Dec. 17, 2021  

Ag Committee Convenes in Macon

Colony Bank’s Nic Worthy led the GBA Ag Committee in it’s program planning meeting Thursday in Macon. Worthy is the committee chair this year, and he teamed up with Vice Chair Rachel Thompson, Bank of Newington, in facilitating a thorough conversation among members. Members shared updates on market conditions in their service areas, weighed in on key economic and policy challenges and began planning the annual GBA Rural Development and Lending Conference. Among the issues covered were crop and livestock updates, the effects of higher input prices, equipment supply challenges, real estate appraisals, the USDA’s new food supply chain loan guarantee program and regulatory exam experiences. The 2022 conference will be May 19-20 at the King & Prince Hotel on St. Simons. Registration and program details coming soon. With questions, contact Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034.


Worthy (far left) leads the meeting The GBA Ag Committee in session Thompson adds her perspective


Back to top of E-Bulletin

GBA Joins Industry Support for Independent, Orderly FDIC

GBA signed on to an industry letter from 51 state bankers associations and the ABA to all members of the FDIC Board in support of an independent FDIC and an orderly, transparent policymaking process. The letter was in response to the drama that unfolded late last week in advance of the agency’s Dec. 14 board meeting, with former Chairman Martin Gruenberg, CFPB director Rohit Chopra and acting Comptroller Michael Hsu attempting an end-run around FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams related to a disputed notational vote they made approving a request for public commentary on the FDIC’s bank merger policy. The Chairman traditionally sets the agenda for items up for consideration by the full board. The dispute is whether the three directors had the authority to call for, hold and publish the results of the vote without approval or agreement from the FDIC Chairman. Read the letter here. With questions, contact Joe Brannen, 404.420.2026, or Elizabeth Chandler, 404.420.2027.



Back to top of E-Bulletin

Three Georgia CDFI/MDI Banks Awarded Capital to Deploy in Underserved Areas

Georgia-based Camilla Bancshares, Inc., Carver Financial Corporation and Citizens Bancshares Corporation are among 187 institutions awarded a total of $8.7 billion this week in funding to help support small and minority-owned businesses and consumers through the Emergency Capital Investment Program (ECIP). Under the program, the U.S. Treasury Department will provide capital directly to these depository institutions, which are certified Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) or minority depository institutions (MDIs) to, among other things, provide loans, grants and forbearance for small businesses, minority owned businesses, and consumers, especially in low-income and underserved communities, that may be disproportionately impacted by the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Amounts awarded to each institution were not disclosed.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Kentucky Bankers Relief Fund to Help Storm Victims

Our colleagues and bankers in Kentucky have mobilized to help their fellow citizens affected by the major tornado outbreak last weekend. “We have [member] banks in each of those counties [affected].  Each of those banks, even if not hit directly by the tornado, are suffering losses in their communities—loss of power and communication services, loss of property and, most sorrowfully, loss of life. … We also know that the entire banking community, within and outside Kentucky’s borders, is keeping those suffering in their thoughts and prayers and that we all want to do what we can to help,” said Ballard Cassidy, president and CEO of the Kentucky Bankers Association. If you and your bank want to help out, tax-deductible donations may be made to the Kentucky Bankers Relief Fund, Attn, KBA, 600 W. Main St. Suite 400, Louisville, KY 40202. Contact Nina Gottes with questions,


Back to top of E-Bulletin

New Food Supply Chain Loan Guarantee Opportunity

The USDA has launched a new loan guarantee program to back private investment in processing and food supply infrastructure that will strengthen the food supply chain. The agency will deploy $100 million to make available nearly $1 billion in loan guarantees, it says. This may be a good program for member banks in markets with significant agribusiness operations. USDA is accepting electronic applications from lenders through the Food Supply Chain Online Application System until funds are expended. Thanks to Randy Griffin of CSRA Business Lending for flagging this for GBA and its members. Full details here.


