September 26, 2014


Cybersecurity Stays in the Spotlight, GBA Promotes Security Tips

News of another data breach this week at the Jimmy John's sandwich chain and Home Depot's confirmation late last week that more than 56 million cards were exposed to hackers kept retail and bank cybersecurity in the headlines. GBA continues to promote good card security habits, encouraging consumers to use the electronic account notification and other tools to closely monitor every transaction, among other tips. Atlanta's WXIA TV interviewed GBA's David Oliver, SVP-Communications and Marketing, about precautions consumers can take. (Note, the specific places the report recommends not using a debit card are from another source.) Also, FDIC Chairman
Martin Gruenberg
reiterated his year-long focus on cybersecurity during the American Banker's Annual Regulatory Symposium. "In an increasingly interconnected banking environment, Internet cyberthreats are rapidly becoming the most urgent category of technological challenges facing our banks," he said. "The large number [of] and sophistication of cyberattacks directed at financial institutions in recent years does require a shift in thinking." He noted FDIC tools and programs that can help banks, including a pilot of cybersecurity assessments at 500 community banks and an online simulation exercise to help community banks measure readiness. Read more here. The Wall Street Journal this week reported banks are beginning to see fraudulent transactions on accounts linked to the Home Depot breach. It also reported that in 2013, fraud losses from existing bank accounts and credit-card accounts rose 45 percent last year to $16 billion, according to Javelin Strategy & Research, a consulting firm that is a unit of Greenwich Associates LLC.


Related resource: Information Security Officer Seminar Oct. 16


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Another Business Judgment Rule Decision Handed Down

The Supreme Court of Georgia this week issued a decision in the FDIC v. Skow case answering certified questions about Georgia's business judgment rule and the responsibility of bank directors and officers. The decision answers the questions by directly citing the recently issued ruling by the court in the FDIC v. Loudermilk case, which said the general business judgment rule does apply to bank directors and officers, but that liability may exist if while making decisions he or she "fails to exercise the diligence, care, and skill of 'ordinarily prudent men [acting] under similar circumstances in like positions.'" Read the Skow decision here...


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Tailored Supervision, Flexibility Get Nod from Three National Regulators

Federal regulators this week have been sharing a variety thoughts on community bank regulatory burden. On Tuesday, Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry said bank business models should drive supervisory approaches as opposed to only asset-size tests such as the $50-billion asset threshold for large banks set by the Dodd-Frank Act. At another event this week, Esther George, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, spoke up in favor of examiners having more flexibility during exams to make certain calls as opposed to a specific set of tiered rules by assets. Speaking at the Federal Reserve's second-annual conference on community banking, she and James Bullard, president and chief executive of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, told attendees examiner judgment and experience is key. Bullard said he "would be generally sympathetic to the idea that the individual regulator is on the ground and should have an opportunity to make certain decisions," reported American Banker...


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There's Still Time to Sign Up!

Great Crowd Set for President / CEO, Bank Counsel and Bank Accountant Conferences

We've got a big crowd coming to GBA's President/CEO, Bank Counsel and Bank Accountant Conferences scheduled Oct. 12-14 at The Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Reynolds Plantation, in Greensboro. There's still time to register for these events if you're still on the fence. The programs are packed with timely information at a great location. An economic update, commercial real estate trends, current trends in the banking industry and how they affect M&A, new lines of business, growth, branching and fraud prevention are a few of topics that will be covered. You'll also have several opportunities to network with your colleagues. Access links here to register online for these can't-miss events. With questions, please contact GBA's Susie McGehee at 404.420.2010.



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Compliance Conference Underway

Fraud and risk management, mortgage rules, fair lending, disparate impact and much more are on the agenda this week for GBA's three-day Compliance Conference in Macon. The conference this year was expanded to an extra day based on member feedback and the long list of key issues. A huge crowd of GBA member compliance professionals is attending, and the program wraps up Friday. Look for more details and photos next week.


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Walmart Rolls out Checking Account

Walmart this week started offering a new checking account through FDIC-insured Green Dot Bank. The GoBank account is available only in Walmart stores and costs $8.95 a month unless account holders have a direct deposit of at least $500 a month. The company said the product would not charge fees for overdrafts or bounced checks. The company will use a proprietary underwriting system as opposed to ChexSystems scores or credit bureau ratings, and the account is targeted toward unbanked or underbanked consumers. "Many Georgia banks offer low or no-fee checking accounts to any consumer with a reasonable credit history. One member has already told us how one of his bank's accounts is actually less expensive. We're looking into Walmart's product closely to fully understand how it works, the competitive challenge it may pose and regulatory concerns it raises," said Joe Brannen, GBA president and CEO. With comments, contact Joe Brannen, 404.420.2026, or Elizabeth Chandler, 404.420.2027.


