Jan. 20, 2023   

The Cofield family

Please Welcome Tripp Cofield to GBA / GBAIT Team

We’re pleased to announce that Tripp Cofield has joined the Georgia Bankers Association as president and CEO of the GBA Insurance Trust, Inc., Paragon Benefits, Inc., and GBA Retirement Services, Inc. “I’ve known Tripp for almost a decade, first when he was covering financial services and health care legislation for Rep. Rob Woodall. When Rep. Woodall retired, Tripp joined the Georgia Farm Bureau where we worked closely together on Hurricane Michael relief for our common constituencies. We continued to stay in touch after he joined the Georgia Hospital Association as we have so many issues in common with the medical community. I’ve come to appreciate Tripp as bright and engaging with a heart for service. We’re excited that he’s joining Team GBA in such significant roles,” said GBA president and CEO Joe Brannen. Tripp comes to GBA from the hospital association and will also be part of GBA’s advocacy team led by EVP Elizabeth Chandler. A Valdosta native, Tripp played two years of college baseball on scholarship before returning home to complete his undergraduate degree at Valdosta State University. After graduating, he earned his law degree specializing in taxation and financial services regulation from New England Law in Boston. He practiced law in Boston before landing on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Tripp and his wife, Jenny, a special education teacher, live in Madison with their 12-year-old daughter Pinckney and 6-year-old son, Rex. Tripp’s email is tcofield@gabankers.com and mobile number is 617.909.9530. Please join us in welcoming Tripp to the Georgia Bankers Association.


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Bankers Tapped to be Floor Leaders

We love to see member bankers in leadership roles outside of their respective banks. Congratulations to Rep. Will Wade (R-Dawsonville), River City Bank, and Sen. Mike Hodges (R-Brunswick), Ameris Bank, for being named by Gov. Kemp to be among his floor leaders for important legislation during this year’s session. Wade is one of four House members appointed, and Hodges is one of two Senators. We look forward to working with them.


Wade Hodges


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Georgia Representatives Named to U.S. House Financial Services Committee

With Republicans now in the majority for the U.S. House of Representatives, that chamber’s Financial Services Committee has new leadership and an updated committee roster. North Carolina’s Patrick McHenry (R-NC10) is the committee chairman, and he announced subcommittee chairs last week. Georgia’s members on the committee are Reps. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA11), David Scott (D-GA13) and Nikema Williams (R-GA05). All have served previously on the committee, so they’re well-versed on the key issues for members. And, GBA’s advocacy team has good relationships with the representatives and their staff members. With questions, contact Joe Brannen, 404.420.2026, Elizabeth Chandler, 404.420.2027, or Bo Brannen, 404.420.2014.


Loudermilk Scott Williams


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Healthcare Golden Eggs

It’s always good to see our members highlighting important contributors to their local economy. Peach State Bank & Trust’s President and CEO Ron Quinn penned a nice article for the Gainesville Times recently about the important roles Northeast Georgia Health System and others in the medical community play for Gainesville and the surrounding region. We also recently read the system will be applying to become designated as a Level 1 Trauma Center, the first of its kind in that part of the state. Here at the Georgia Bankers Association, we’re honored to provide health insurance coverage through the GBA Insurance Trust to the employees of banks like Peach State Bank & Trust. No one ever hopes they’ll have to use that insurance, but we looked at what the Trust spent just with Northeast Georgia Health System in 2022 for those we insure. Of the $2.3 million paid in claims, 43% was for inpatient hospital admissions, 28% was for outpatient care, 24% was for emergency room visits, 3% was for physician office visits, and 2% was for urgent care. Those are just our stats, so it's easy to see there's a significant demand for quality care being met by the local employers, the medical community and insurers. Here’s a link to read what Quinn had to say about the health and economic impacts the system and the local medical community provide its citizens.


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Budget Focus of General Assembly Work This Week

The Georgia General Assembly has been in recess this week as it held budget hearings for revisions to the 2023 fiscal year budget and developing a 2024 budget. House and Senate Committees have been set for the session. See the full House committee lists here, and the Senate committee lists here. The General Assembly is slated to go back in session Jan. 23 and we will publish our next Legislative Update the end of that week. Follow legislation we’re monitoring at our State Issues page on the gabankers.com website.