Back to top of E-Bulletin


Hotel Cut-Off Dec 22 for Legislative/Economic Forum

AJC’s Political Guru Greg Bluestein Added to Legislative/Economic Forum Agenda

Don’t delay in registering for and getting hotel reservations for GBA’s Legislative and Economic Forum & Legislative Reception coming up Jan. 12 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta Downtown. Our forum agenda will include Jeffrey Dorfman, the State Fiscal Economist of Georgia and a professor of economics at The University of Georgia, a look at Georgia politics from Atlanta Journal-Constitution politics and government reporter Greg Bluestein, and Georgia Department of Banking and Finance Commissioner Kevin Hagler. The room block at the Hyatt is full, and the hotel deadline for our additional block at the Loews Atlanta in Midtown is Wednesday, Dec. 22. The Loews is about a 10-minute drive from the Hyatt. Call 888-563-9736 to reserve a room and be sure to mention you are with the Georgia Bankers Association to ensure your room is at that $279 group rate. The forum will be from 3-6 p.m., followed by the reception from 6-7:30 p.m. Click here to register. A huge thank you to event sponsors FHLB of Atlanta and ServisFirst Bank, Correspondent DivisionClick here for details and to reserve your sponsorship. Questions? Contact GBA’s Kathy Friestad.


Back to top of E-Bulletin


Meet (or Re-Introduce Yourself to) New GBAIT Team Member Jayn Lawson

It’s always fun to introduce new GBA and GBA Insurance Trust co-workers to our members. Please join us in welcoming Jayn Lawson to the GBA Insurance Trust family. She started work on Nov. 1 with our GBA Insurance Trust team as Manager, Member Support, having previously served in human resources roles at several GBA member banks over the years. “GBA always provided me with the resources needed in my Human Resources positions. From informative training and conferences to quality insurance and retirement products the GBA Insurance Trust offers, the entire staff at GBA always provided me with a level of customer service that is second to none. In my new position as Manager-Member Support at GBAIT, our members can expect the same excellent level of customer service from me that they have received from Susan Kelly and Lee Belaus for so many years,” Lawson said. She shares about two of her career mentors who were pivotal in shaping the professional she is today, her favorite place to relax and more in her GBA Staff Profile. You can reach Jayn at 404.420.2002 or


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Opportunity Upcoming for Financial Literacy Outreach

FDIC is setting up a new initiative called the Youth Connections Collaborative to help enhance financial literacy, banking access and banking career availability for low- and moderate-income young people in Georgia. The goal of the Youth Connection Collaborative will be to empower youth by:

  • Conducting financial education

  • Providing opportunities to open safe and affordable bank accounts

  • Participating in workforce development activities, including promoting banking as a career option.

The YCC will connect providers of these services, including banks and community-based organizations, with organizations that need these services for low- and moderate-income youth, including schools/colleges, non-profits, and government agencies. Membership may be eligible for CRA credit, and there will be benefits of strengthening ties to community and government agency partners. We encourage members to consider participating. There’s a kick-off meeting on Jan. 25 from 1:30-3:30 p.m. to cover the structure of the collaborative, priorities and committee membership and leaders. A GBA representative will be participating in the meeting. With questions, email FDIC’s Elaine Hunter, community affairs specialist at Please register using the following link -


Back to top of E-Bulletin



Back to top of E-Bulletin

Internal Data Integrity Review Checklist from GBA Partner Abrigo

As your BSA/AML monitoring output is tied directly to the data being imported into the system from your core, it is critical that the data quality being imported is correct and contains all the pertinent information to be included for reporting/monitoring purposes, OFAC and 314(a) requirements, etc. Data should be monitored and reviewed regularly to ensure any errors are corrected to provide better output for the BSA/AML monitoring system. This data integrity review checklist published by GBA partner Abrigo, outlines steps to help you complete this task. Download this checklist to learn:

  • Key steps to get started with the process of reviewing data integrity

  • Information to pull from your core/teller systems and BSA/AML systems

  • Actions to take post-review to remediate any issues discovered.

Click here to download the checklist and contact Abrigo’s Laura Whal, / 919.906.5649. if you are looking for additional help with your institution’s data integrity review.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

2022 Operations and Technology Conference - Feb. 23-25, Savannah

Next Gen Payments Program: Are you Behind or Aligned?