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Financial Risk Management Conference Update

Learn about Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) from a Trusted, Local Expert

GBA's Asset Liability Committee is excited to welcome Keith Cureton as the opening speaker at GBA's 2014 Financial Risk Management Conference coming up Nov. 4 - 5 in Atlanta. Cureton specializes in Global Compliance and Ethics, Enterprise Risk Management at UPS. He will present "ERM - A Catalyst for Conversation." Here's a quick summary: Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) is often defined as a process to identify potential events that may affect an organization's ability to achieve its objectives. Learn how in the last seven yeas, UPS has worked to develop a process that not only works in it's culture, but is grounded in a few basic components that can work anywhere…including banks! Click here to see details and for registration and hotel information.


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Georgia Ranks Sixth for Job Growth

Georgia businesses added 79,300 jobs in the past year, which is sixth nationally, third in the Southeast and above the national average. The August-to-August job growth was the second largest in Georgia since 2005. Georgia's job gains came in several sectors, including computer system design, accounting, architectural and engineering, transportation and warehousing, retail trade, wholesale trade, construction of buildings, specialty trade contractors, ambulatory health care services, and hospitals, said a release from the Georgia Department of Labor.


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Last Call for the Georgia BankPAC Golf Classic - Oct. 1

Don't forget to register for Leadership GBA's 13th-annual Georgia BankPAC Classic scheduled for next Wednesday, Oct. 1, at The Club at River Forest in Forsyth. It's a great opportunity to invite your legislators and directors to meet and play golf with your colleagues. This two-person scramble tournament is sure to be fun plus you're helping GBA's StatePAC. Registration is $150 per person, $250 per team or $450 for a team and hole sponsorship (a $100 savings). The proceeds will be donated to the GBA StatePAC. To register, click here. Please call GBA's Susie McGehee at 404.420.2010 with questions about the tournament.


Georgia BankPAC Campaign Update

The 2014 BankPAC Campaign is coming along, but more help is needed to reach our FedPAC and StatePAC goals. Has your bank participated this year? Take a look at how your GBA Group is faring so far in the campaign and make your contributions this week if you have not yet done so. As a reminder, the GBA StatePAC accepts contributions from a state bank or the holding company of a national bank, while the GBA FedPAC accepts personal contributions from bank officers, directors and eligible employees. GBA Associate Members and Bank Counsel Members are also encouraged to contribute to the StatePAC. Here are the contribution forms for each PAC with suggested giving amounts for your use. With questions, please contact Elizabeth Chandler at 404.420.2027. Thanks to those that have already made their contributions including these companies that contributed to the GBA StatePAC:

  • Chattahoochee Bank of Georgia, Gainesville, Jody Lail, President & CEO

  • Georgia Primary Bank, Atlanta, David Coxon, President & CEO

  • River City Bank, Rome, Roger Smith, President & CEO

Thanks to these officers, directors and eligible employees of the following banks for their individual contributions to the GBA FedPAC:

  • Independence Bank of Georgia, Braselton, Terry Evans, President & CEO

  • Georgia Primary Bank, Atlanta, David Coxon, President & CEO

  • Queensborough National Bank & Trust Company, Inc., Augusta, Richard Peacock, SVP

  • River City Bank, Rome, Roger Smith, President & CEO

  • South State Bank, Savannah, John Helmken, CEO

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Survey Says…

Check Your Compensation Program against Your Peers

Get your copy of the GBA Compensation and Benefits survey now. It's a great tool for measuring how your pay and benefits program stacks up as you head into budget season. And, this year's results include member reactions to the effects of the Affordable Care Act on their programs. The survey results are available by email or hard copy to banks, Associate Members and Bank Counsel members that did not participate in the survey for $400. Banks that provided information for the survey can buy the results for $150. Order your copy today by contacting Kenyetta Parks at 404.420.2035.


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The Information Security Officer (ISO) Seminar - Oct. 16

Designed for Information Security Officers, Compliance Officers and network administrators, this seminar will highlight all the information you need to be a successful professional in this role. You will get a better understanding of the regulatory requirements and expectations, and we will define the internal roles and responsibilities including coordination with NetAdmin, reporting to the board of directors, leading the IT steering committee and the ISO's role in audits and examinations. Helpful checklists and white papers will be included. Registration is $225 for members and will be held at the Idle Hour Country Club in Macon. For more information or to register, click here. For personal assistance contact GBA's Danielle Driggers at 404.420.2015.