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Career Lessons from the Produce Biz and Servant Leadership with Sam McCard

Sam McCard, president at South Georgia Banking Company in Tifton, got his first job with Calhoun Produce in Turner County working on the farms and in the produce business. “That job helped me understand what responsibility means and how others depend on you when you do certain jobs,” McCard said. McCard also says he works to instill the servant leader style he learned on that very first job within the culture at South Georgia Banking Company. A South Group representative on the GBA BankPAC Board of Directors, McCard said the two pieces of advice he received early on in his career that have stuck with him are, “Be kind to people,” and, “If you are going to do a job, do it right.” McCard discusses the challenge to be a visionary leader, his focus on the future and more in the latest GBA Member Profile here.


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GBA’s Bank Record Retention Guide is Online with Over 75 Recent Changes

Featuring Bank Record Retention Quick Notes©, by Carl Pry

We're proud to offer members GBA’s Guide to Bank Record Retention, featuring Bank Record Retention Quick Notes©, by Carl Pry. It is designed to be a fast and easy-to-use reference for the most common types of customer records questions in a completely online format. Please note we do not have printed copies available for purchase. This guide is intended to help develop a simple, yet complete and understandable record retention program for your bank.


The Quick Notes© refer to federal or general industry practices in six broad topic areas: General; Deposits and Operations; Loans; Securities; Human Resources; and Tax. They also contain the available requirements of FinCEN, CFPB, OCC, NACHA, IRS, SEC, FDIC, FRB and other relevant state agencies.


Including over 75 recent changes, the current edition is streamlined to assist bankers at every level. Additions include new independent sections on both Trusts & Estates and Audit as well as numerous other updates throughout. We hope that you will find this to be a valuable resource to help your bank. Please contact GBA’s Bo Brannen at bbrannen@gabankers.com, to place an order.

Pricing (does not include sales tax)

  • One user login - $125

  • 2-5 unique user logins - $495

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Beige Book

Inflation Moderating Some, Fed Report Says

Nonlabor costs, while still high, showed positive signs that inflation may be slowing in the Southeast, according to the Federal Reserve’s latest Beige Book. “The Atlanta Fed's Business Inflation Expectations survey showed year-over-year unit cost growth decreased in December to 3.8 percent, on average, down from 4 percent in November,” said a blog post about the recent report’s findings. Economic activity grew gradually, with retailers, auto dealers and leisure travel and tourism contacts reporting brisk business. Sectors with slowing growth were commercial real estate, home sales and transportation. Read more here.


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Financial Wellness Available for GBA Retirement Services Participants

Members of the GBA Master Retirement Trust were notified last week about the roll-out of our new financial wellness tools provided by Financial Finesse. The link is live now on our 401(k) site, and we encourage Trust members to promote this service to employees and begin using these tools. Through American Trust’s partnership with Financial Finesse we are able to offer this product at no cost to our members. We believe this expansion on our platform will continue to help drive better outcomes for participants and lead to a more productive and less stressed workforce. This benefit is designed to drive financial literacy and help participants eliminate debt, save for college, lower stress and ultimately make better financial decisions. Trust members may access the tools today by visiting www.MyGBA401k.com or www.americantrust.com. Please contact Mandy Richards at 404.420.2025 with any questions or for more information on 401(k) services available through GBA Retirement Services.


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Human Trafficking Alert from FinCEN

We’re flagging for everyone an alert for banks this week from FinCEN about human trafficking. While the main focus of the alert relates to human smuggling along the U.S.-Mexico border, there’s some helpful information and red flags for all banks. We know Georgia is a significant corridor for human trafficking, and we’ve been supportive of Gov. Brian Kemp and First Lady of Georgia Marty Kemp’s focus on combating human trafficking. Access the alert here.


Related: The GBA BSA Summit Jan. 30-Feb. 2 includes a session covering human trafficking. The BSA Summit has been approved for 22.25 CAFP, CRCM credits! There’s still time to sign up and attend. Get details and register here.



 Silver Sponsors: Mauldin & Jenkins and Steve H. Powell & Company. With questions, contact Aimee Corcoran, 404.420.2035.


