July 15, 2022 

Leadership Conference Crushes It

A capacity crowd of members and their families came to the GBA Leadership Conference that wrapped up Wednesday. Leadership programming is always the cornerstone of the event, with this year’s content hitting all the key areas. The first-day of the program included State Fiscal Economist Jeffrey Dorfman and his views on key economic trends, Dr. Melissa Furman of Career Potential with counsel about the importance of leaders developing emotional intelligence, and GBA’s Joe Brannen and David Oliver with an industry and advocacy update. Day two featured S&P Global’s Nathan Stovall presenting about the effects rising interest rates and inflation could have on bank performance, and a bank strategy skull session led by Jonathan Hightower of the Fenimore Kay Harrison law firm. The conference closed with a fascinating look at the life of an undercover CIA Officer, presented by former spymaster Jim Olson. The program, networking and family fellowship continue to make this one of GBA’s signature events each year. We appreciate the exhibitors who were with us, as well as all of this year’s sponsors. See photos of the conference here.



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New Leadership GBA Officers Elected, Installed

We’re excited to announce the 2022-2023 volunteers heading up the Leadership GBA Board of Directors. The new officers and board members were announced at this week’s Leadership Conference. “This is an amazing slate of bankers guiding our Leadership GBA organization for the year ahead. It’s a group that brings a lot of energy and passion for the industry to the table, and I’m excited to see what’s in store as they lead this critical part of our association,” said GBA Chairman Rhodes McLanahan, First American Bank & Trust Company, Athens.


The 2022-2023 officers are:

  • Chair: Candice Nanney, Peach State Bank and Trust, Gainesville

  • Chair Elect: Kelly Smith, First National Bank of Griffin

  • Vice Chair: Brad Sheffield, Synovus Bank, Statesboro

  • Past Chair: Jenny Wofford, Pinnacle Bank, Elberton


Nanney Smith Sheffield Wofford


New board members elected this year representing the new GBA 3-Group alignment are:

  • North Group: Taylor Watson, The Piedmont Bank, Cumming

  • Central Group: Luke Lanier, Metter Bank

  • South Group: Stephen Whittaker, First National Bank, Bainbridge

  • At Large Member: Jason Brisendine, First Bank of Pike, Molena

  • Associate Member Representative: Crystal Huffman, Fenimore Kay Harrison, Atlanta


Watson Lanier Whittaker Brisendine Huffman


Congratulations to these leaders, and thanks to them for volunteering their time and talents in service to their fellow GBA members. Thanks also to past chair Danny Minick, The Citizens Bank of Americus, and Group 5 representative Cory Burdette, Affordable Equity Partners, who completed their terms on the board at this year’s conference.


Minick Burdette


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GBA Member Profile

Roadside Assistance from Your Banker with Zach Sowell

United Bank Vice President Zach Sowell believes that being one phone call away from helping a customer in need is at the core of what it means to be a banker, so when he recently answered a call asking if the bank had a copy of a driver’s license on file, he was ready to assist. “A good customer and neighbor had lost hers while traveling out of state and needed it to rent a car upon arrival. She was stranded and so grateful we were willing to help,” Sowell said. The At Large member of the Leadership GBA Board of Directors shares some advice he received that has helped position him earn the business of all, discusses his banking career journey, reveals his greatest pet peeve (the color orange) and more in the latest GBA Member Profile.


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Slower Growth Reported by Fed

Travel and tourism continued to be strong, oil production at refineries reached record levels and ports stayed busy in the Federal Reserve’s Sixth District from mid-May through June according to the most recent Beige Book. Overall, the Fed said economic activity continued to grow, but at a slower pace. In banking, the growth of deposits and securities portfolios tapered off as most types of lending grew, said the Atlanta Fed’s analysis. Read more here.


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Offered by more than 90 Community Banks Today

GBA Endorses ServisFirst Bank’s Agent Credit Card Program

GBA is proud to recommend the agent credit card program offered by ServisFirst Bank. ServisFirst currently issues cards for more than 90 community banks in the country. 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, tfinney@servisfirstbank.com, 478.952.6497, or Karen Grahn, kgrahn@servisfirstbank.com, 205.949.0330.


