First Southern Bank History
On June 19, 1907, The Patterson Bank was chartered and opened its doors for business in Patterson, Georgia with capital stock of $15,000. Sixty-eight years later, in 1975, the bank moved into a new building on Highway 84 in Patterson, Georgia, where it still conducts business today. A second branch office was built eleven years later, in 1986, near Waycross in Pierce County in the Bonneyman community. This office was opened to take advantage of the growing population in Waycross and to comply with the banking regulations at the time restricting branching outside the chartering county. With branching regulations changing, in May of 1998, The Patterson Bank opened its third location, expanding into Jesup, Wayne County. Finally, in the summer of 2008, the fourth location of The Patterson Bank was opened in downtown Waycross. In 2009, the Bonneyman location was closed.
In March of 2013, a recapitalization plan was completed, which brought The Patterson Bank under new ownership. Forty-one individual investors, all from the local community, came together and purchased over 98% of the outstanding shares of the Bank. Until the initial closing of the Bank’s private offering on March 29, 2013, the Bank was a wholly-owned subsidiary of Patterson Bancshares, Inc., a Georgia corporation, registered as a bank holding company. As a result of the completion of the recapitalization of the Bank, as of June 30, 2013, Patterson Bancshares, Inc. held less than 1% of the outstanding shares of the Bank. In conjunction with this new start, the Bank’s name was changed to First Southern Bank and a new Board of Directors was elected.
In February 2019, First Southern Bank raised $16 million in new Capital with the goal of expanding its branch network to Florida. With the increased Capital, FSB was able to open a branch location in the Highlands County market in August 2019 and a Manatee County location in September 2019. As of today, First Southern Bank is 5 branches strong serving Southern Georgia and West Central Florida.
First Southern Bank is proud to be a true community bank! Our mission is to serve our communities with a level of service superior to our competition. First Southern Bank has been investing in our communities since 1907 and will continue for years to come!
First and foremost, we are a community bank. We take pride in giving back to our community in time and resources. When our community is a success - we are successful.
Respect sets the tone of our culture. We believe in the importance of treating each teammate as an individual and treating every moment as one that matters. We believe great teams are built on honesty and integrity, mutual trust and accountability.
Our customers are at the center of everything we do. We form lifelong relationships with our customers based on trust, dependability and transparency. We believe that long lasting relationships are more valuable than the individual transaction.
Board of Directors and Executive Officers
Board of Directors
News & Events
December 24, 2021
First Southern Bank Announces Steve Watters as Senior Vice PresidentFt. Pierce, Florida — First Southern Bank (the “Bank”), a full-service community bank serving
Florida and Georgia announced today that Mr. Steve Watters has joined the Bank as a Senior Vice
President. Steve Watters has joined First Southern Bank with over 30 years of banking experience. Steve has
been a regional bank executive leading teams in the Treasure Coast Region for the past 20 years.
Previously with SunTrust, Harbor Community Bank and most recently with SouthState where he
served as Treasure Coast Regional Retail Executive. Steve began his banking career with a small
Community Bank in North Carolina, now going back to Community Banking with First Southern
Bank. Steve has served on numerous Non-Profit Boards in the Treasure Coast as well as developing
Mentorship Programs. Steve is a graduate of University of North Carolina at Wilmington where
he majored in Business Administration. “We are pleased to welcome Steve to First Southern Bank,” said Daniel S. Hager, Chairman and CEO. “As a seasoned market leader with valuable experience, we look forward to the insight, energy and value he will bring to the Bank in the coming years.”
About First Southern Bank:
First Southern Bank has been a leading financial services provider for consumers and small
businesses since 1907 and offers a full range of banking, lending and investment products. The
Bank offers easy-to-use online banking, 24/7 telephone banking and a mobile app for banking on
the go. First Southern Bank is a Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender and Equal Opportunity
April 20, 2021
First Southern Bank Announces Raymond Brown as Community PresidentJESUP, GA — First Southern Bank (the “Bank”), a full-service community bank serving Georgia
and Florida announced today that Mr. Raymond Brown has joined the Bank as Community
Mr. Brown grew up in Jesup, Georgia, and graduated from Georgia Southern University with a
degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Banking. Raymond has 23 years of
banking experience in the South Georgia Market. Most recently, Raymond was the Market Leader
for BB&T in Jesup, Georgia, where he received the 2020 Top 1% Performance Award and has
won the Sterling Performer Award for six consecutive years. Raymond’s vast experience in
leadership, commercial and consumer lending and business development will be a tremendous
asset for First Southern Bank. Raymond is an active member of the Wayne County community
and serves on numerous philanthropic boards. “We are pleased to welcome Raymond to First
Southern Bank,” said Daniel S. Hager, Chairman and CEO. “As a seasoned market leader with
valuable experience, we look forward to the insight, energy and value he will bring to the Bank in
the coming years.”