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Support GBA’s State BankPAC Feb. 9 at Sporting Clays Tournament!

We’re so excited to host our sixth-annual Georgia BankPAC Sporting Clays Tournament on Feb. 9 at Old Hudson Plantation in Sparta. It’s always a fun event and it’s all for a great cause; all proceeds will go to the GBA StatePAC.* GBA members are invited to bring co-workers, friends, legislators, directors and customers to join you to shoot a round of clays while supporting this important cause. Get all the details and register here. You can also show your support for the StatePAC through sponsorship; click here for details. A huge thank-you to our sponsors: Banc Card of America; Bank of Madison; BHG Financial; Cash Transactions LLC (CashTrans); Citizens Bank of Americus; CSRA Business Lending; FHLBank Atlanta; First National Bank; Great Oaks Bank; ICI Consulting; Northeast Georgia Bank; Point to Point Environmental; Steve H. Powell & Company; and United Bank. We appreciate your support! Questions? Contact GBA’s Kathy Friestad.


*The GBA StatePAC contributes only to candidates running for state-level offices 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.


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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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Are You Ready for the SECURE Act 2.0 Changes?

On Dec. 29, 2022, SECURE Act 2.0 was signed into law as part of the federal government’s massive $1.7 trillion year-end spending bill. SECURE Act 2.0 contains numerous changes (90+) affecting both IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement plans, with some changes – such as the increase in the RMD starting age to age 73 for those who turn 72 after 2022 – effective immediately.


The IRA Merry-Go-Round Seminar, Feb. 7-8 at Middle Georgia State University in Macon, will include the training you need to understand the impact SECURE Act 2.0 will have on your customers.

  • Increase in RMD starting age (73 beginning in 2023, transitioning to age 75)

  • Reduction of the 50% excess accumulation penalty for RMD failures

  • Roth contributions for SEP and SIMPLE IRA arrangements

  • Expanded opportunities for Qualified Charitable Distributions

  • Federal matching contributions for qualified savers (IRA and employer-sponsored plans)

  • Significantly increased SIMPLE IRA employer funding opportunities

  • New penalty exceptions for early distributions (including domestic abuse, terminal illness, and disaster recovery)

  • Expanded beneficiary distribution options for special needs trusts

  • Significant new/enhanced tax credits for small business plans

Get all the details and register here.


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Feb. 8-10, Savannah

Big Crowd Coming - Ops/Tech Conference

Join your peers in Savannah for The Operations and Technology Conference this year. It’s less than a month away. Click here to view the all-star agenda. Click here to register. Thanks to the GBA Operations and Technology Committee, led by its Chair Tracy NeSmithPlanters First Bank, and Vice Chair Shan VenableAltamaha Bank and Trust Company, for their work on the agenda. For more information and to register, click here. A huge thanks to this year’s silver sponsors, 5iron, Empyrean Solutions, Fiserv and Ncontracts. With questions, contact Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034.


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Feb. 23, Zoom

Fundamentals of Commercial Lending 101 Webinar

Commercial banking can be intimidating because of its complexity and the risk-oriented nature of the work. This course presented by Andy Keusal, Keusal Learning, is 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. This webinar will be held via Zoom on Thursday, Feb. 23, from 9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. The recording will be available to registered participants for one month after the live training. Click here to access the event website with everything you need to know. Here’s a message from the speaker:




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Get More Peace of Mind with a Compliance Alliance Membership in 2023

A trusted partner community bankers can rely on with resources for the entire staff, Compliance Alliance constantly monitors the needs of bankers to adapt and provide the most sought-after tools for banking compliance. Membership covers both consumer and regulatory compliance, allowing your bank to easily handle any situation that comes your way. Participating in one of their free live demos is the best way to learn about member benefits. Check out all upcoming live demo dates here, and get a guided tour of the Compliance Alliance website to introduce you to all the benefits of membership. Please contact Brittney Stacey at brittney@bankersalliance.org, or 512.776.0713.


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Extended program, additional content!