GBA’s Operations and Technology Conference is scheduled for Feb. 23-25, 2022, at The DeSoto hotel in Savannah. One session you won’t want to miss is “Next Gen Payments Program: Are you Behind or Aligned?” presented by two payments experts, Terri Sands, managing director, Payments, Compliance, Investigations, and Financial Crimes Division, Stout, and Kristy Powell, treasury manager, Morris Bank. This session will include a community bank walk through today’s programs, financial institutions’ struggles and how banks are slowly or quickly aligning with technology. Discussion points will include technology investments of digital payments platforms and API solutions, reorganizations of people and workflows and building out enterprise payments risk and strategic governance. The rest of the agenda is almost finalized, and sessions will include cryptocurrency and emerging technology, FinTech relationships, digital marketing, cybersecurity, core vendor relationships, best practices and much more. Associate Members are eligible to sponsor, exhibit or both sponsor and exhibit. Thank you to our sponsors already confirmed: ServisFirst Bank - Correspondent Division and Wipfli. Get all the details and register here. With questions, contact GBA’s Alison Moreau.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

GBA’s Endorsed Credit Card Program from ServisFirst Offers Unmatched Service and Support

GBA is proud to recommend the agent credit card program offered by ServisFirst Bank. Through the program, GBA members can issue credit cards to their customers, both commercial and retail, with their bank’s logo. ServisFirst provides a simple, straightforward program that includes credit card marketing and portfolio management services at no cost to the bank. Get more details about the ServisFirst Bank agent card program contacting ServisFirst’s Tim Finney,, 478.952.6497, or Karen Grahn,, 205.949.0330. Click here for credit card program testimonials.


Back to top of E-Bulletin



Back to top of E-Bulletin

2022 Sponsorship and Exhibit Opportunities Kit Available Now!

As your team plans your company’s marketing and event budget for 2022, there’s no better time to reserve your participation in GBA’s 2022 events valuable to your company. Click here to access the 2022 Sponsorship and Exhibit Opportunities Kit.


Menu of 2022 GBA events open to sponsorships:

  • Annual Signature Events: Annual Meeting and Leadership Conference

  • Annual Professional Development Conferences: Compliance; Financial Risk Management; Credit; HR; Security; Operations/Technology; Rural Development & Lending; and Women in Banking

  • Annual Schools: Georgia Banking School and GBA Compliance School

  • Seminars: Various

  • Webinars: Various

See the last page of the kit for event dates or visit our home page at to access our 2022 event calendar.


Ready to sign up? Complete the response form in the kit and submit it to Kathy Friestad.


Have questions? Our professional development team will be happy to discuss your 2022 involvement strategy so that your company gets maximum benefit from this important investment. Email GBA’s Kathy Friestad to request a call or meeting.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Two New Seminars Set: IRA and Commercial Banking Basics

  • New! The IRA Merry-Go-Round Seminar - Feb 8-9, Middle Georgia State University, Macon
    Patrice Konarik, Sunwest Training Corp, is back with an intensive 2-day seminar that will teach you all you need to know about IRAs, including the latest updates! Each participant will receive the latest 275-page, IRA Training and Reference Manual - “The Red Book.” For all the details and to register, click here.


  • New! Breaking into Banking 101 Webinar - Feb. 23, Zoom Webinar (recording included w/ registration)
    Commercial banking can be intimidating because of its complexity and the risk-oriented nature of the work. Andy Keusal, Keusal Learning, teaches this course with a clear and thorough introduction to the key concepts, terminology, and processes involved in credit and lending. It doesn’t assume much prior knowledge of the topic, so it’s ideal for those in their first year in the industry. Learners will walk away with a clear understanding of their job and how their specific role fits into the bank’s overall profitability goals. Get all the details and register here.

Back to top of E-Bulletin

Mark Your Calendars!

GBA 2022 Winter/Spring Conferences

Mark your calendars and save the date for the following 2022 winter and spring conferences!

  • Operations & Technology Conference - Wednesday, Feb. 23, through Friday, Feb. 25, at The DeSoto, Savannah. Registration now open!

  • HR Professionals Institute - Wednesday, March 23, through Friday, March 25, at the King & Prince, St. Simons.

  • Marketing Conference - Thursday, March 24 through Friday, March 25, at the King & Prince, St. Simons.

  • Bank Security Conference - Monday, April 11, through Wednesday, April 13, at the King & Prince, St. Simons.

  • Rural Development & Lending Conference - Thursday, May 19, through Friday, May 20, at the King & Prince, St. Simons.

