bank clients, to gain buying power for an effective 401(k) solution for participants.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Home- and Hobby-Related Industries Faring Best

Georgia’s Building Materials, Garden and Supplies sectors have as done the best throughout the pandemic, followed by the Sports, Hobby, Book and Music sector, and Furniture, according to consumer spending data compiled by GBA Associate Member Fiserv. Glenn Fodor, Fiserv’s head of data and analytics, detailed this insight as well as a variety of other economic and industry trends in a member webinar last week. Here’s a copy of the presentation Fiserv gave permission for us to share. With questions, contact Fiserv’s Matt Shugart.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Credit Conference, Dec. 10-11, Atlanta

Full Spectrum of Credit Conditions to be Covered

Registration is open for GBA’s 2020 Credit Conference, scheduled for Dec. 10-11 at the Atlanta Marriott Renaissance Waverly Hotel. To kick things off on a positive note, Laura Hope Whitaker, ESP executive director will open the conference with by sharing her story - “Sometimes you choose your job, other times your job chooses you.” Other confirmed speakers are John Hunt, principal, MarketNsight, president, ViaSearch, on the housing market; Jeffrey Harvey, director, Public Policy Department, Georgia Farm Bureau, on the ag environment; Mike Allen, Cadence Bank, about credit quality trends, and Roger Tutterow, Ph.D., Kennesaw State University, with an economic update. We will also have a regulatory panel moderated by Mark Kanaly, partner, Alston & Bird. Joining the panel will be Michael Johnson, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, John Henrie, FDIC; Jason Sisack, OCC; and Kevin Hagler, Commissioner, Georgia Department of Banking & Finance. Click here to register. With questions, contact Alison Moreau. Thanks to the committee chair Stacy Brantley, Morris Bank, and vice chair Philip Bernardi, Oconee State Bank.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Get Out on the Clubs for a Great Cause - BankPAC Golf Classic is Oct. 21 in Forsyth

There’s a hint of fall in the air, and that means we’re getting closer to Leadership GBA’s Georgia BankPAC Golf Classic. This annual fundraiser for the GBA StatePAC* will be on Oct. 21 at the River Forest Golf Club in Forsyth. Invite your customers, directors, and legislators to spend a relaxing day with you and your banking colleagues. It’s just $275 for a two-person/$175 per individual golfer. Or, pay $500 for a two-person team AND hole sponsorship. Click here to register. You can also show your support of the PAC through sponsorship, like these banks and associate members: CSRA Business Lending; EBS; FHLB of Atlanta; FNBB; Great Oaks Bank; Holmes-Shaw Agency; MPA Systems; Point to Point Environmental; Pinnacle Bank; ServisFirst Bank; The Baker Group; and The Claxton Bank. Click here for the sponsorship form or contact GBA’s Kathy Friestad, 404.420.2024.


* The GBA StatePAC contributes only to candidates running for state-level office such as the Georgia General Assembly, the Governor’s office and the Lieutenant Governor’s office. Contributions can be made from an individual, from bank funds if you are a state-chartered bank or from a national bank holding company if the contribution is made from funds other than those resulting from the operations of the national bank.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

With Discover® Debit, Your Bank Will Develop a More Profitable Debit Program

The Discover Debit program makes your brand stand out above the rest. The list of Consumer and Business Card Benefits available through Discover’s program are simply unmatched. Here are just a few of the valuable options your bank can choose from:

  • Lowest Purchase Price Guarantee - Consumer

  • Identity Theft Defense - Consumer

  • Zero Liability - Consumer

  • Human Resources Consultant - Business

  • Attorney on Call - Business.

Discover Debit is also the only program that delivers superior economics, simplified rules, fee transparency and unmatched program flexibility. Discover Debit is an offering of the PULSE Network, a Discover Company. With questions, contact Mark Reda, 813.854.2210.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Fall Webinars: HR Basics, Training Tips, TRID and HMDA Sessions

We appreciate members choosing the programs we offer for your ongoing needs. Check out these upcoming virtual offerings. View the full calendar here for dates, times and more programs. With questions, email


Save 10-30 percent with a subscription package details here!

Back to top of E-Bulletin

Recruit, Retain and Develop the Best Bankers with GBA Career Solutions


GBA Job Bank - GBA will post open positions, free of charge, for GBA members. See the open positions in Georgia here. We will also post professional summaries for bank-job seekers on our Bankers Available page. To make the process easy and answer any questions, we've developed this Q & A. Please contact Katina Prokos, 404.420.2021.


GBA Strategic Partner BankTalentHQ - The central feature of BankTalentHQ is its national bank-job board. Other key benefits include: resume search access, regional and national reach for your open positions, frequent special offers and custom sales/coaching programs. Visit BankTalentHQ to learn more. See the open positions in Georgia here, or search regionally or nationally here.


GBA’s Career Paths for Bankers™ - GBA’s Career Paths for Bankers™ is the most unique, organized and easy-to-use career development resource available for bankers and banks. GBA’s pioneering career development resource is unlike any other in the banking industry. Click here to start mapping your banking career today.


Why do people choose careers in banking? Whatever their talents, interests and educational background, there is a career in banking for them. Here are few good reasons to share with folks you know.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

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. Read all about the Community Connections our banks and members have below. 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 Katina Prokos and David Oliver, or if your company would like to sponsor this content, let us know. Here's our latest installment:


Atlanta and Charlotte, NC - Truist and Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs (ACE)

Truist Financial Corporation has announced a $40 million initial donation to help establish CornerSquare Community Capital, a new national nonprofit fund that will support selected community development financial institutions (CDFIs) through the purchase of 25% loan participations. ACE, the largest small-business-focused CDFI in Georgia is among the initial group of CDFIs that will partner with the fund to increase lending to racially and ethnically diverse small business owners, women and individuals in low- and moderate-income communities, with a focus on African American-owned small businesses. Read more here.


Back to top of E-Bulletin



Atlanta - Southern First Bank

Lane Perno recently joined the bank’s Mortgage team.


Bainbridge - First Port City Bank

Marvalynn Carroll has been promoted to Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Risk Officer.


Columbus - Synovus Financial Corp.

Longtime Southern Company executive Pedro Cherry, was recently appointed to the board of the holding company.





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 Katina Prokos.

Back to top of E-Bulletin