Marketing Conference and Creative Workshop, March 22-24, St. Simons

Planned by GBA’s Marketing Committee, led by Chair Anna Grant JonesPinnacle Bank, and Vice Chair Haley BarnesBankSouth Mortgage, the Marketing Conference program has two components this year – A pre-conference workshop will jumpstart the program and the traditional Marketing Conference will follow. Attendees have the option to register for both workshop and conference, conference only, or workshop only. See the detailed agenda and register here. With questions, contact Aimee Corcoran, 404.420.2035.


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Legal update session extended!

HR Professionals Institute, March 22-24, The King & Prince, St. Simons

Planned by GBA’s HR Committee led by Chair Terry KennedyExchange Bank, and Vice Chair Lance WhitleyColony Bank, this year’s conference agenda includes an extended session on the legal updates HR professionals need to manage their bank’s HR responsibilities. Back by popular demand, Jason Wilcox, partner, Moore Clarke DuVall & Rodgers, will take a deep dive into the most significant legal challenges HR professionals face. During this interactive session, Jason will provide take-home materials to help you implement HR best practices. Click here to see the full agenda and to register. With questions, contact Aimee Corcoran, 404.420.2035.


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Bank Security Conference, April 12-14, The Westin, Jekyll Island

Planned by GBA’s Security Committee, the Security Conference is the premier in-person learning experience for Georgia bank security professionals looking to sharpen their skills, share the latest intel and make essential connections to help them with their mission to protect their banks and customers. This conference is planned for bank security officers and staff at all levels as well as anyone with security responsibilities at the bank. Click here for details and to register. With questions, contact Aimee Corcoran, 404.420.2035.


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May 18-19, 2023, St. Simons

Registration is OPEN! Rural Development and Lending Conference

Registration is open for the GBA 2023 Rural Development and Lending Conference May 18-19 at the King and Prince Golf & Beach Resort, St Simons. Agenda sessions will include: a livestock update, ag regulatory update, crop insurance, peanuts and farm bill update and a cotton update. Thanks to the GBA Agricultural Committee, led by its Chair Rachel ThompsonBank of Newington, and Vice Chair Matt RushtonAB&T, for their work on the agenda. For more information and to register, click here. With questions, contact Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034.


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Georgia Banking School Testimony from 2022 Graduate of Distinction

Please plan to join a big crowd in Athens at the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education and Hotel, Sunday, April 30, through Friday, May 5, for the 2023 session of the Georgia Banking School. Here's what Ryan Martin, Savannah Market President at Truist and 2022 Georgia Banking School Graduate of Distinction, had to say about his school experience:


"Graduating from Georgia Banking School was a great honor, and the experience was an excellent chapter of my life. I had the opportunity to forge lifelong friendships with bankers from all around Georgia while learning and developing skills together. The school is a no-nonsense program focused on sharpening leadership skills, banking knowledge, and emphasizing the major role that bankers have in the overall success of the communities they serve. The Georgia Banking School is a solid investment for all since developing great bankers ultimately results in excellent communities."


Learn more about the Georgia Banking School here


With questions, contact Alison Moreau, 404.420.2034.


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GBA Annual Meeting Registration to Open for Bankers Next Week

Registration for GBA’s 2023 Annual Meeting will open exclusively to member bankers next week. The 131st-annual meeting will be June 18-20 at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, CO. Bankers, watch for an email announcement with a link to our annual meeting website and online registration. Remember, meeting registration is required before you can reserve a hotel room. Registration will be open to member bankers for a limited time before we open registration to GBA associate members. Associate members are invited and encouraged to show their support of this signature GBA event through sponsorship or exhibiting. Click here for our 2023 sponsorship and exhibit kit; complete the response form on page two to reserve your sponsorship or booth. A big thanks to these awesome associate members who’ve already confirmed their sponsorships: Presenting Sponsor: Safe Systems, Inc.; Platinum Sponsors: Fenimore Kay Harrison LLP and ServisFirst Bank; Gold Sponsors: CRS Data; First National Bankers Bank; McNair, McLemore, Middlebrooks & Co., Inc.; Profit Resources, Inc.; Steve H. Powell & Company; and Troutman Pepper; and our Silver Sponsors: Elliott Davis; FHLBank Atlanta; Holmes Shaw Agency - a member of the PointeNorth Insurance Group; Mauldin & Jenkins; Point to Point Environmental; and United Bankers’ Bank.