With questions, contact GBA’s Alison Moreau.


Back to top of E-Bulletin

Join live or purchase a recording!

Excel Explained, Third Party Risk Management, Fee Disclosures and More Webinars

Webinar Subscription Packages: If your institution attends at least five webinars per year, a webinar subscription package is a no-brainer! Click here for more info.

See our full calendar of webinars here. 


Back to top of E-Bulletin



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:


Athens - First American Bank & Trust Company

For more than 15 years, the bank has had a tradition of participating in the Salvation Army Angel Tree program. This year, employees collected hundreds of toys and clothing items for donation.


Savannah - First Chatham Bank

Through donations from customers and staff, the bank was able to support the Union Mission with toys and gifts this holiday season. UMI Savannah is an agency serving the homeless and at-risk population in Savannah and surrounding areas.


Suwanee - Quantum National Bank

The bank is finishing up the year by donating to local organizations The Drake House, Rainbow Village and Home of Hope. For Rainbow Village, the bank included 20, $50 gift cards for their residents as well.




Rainbow Village


Home of Hope

The Drake House

Watkinsville - Oconee State Bank

The bank was the presenting sponsor for the Oconee County Chamber of Commerce’s Tinsel Town Holiday Market. The bank sponsored the bags guests were given to use during their shopping experience and its Marketing department handed out hot chocolate to attendees.


The bank also participated in the Watkinsville Christmas Parade on Dec. 5. After the parade, the bank sponsored a hot chocolate station during the Christmas Tree lighting, and the bank also sponsored the décor for the Christmas tree in front of the Oconee County Court House.


Back to top of E-Bulletin



Atlanta - Ameris Bank

The bank announced this week that it has acquired Balboa Capital Corporation, an online provider of business lending solutions to small and mid-sized businesses nationwide. Read more here.


Atlanta - Cadence Bank

Cadence Business Finance announced this week the addition of Oz Lindley, senior vice president, managing director of originations for the Southeastern United States. Lindley is based in Atlanta.


Camilla - Planters & Citizens Bank

Chief Risk Officer and Internal Auditor Charlotte Kirbo has announced her retirement from the bank on Dec. 30. Kirbo has been with the bank for 42 years. You can send her a note here.


Dublin - Morris Bank

Market President Anna Swicord was recently appointed to the bank’s Bulloch County Advisory Board and will be transitioning to a new position as Business Development Officer. John Roach is the incoming Market President.


Louisville - Queensborough National Bank & Trust Company, Inc.

Vicki Anderson has been named market manager of the Swainsboro-Emanuel County market. Read more here.


Metter - Durden Banking Co., Inc.

City President Gail Curl this month is celebrating 50 years as a Georgia banker. Curl began her career in November 1971 at Metter Banking Co. (later acquired by BB&T). She joined Durden Banking Co. in 2001. The bank surprised her this week with a 50-year award, including a recognition plaque from GBA.


Rincon - First Chatham Bank

Rincon office Branch Manager April Brackin recently received the Beacon Award as Ambassador of the Year from the Effingham Chamber of Commerce.


Washington - F&M Bank

Tiffany Callaway has been named retail operations officer, and Logan Denard has been named loan officer. Ben Danner has joined the bank as a loan processor.


Watkinsville - Oconee State Bank

The bank recently hosted its quarterly team meeting, where Dani Williams received the JK Wages 2021 award, Jenny Farias received the Golden Cupola award, Philip Edwards received the Top Producer of the Year award, Phillip Jackson received the Loan Support Team Member of the Year award, Shannon Johnson received the Retail Team Member of the Year award and Candice Meeler received the Volunteer of the Year award. All are pictured below with bank President and CEO Neil Stevens.


Pensacola and Tampa, FL - Saltmarsh, Cleaveland & Gund

The CPA and consulting firm was chosen by industry peers for the third consecutive year as one of Forbes’ 2022 Top Recommended Tax and Accounting Firms in the U.S. Read more here.



Lindley Swicord Roach Anderson Curl (right)



Brackin (left) Callaway Denard Danner



Williams   Farias Edwards



Jackson Johnson Meeler



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 Katina Prokos.

Back to top of E-Bulletin