About First Southern Bank:
First Southern Bank has been a leading financial services provider for consumers and small
businesses since 1907 and offers a full range of banking, lending and investment products.
Headquartered in Waycross, Georgia, the Bank has five full-service branches, four ATM locations,
drive through locations, offers easy-to-use online banking, 24/7 telephone banking and a mobile
app for banking on the go. First Southern Bank is a Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender and
Equal Opportunity Employer.
February 3, 2021
Insuritas Announces Partnership With First Southern Bank
January 13, 2020 – Insuritas today announces it has partnered with First Southern Bank of Georgia to build a turnkey, full service digital insurance agency that will operate across their Southern Georgia and West Central Florida footprint. This new partnership will enable First Southern Bank to offer its customers the auto, home and business insurance products they purchase every year, while deepening customer share and building an additional source of non-interest income.
‘We are delighted to announce our partnership with First Southern,’ said Jeff Chesky, Insuritas’ Chairman & CEO. ‘As one of the nation’s preeminent community banks, we are proud to have earned the opportunity build, launch and manage a full service digitally powered insurance agency for the bank. This new agency launch will offer all of the insurance products the bank’s customers will need over their lifetime, and the agency’s products and services will be connected to the digital platforms the bank is building out to support its continued growth.’
Chesky added, ‘Through our partnership, the bank will now be able to provide their customers with simple, seamless access to more competitive options for their customers’ insurance needs, with a focus on delivering the right coverages at the right price at the right time.’
Insuritas and First Southern expect to launch the insurance agency in Q2 of 2021, building and deploying a full-service insurance offering with over 40 carrier partners in just 90 days.
For more, visit www.insuritas.com.
Insuritas’ mission is to connect people to the insurance products they need through a seamless, transparent shopping experience where carriers compete to provide them with the right coverage at the right price. The Insuritas ecosystem, deployed across a network of partners serving over 10M customers nationally, empowers financial institutions to leverage proprietary data-mining techniques and integrations with a broad array of insurance carriers to make highly personalized, digitally optimized insurance offers to their depositors, all within their brand. These strategies help further their commitment to the financial well-being of their customers, while driving a critical source of non-interest income for their institution. For more information, visit www.insuritas.com.
New Board Member - Joe Ierardi
December 22, 2020
First Southern Bank (the “Bank”) announced today that Mr. Joe Ierardi has been elected to the Board of Directors for First Southern Bank. Joe is the Chief Executive Officer for Wayne Memorial Hospital in Jesup, Georgia, an 84 bed acute care facility. Joe received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia and received his Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration from the University of Phoenix. He is an active member of the Wayne County community and volunteers in numerous philanthropic organizations. “We are pleased to welcome Joe to the First Southern Board of Directors,” said Daniel S. Hager, Chairman and CEO. “As a highly respected and seasoned executive with valuable local expertise, we look forward to the insight, energy and value he will bring to the bank in the coming years.”
We CARE About You
April 8, 2020
The #1 rule for a true community bank is 1 on 1 customer service! During this unprecedented time, we continue to make that our mission. We have proudly served the small businesses in our communities by personally guiding them thru the CaresAct loan process. We are here to help all businesses learn what they are entitled to and we personally handle each loan request. We do not refer customers to a third party. When you work with First Southern Bank - you work with one of our experienced lenders. Let us help you today!
CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program Loan Update
April 6, 2020
The First Southern Bank Team has direct access to the SBA Paycheck Protection Program loans. We are excited to say that we submitted our first loans over the weekend. We could not be prouder of our dedicated lending team for taking care of the small businesses in our community. That is what community banking is all about! We are here to help answer questions about this new program. Please click on the links contained within the CARES Act section at the top of our home page for more information about this beneficial program.
A Message From Our Chairman Regarding The Coronavirus
March 11, 2020
A message to our customers:
First Southern Bank values you as our customer and we take the safety and well-being of our customers and associates seriously. As you know, the COVID-19 virus is cause for concern and we are continually monitoring the status of this serious situation. We have activated our Pandemic Contingency Plan as a precautionary step and are following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and local public health authorities in each of our communities.
Please know that First Southern Bank has instituted the following in response to the risk caused by the virus:
1. Increased sanitation efforts in our public and private locations, including daily sanitization of all door handles, bathrooms and bank equipment.
2. Reinforcing healthy habits for our associates.
3. Keeping our online products and telephone services fully available to our customers.
4. Monitoring associates and customers that are at-risk or have special needs.
5. Using video and telephone conferencing when available to limit business-related travel.
6. Daily risk monitoring and management oversight.
7. Increased communication.
Our branches are open for business and we do not anticipate any branch closures at this time. We will keep you updated on our website and social media channels as the situation progresses. As always, you can access your accounts via our online banking, www.fsb-bank.bank or call our customer service 24-hour hotline at 1-866-452-0015. Please know, the safety of our customers and associates are the highest priority. We value your relationship and will continue to provide excellent customer service.