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FDIC Consumer Protection Workshop - Oct. 29-30

The FDIC Atlanta Region is pleased to announce the third installment of its Consumer Protection Workshop seminar series. This workshop is an interactive one-and-a-half-day event designed to provide information about current topics of interest and enhance knowledge of consumer protection laws and regulations. FDIC presenters and participants will include regional and local managers, regional specialists and compliance examiners. GBA and CBA are partnering with the FDIC Atlanta Regional Office to offer this informative workshop. This workshop is Oct. 29 and 30 at Idle Hour Country Club in Macon. See more info and download a registration flyer here. Contact Danielle Driggers, 404.420.2002, with questions.


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GBA-U Webinars

Avoid HMDA Mistakes, IRA Basics, CTR Reporting and Teller Excellence Courses

A GBA Webinar is a great way to quickly get the training you need right from the comfort of your office. Here is a sample of upcoming offerings. Check the GBA-U Calendar of Events for any webinars you are interested in at


Oct. 2

GBA Retirement Services Webinar: Things to Consider in Retirement Planning

Oct. 2

IRAs: The Basics

Oct. 2

Opening Trust Accounts: Documenting Authority and Liability

Oct. 6

Build a No-Excuses Sales Environment

Oct. 7

Analyzing Tax Returns for Mortgage Decisions

Oct. 8

Top 10 HMDA Reporting Mistakes

Oct. 9

Making The Transition - Consumer Lender To Commercial Lender

Oct. 15

Reporting Your Credit Data, E-OSCAR, METRO2, FCRA/FACTA & CFPB Compliance

Oct. 16

IRAs: Beyond the Basics - Huge "Rollovers" Rule Change

Oct. 16

Notary Public

Oct. 21

Ratio Analysis to Determine Financial Strength

Oct. 22

Mortgage Servicing Compliance: Meeting Extensive New Regulatory Expectations

Oct. 23

Currency Transaction Reporting: Line by Line

Oct. 28

UDAAP for the Board

Oct. 28

The 8 Keys to Teller Excellence

Oct. 30

IRAs: Way Beyond the Basics - Beneficiaries and Distributions


Webinars are live and allow time for questions and answers. The $255 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 Danielle Driggers at 404.420.2002.


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ABA Facilitated Online Training Courses for October

Accounting, Law and Consumer Lending among October Courses

Below are the ABA Facilitated Online Training Courses coming up in October. These courses have weekly assignments as well as midterm and final exams. All you need is a computer, printer and Internet access. Classes with an asterisk require Microsoft Excel Software. Please register two weeks in advance to secure a seat in the class. Employees of GBA member banks may register at the member rate. For more information, contact Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034.


Oct 14

General Accounting

Oct 14

Law and Banking: Applications

Oct 14

Principles of Banking Accelerated

Oct 20

Consumer Lending

Oct 20

Principles of Banking

Oct 27

Commercial Lending

Oct 27

Introduction to Mortgage Lending


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Specialized Marketing and Branding for the Digital Age from FMS

Digital marketing channels such as email marketing, social media marketing, blogs, online display advertising, search engine optimization, search engine marketing and mobile marketing are critical for earning new business from today's bank customers. Financial Marketing Solutions (FMS), a Strategic Partner of the GBA, is a niche branding and marketing agency solely serving the financial services industry. FMS can help you solve the riddle of how to attract and retain clients through digital channels. Encouraging clients to tap into the power of "brand" in a fresh new way, FMS empowers banks across the country to take their marketing to the next level, maximizing marketing dollars and delivering measurable results to the bank's bottom line. Through a strategic discovery process, FMS partners with your bank to narrow corporate initiatives into real and attainable goals, uncover and enhance your brand, create an identifiable image, and develop customized and trackable marketing solutions that integrate seamlessly across all channels and throughout all locations. For more information, please contact Sean Hockenbery of FMS at 615.591.2073.


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Build a Strong Card Portfolio with Help from Corserv Solutions

One of the most consistent themes we've heard from GBA member banks in the past couple of years has been the search for new sources of loan growth and revenue. One possible avenue is the Corserv Account Issuer credit card program. Corserv can help a bank systematically build a predictable, profitable, easily managed credit card portfolio. Consumer, small business and corporate card programs available. What's unique about the Corserv Account Issuer card product is that the bank originates, funds and keeps the account balances on its books. Corserv manages the operational and regulatory aspects of account management, including collections. Banks get speed to market with this new card product through Corserv's plug-and-play processes, policies and technologies to support the program. And, Corserv assumes total responsibility for card fraud. Give Corserv's Tom Dixon a call to discuss how Corserv's Account Issuer product can help your bank. Contact Dixon at 404.939.6933 (office) or 404.989.3765 (mobile).