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Spring Seminars, Middle Georgia State University, Macon

GBA is hosting a variety of one-day seminars taught by the experts you know and trust – register today!

  • Back by popular demand, Mike Allen will present the Personal Cash Flow Seminar, March 29. Through a combination of lecture and casework, participants will learn how to calculate sources and uses of personal cash flow.

  • The Call Reporting Seminar, April 19, presented by Michael GordonMauldin & Jenkins, will equip you with practical techniques and resources to improve your overall call reporting process.

  • Learn what’s needed to prevent loan losses through the implementation of proper loan structuring and documentation techniques at the Loan Documentation Seminar, April 26, presented by Mike Allen

  • The fan favorite seminar The Information Security Officer 101 is back on April 27. IT security experts Josh Dasher and Emily StricklandSafe Systems, will take a deep dive into the “why” and “how” of the ISO's role.

With questions, contact Aimee Corcoran, 404.420.2035.


Allen Gordon Dasher Strickland


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Call Report Preparation, State of HMDA, Building an IT Strategic Plan and More

Here’s a sampling of upcoming webinars.

  • Call Report Preparation Live Streaming - 2 Day Series – Jan. 23
    Audience: Anyone responsible for preparing, reviewing, or signing a Call Report will find this program valuable. The streaming event will provide basic training for new preparers, though some basic accounting knowledge is helpful, and complete coverage of new and complex issues will benefit experienced preparers.


  • State of HMDA in 2023 – Jan. 31
    Audience: Loan officers, managers, processors, compliance and fair lending officers, auditors, counsel, and anyone else with HMDA-related responsibilities, including data collection, reporting, analysis, and disclosure.


  • Advanced TRID Compliance – Feb. 2
    Audience: This webinar is designed for consumer real estate loan officers, loan processors, and compliance and audit personnel.


Want to see the full webinar schedule? Check out our webinar calendar for a full list of upcoming webinars.


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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.


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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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, kprokos@gabankers.com, and David Oliver, doliver@gabankers.com, or if your company would like to sponsor this content, let us know. Here's our latest installment:


Atlanta - Citizens Trust Bank

Bank team members took part in a day of service on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Atlanta - Truist

Center for Employment Opportunities, the nation’s largest provider of comprehensive employment services to people returning from jail or prison, has received a $1 million grant from Truist Foundation supporting career advancement and creating economic mobility pathways for people returning from prison and jail. Read more here.


Bainbridge - First Port City Bank

For Law Enforcement Appreciation Week, bank team members delivered treats to the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office and the Donalsonville Police Department.



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GBA Newsmakers


Atlanta - Citizens Trust Bank

Bank President and CEO Cynthia Day has been appointed to the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.


Bainbridge - First Port City Bank

VP/Commercial Lender Kyle Staples recently received the Rising Star Award at the Bainbridge and Decatur County Chamber of Commerce Banquet.


Johns Creek - American Commerce Bank

Monesty, a division of American Commerce Bank, NA, recently announced the launch of its digital brand and banking platform. Read more here.


Louisville - Queensborough National Bank & Trust Company, Inc.

Brian Dart has been promoted to group vice president, market manager in the bank’s coastal market. In addition to commercial lending, Dart will oversee the bank’s branches in Statesboro and Pooler as well as the Hodgeson Memorial Drive branch in Savannah. Read more here. Michelle Wallen has been promoted to assistant vice president, director of merchant services. Read more here. Jonathan Barnes has joined the bank as a loan officer at the Tobacco Road branch in Augusta. Read more here.


Moultrie - The Former Moultrie Federal Saving Bank and Southwest Georgia Bank

Our sympathies to the family and friends of retired banker John Mathis, who recently died. Read more about Mathis here.


Rome - River City Bank

The bank this week announced the opening of its Loan Production Office at 32 Jack Heard Road, Suite 105 in Dawsonville. Read more here.


Statesboro - Renasant Bank

Amber Stewart has been promoted to business banking officer for the Statesboro commercial team. Read more here.


Atlanta - Finosec

Beth Sumner has joined the Finosec team as vice president of customer success.



Day Staples Dart Wallen


Barnes Mathis Stewart Sumner



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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