Thank you for choosing First Southern Bank as your bank of choice and as always, it is a pleasure to serve you!
Daniel S. Hager
Chairman and CEO
First Southern Bank Announces Its Expansion to Manatee County, Florida
November 4, 2019
WAYCROSS, GA — First Southern Bank (the “Bank”) announced today that it has opened a branch in Manatee County, Florida. The branch is located at 3103 Manatee Avenue West, Bradenton, FL 34205.
The bank is operating in a temporary location while building a permanent branch location at 1825 Manatee Avenue West in Bradenton. The new building will be completed 4th quarter of 2020.
Daniel S. Hager, Chairman and CEO of First Southern Bank, is excited to bring true community banking back to the area. Mr. Hager has over 40 years of experience in Manatee County and brings with him a seasoned management team that has worked together for over 23 years. Joining him is Michael Turner, Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer and Kelly H. Ellis, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Hager stated that "First Southern Bank will fill a much needed void in the market. Community banking has been disappearing due to bank buy-outs. We are bringing it back. First Southern is pleased to expand to the West Florida market and looks forward to bringing back true community banking to Bradenton."
Community welcomes First Southern Bank
September 29, 2019
SEBRING, FL — It seems like old times at the new community bank in Sebring. First Southern Bank held its grand opening and celebrated the occasion by hosting a Sebring Chamber of Commerce after-hours mixer on Sept. 19.
The reference to the past is interesting in that most of First Southern’s staff has worked together at other banks locally including the former Highlands Independent Bank.
Trisha Johnson worked at Highlands Independent for seven years. She left and took another job in the southern part of Highlands County. Johnson said she wanted to get closer to her home, and the opportunity with First Southern came up.
"It was like coming back home," Johnson said.
Lu Edwards said she has worked for John Shoop, the bank's president, for 30 years. Most recently, before the new bank was established, the two worked together at CenterState Bank.
"He said he was leaving, and 'I said you're not leaving me here,'" Edwards said.
"I said 'if she's not I'm not leaving,'" Shoop joked. "It's a package deal."
The others who have worked together before are Judy Lee Brown, Laura Ramirez, Brian Cosgrave, Tami Walker and David Veley. Morgan Culbertson and Donna Appel also work there.
Shoop said the response from people has been "very positive."
"People are glad we’re downtown and glad to see us back in community banking," he said. "Where you know the people, and the people know you."
The bank, which opened in August, is at 205 W. Center Ave.
Shoop said the bank might open at least two more branches in Highlands. He noted that a branch is being built in Bradenton.
"We don’t want to get real big," he said. "We want to be big enough to be sustainable and valuable to our customers, but we don't want to be too big where you forget who your customer is."
Based in Patterson, Georgia, which is in the southeast part of the state, First Southern was founded in 1907 and was called the Patterson Bank. The name was changed in 2013, according to the bank’s website. It has three locations in Georgia.
First Southern Bank Announces Its Expansion to Highlands County, Florida
June 18, 2019
WAYCROSS, GA — First Southern Bank (the “Bank”) announced today that it has submitted a branch application for the City of Sebring in Highlands County, Florida. The aniticipated branch will be located at 205 West Center Avenue, Sebring, Florida.
John Shoop, Mayor of Sebring, has been named the President of the Central Florida Region for First Southern Bank. Mr. Shoop brings with him over 40 years of banking experience in the Central Florida Market. In addition, Mr. Shoop brings with him a seasoned management team that has served the Highlands County community for over 15 years. First Southern is pleased to expand to the Central Florida market and looks forward to bringing back true community banking to Downtown Sebring.
First Southern Bank Announces $16 Million Private Placement of Common Stock
February 27, 2019
WAYCROSS, GA — First Southern Bank (the “Bank”) announced today that it successfully completed a $16.0 million private placement of common stock. The Bank issued 2,000,000 shares of common stock at $8.00 per share to institutional and accredited investors. Net proceeds from the offering are estimated to be approximately $14.8 million and will be reflected in the Bank’s first quarter financial statements.
Net proceeds from the private placement of common stock restored the Bank’s capital levels to the standards required by federal banking regulations, while providing additional capital to support future growth and for general corporate purposes.
Bill Hughes, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We are pleased with the results of the Bank’s strategic decisions made over the past year, our return to profitability and the response to our capital raise. The successful offering was a vote of confidence by the investment community showing strong support for our Bank. This new capital will allow the Bank to continue to grow organically and will support the capital needs for our future.”
The Bank engaged the investment banking firm of FIG Partners, LLC to act as its sole placement agent to assist with the common stock offering.
Bank Foreclosed Properties for Sale
Financing Available at Reasonable Rates and Terms!
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