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Find a Job, Post a Job with GBA Job Bank

The Georgia Bankers Association offers free job posting resources for our member banks. These listings can be viewed online or through our print publication, the GBA Bulletin, mailed every other week. Resume postings are also available. For more information, please contact Kenyetta Parks at 404.420.2035.


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GBA Community Connections

Charity Work Shines, Members Support Disease Awareness, Student Involvement and More

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 Bo Brannen and David Oliver, or if your company would like to sponsor this content, let us know. Here's our latest installment:


Athens - First American Bank & Trust

First American Bank & Trust’s fourth-annual “Grillin’ Up for a Good Cause” cookout, benefitting the United Way of Northeast Georgia, is Friday, Oct. 3. First American has set a goal of raising $16,500 in its 2014 United Way Campaign through fundraisers including the cookout, a drawing for a “Game Day Gift Basket,” and selling a “Cookbook for a Cause.”


Camilla – Planters and Citizens Bank

Bank team members recently wore purple in recognition of National Alzheimer's Awareness Day Sept. 21.


Dublin – Citizens Bank of Laurens County

This year is the Bank’s 11th year with its Student Advisory Council. The council is made up of seniors from Laurens County's four high schools. “We present a variety of programs, ranging from banking topics to volunteerism to our local city / county governments and our chamber of commerce / development authority," said June Moore, Sr. Vice President and Program Coordinator. “The group does a community service project, which members select, plan and carry out to completion.”


Marietta - Bank of Sandy Springs, a division of Midtown Bank & Trust Company

Bank team members recently were on hand supporting the Sandy Springs Festival. Team members handed out cookies and cold lemonade and give away a  50-inch flat-screen TV. The winner was Erin Rellinger (pictured below).


West Point – CharterBank

The bank recently announced the recipients of its 2014 Customer Voting Grant Winners. Every summer, bank customers have the opportunity to vote for local organizations in each of the bank’s regions to receive $5,000 grants. Below are photos of the recipients.


Planters & Citizens bank team members recently wore purple in recognition of National Alzheimer's Awareness Day on Sept. 21.

Members of the Citizens Bank of Laurens County Student Advisory Council for the 2014-2015 school year.




Charter Bank's LaGrange Customer Voting Grant Presentation to Hillcrest Elementary. Pictured are Melinda Haymond, CharterBank Regional Coordinator, and Pam Doig, Hillcrest Elementary Principal.

Charter Bank's Newnan Customer Voting Grant Presentation to the VFW Post 2667 - Newnan, GA, Meals On Wheels of Coweta, and the West Georgia Negro Business and Professional Women's Club. Pictured are, left to right, Kathy Shrader, Meals on Wheels, John Kolasienski, VFW, Lizabeth Andrew, Meals on Wheels, Ingrid Williams and Lillie Smith, West Georgia Club, and Ashley Schubert, CharterBank Regional President

Charter Bank's LaGrange Customer Voting Grant Presentation to Lafayette Christian School. Pictured are John Cippola, Headmaster of LCS, and Joe Ragland, our LaGrange Region President.


Your company can sponsor this GBA content to help promote how GBA members provide extensive support for communities around the state. Contact David Oliver for information.


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Atlanta - Fidelity Bank

The bank's holding company Fidelity Southern Corp., announced the completion of the previously announced acquisition of the deposits of six branches of CenterState Bank of Florida, N.A.


Atlanta - Private Bank of Buckhead

Carolyn Briner has joined PrivatePlus Mortgage, a division of Private Bank of Buckhead & Decatur as a Vice President and Mortgage Banker.


Atlanta - State Bank & Trust Company

The bank's holding company State Bank Financial has announced that all regulatory approvals for its proposed merger with Atlanta Bancorporation, Inc. have been received.


Gainesville - Peach State Bank & Trust

Deedra Anderson has been named Mortgage Administrator in the Mortgage Department at the Washington Street branch.


Johns Creek - KeyWorth Bank

Amber Askew has joined the bank as a Commercial Banking Assistant. Marissa Jordan has joined the bank as a Retail and Mortgage Processor. Shannon Johnson has joined the bank as a Financial Services Representative and Ryan Pendleton has joined the bank as a Credit Support Specialist.


LaGrange - Community Bank & Trust - West Georgia

Our sympathies to the family and friends of director Roy Spinks, who recently passed away.


Moultrie - Southwest Georgia Bank

The bank recently celebrated the opening of its new Commercial Banking Center adjacent to the bank's main Valdosta branch on North Valdosta Road with a ribbon cutting ceremony.


Briner Anderson Askew


Jordan Johnson Pendleton Spinks


Members of the Southwest Georgia Bank team at the opening of its new Commercial Banking Center in Valdosta.


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 Bo Brannen.


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