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The Westin Jekyll Island

Compliance Conference

Fair Lending, Crypto and Cannabis Sessions in the Spotlight

Don’t put off registering for GBA’s Compliance Conference Oct. 19-21 at the Westin Jekyll Island. Three highlighted sessions are:

  • Fair Lending, Gary Clayton, fair lending examination specialist, FDIC

  • Crypto and Cannabis Overview, Brad Rustin, partner, Nelson Mullins

  • Washington Update, Keith Barnett, partner, and Carlin McCrory, associate, Troutman Pepper

Additional sessions to be added will cover flood compliance, HMDA, a general roundtable discussion, and an Auditor and Compliance Officer panel discussion. Get all the details and register here.


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GBA Partner Dart Appraisal Offers the Best Custom Appraisal Management Solutions

Longtime partner Dart Appraisal is the GBA’s recommended independent Appraisal Management Company (AMC) for a number of reasons. Dart employs a dual approach to appraisal management - superior client service and advanced technology. They have designed both process and infrastructure to ensure strict compliance to all state and federal regulatory requirements as well as appraiser independence. Dart also utilizes innovative technology to manage appraisal orders in real-time while centralizing all appraisal communication. This commitment to sound appraisal management through the perfect blend of people and technology is unsurpassed, and is what continues to set Dart Appraisal apart from other AMCs. Let Dart get your bank’s appraisal management process on target. Visit www.dartappraisal.com to learn more, or contact Dart’s Michael Dresden at mdresden@dartappraisal.com.


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Compliance Alliance Question of the Week


Question: Why does the bank have to get two copies of the rescission notice signed at closing for the notice of right to rescind?


Answer: Regulation Z does require that two copies of the notice of right to rescind be delivered to each consumer entitled to rescind, but it does not have an explicit requirement that the copies be signed though. The signature requirement may be set out in internal bank policy or an investor’s guidelines in order to document that the consumers received the notices, but the signatures are not explicitly required in the regulation itself. Click here to read more.


Visit www.compliancealliance.com for more helpful Q&A resources.



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New Accounts and ISO Seminars Coming Up

There are two fan-favorite seminars coming up soon at Middle Georgia University in Macon:

  • Sept. 13: Opening New Accounts Documentation and Compliance Seminar - Managing risk is the number one priority for all financial institutions, and it all starts at the new account desk. Join us Sept. 13 in Macon for the popular Opening New Accounts Documentation and Compliance Seminar with Suzie Jones of Training Resources Consulting. This full-day workshop, customized to Georgia state law, teaches essential new account opening procedures, best practices, and compliance requirements. It answers complex questions asked by customers and staff while focusing on vital information for every new account type. Learn more and register here.


  • Oct. 4: The Information Security Officer (ISO) Seminar - Tom Hinkel, vice president of compliance services and compliance guru for Safe Systems, will explore exam expectations and how the pandemic changed the ISO function in the Information Security Officer 101 Seminar: The "Why" and "How" of this Critical Position, set for Oct. 4 at Middle Georgia State University in Macon. He will cover the key responsibilities of an ISO and the ISO’s role in interacting with stakeholders. This seminar is designed for new and experienced ISO’s, but compliance officers, audit committee members, IT Steering Committee members and network administrators will benefit as well from attending this seminar. Get all the details and register here.


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Teller Training Tips, Commercial Lending and More

Here’s a sampling of upcoming webinars.

See the full slate of upcoming webinars here.


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


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 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’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.


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Alma - Pineland Bank

Brad Morris recently joined the bank's St. Marys, Camden County, banking team as a commercial lender. Read more here.


Chatsworth - First National Community Bank

Charles W. (Chuck) Thornton, Jr., CPA, has been appointed to the bank’s board of directors. Thornton also serves as executive vice president and Chief Operating Officer for the bank. Read more here.


Cordele - Colony Bank

Mandy Sudduth, controller and manager for Griffin Lumber Company, has been named to the bank’s Cordele Community Board. Read more here.


Washington, D.C. - Federal Reserve Board

The U.S. Senate Wednesday confirmed Michael Barr to the Federal Reserve Board as vice chair for supervision.



Morris Thornton Sudduth Barr



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.

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