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Bank Hires Veteran Banker Jimmy Williamson

First Landmark Bank President Terry DeWitt announces the hiring of veteran banker Jimmy Williamson as Senior Vice President with responsibilities in commercial lending and business development. In his announcement, Mr. DeWitt stated, “First Landmark is fortunate to bring on board a well-respected, experienced lender that has a history in the Marietta and Cobb communities. We are in the business of helping local companies and individuals succeed, and Jimmy shares that philosophy and possesses the experience to expertly consult with his clients.”

Mr. Williamson has been in the financial industry for over 25 years and has been involved in commercial lending since 1993, with responsibilities increasing to senior level lending beginning in 1998 when he joined Marietta-based Southern National Bank (now United Community). He comes to First Landmark from the Johns Creek Office of Southcrest Bank.

Additionally, his background includes extensive credit experience gained at Barnett Bank (now Bank of America) from 1984-1992. At First Landmark Bank, he will join the commercial lending department headed by EVP/Chief Lending officer Terri Bunten Guthrie.

Mr. Williamson, a 1980 graduate of the University of Georgia with a Major in Finance, holds an M.B.A. from Georgia State University, completed in 1982 with a Major in Finance. During his career, he has instructed classes in the Atlanta area through the American Institute of Banking and Omega Commercial Lending studies.

Prior to relocating professionally to the Johns Creek area in 2008, Mr. Williamson was an active member of Marietta Kiwanis, local business associations, the Cobb Chamber of Commerce and the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association. Mr. Williamson is a resident of East Cobb.

Terri Bunten Guthrie Elected to Board

(Marietta, GA) – On Wednesday, August 17, 2011, the Board of Directors of First Landmark Bank elected Terri Bunten Guthrie as a member of the Board of Directors.

As Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer, Ms. Guthrie serves with Bank Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ron Francis, President and Chief Operating Officer Terry DeWitt and Chairman of the Board John Moore to comprise the Executive Management of First Landmark Bank. Her responsibilities included directing the bank’s commercial lending, credit and business development efforts.

Previously Ms. Guthrie was Senior Vice President and Community Executive for Bank of North Georgia in Cobb County and Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer with Security Exchange Bank, also in Cobb.  A native of Arkansas, she is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock where she received Bachelor of Arts degrees in Psychology and Criminal Justice.

Ms. Guthrie is an active member of many non-profit organizations including serving on the Board of Directors for the Center for Family Resources and the YWCA of Northwest Georgia, where she is also the Chair for the Academy of Women Leaders governing board.  In addition to these, she has been an active advocate, fundraiser and volunteer in various community special projects including the American Heart Association, United Arts of Cobb, and the American Cancer Society.  Ms. Guthrie is also a member of the Marietta Kiwanis Club and served as its president in 2005-2006.

BANK NAMES NEW PRESIDENT/COO

(Marietta, GA) – On Wednesday, August 17, 2011, the Board of Directors of First Landmark Bank elected Terrence Y. DeWitt to the position of President and Chief Operating Officer and a member of the Board of Directors and, simultaneously, elected Ronald H. Francis to the position of Vice Chairman of the Board and continuing as Chief Executive Officer.

Local attorney John H. Moore, who serves as the bank’s Chairman of the Board, stated, “In planning First Landmark Bank, Ron Francis and I discussed the timeline for when he would devote his time to the Bank’s strategic direction and business development and less time to the day-to-day operations.   Effective September 1, 2011, Terry DeWitt, who has served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of First Landmark Bank since its 2008 inception, will assume the responsibilities of President and COO.”

Chairman Moore continued, “We are fortunate to already have within the Bank someone who can seamlessly step into the position of President.  ­­Terry has played a key role in the Bank’s success to this point, and the Board enthusiastically supports his ability to continue the momentum of the Bank’s growth.”

Mr. DeWitt serves with Mr. Francis, bank Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer Terri Bunten Guthrie and Chairman Moore to comprise the Executive Management of First Landmark Bank.  His responsibilities have included financial management and reporting, asset liability management, investment and liquidity management, risk management, and operations.  As president, he will add the responsibilities of directing senior management and overseeing all day-to-day operations.   

Previously Mr. DeWitt was with New South Federal Savings Bank in Irondale, Alabama, where he served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer and Chief Accounting Officer.  He has also served as Senior Vice President/CFO of Financial Investors of the South, Inc./Bank of Alabama in Birmingham Alabama, and as Executive Vice President and member of the Board of Directors of National Bank of Commerce (now Cadence Bank) in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  In 1998 DeWitt received the Outstanding Young Banker Award from the Alabama Bankers Association.

His experience in Cobb County includes serving as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Chattahoochee Financial Corporation and The Chattahoochee Bank in Marietta from 1986 to 1990.  He began his career with Price Waterhouse in Atlanta in 1983. 

Mr. DeWitt is a 1983 graduate of the University of Alabama where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting.  He is a member of the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association, the Marietta Country Club, and the Rotary Club of Marietta, where he was recently named a Paul Harris Fellow.  He serves on the Board of Directors and is Finance Committee Chairman of the Cobb Chamber of Commerce and the Cobb Community Collaborative.

First Landmark Bank named Top 25 Small Business

At the Cobb Chamber First Monday Breakfast held this morning at the Atlanta-Northwest Marriott, the AJC and the Chamber recognized First Landmark Bank as a Top 25 Small Business of the Year.  Accepting the award plaque for the Bank were Ron Francis, Terri Bunten and Terry DeWitt.

Also recognized were business owners from 24 other well-deserving small businesses, some of which are our clients.  We also congratulate Amber Burckhalter, owner of K-9 Coach Bed & Bark, this year’s Cobb Chamber Small Business of the Year.  Please enjoy the photos from this morning’s exciting breakfast. 

Special Alert for our Clients

SUBJECT: Fraudulent E-Mails Claiming to Be From the FDIC
Summary: E-mails that claim to be from the FDIC are reportedly in circulation.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has received numerous reports of fraudulent e-mails that have the appearance of being from the FDIC.

The e-mails appear to be sent from various “@fdic.gov” e-mail addresses, such as “subscriptions@fdic.gov,” “alert@fdic.gov,” or “accounts@fdic.gov.”

They have subject lines that read: “FDIC: Your business account” or “FDIC: About Your Business Account.”

The e-mails are addressed to “Business Customer” or “Business Owner” and state “We have important information about your bank” or “…financial institution.” They then ask recipients to “Please click here to find details.”

They conclude with, “This includes information on the acquiring bank (if applicable), how your accounts and loans are affected, and how vendors can file claims against the receivership.”

These e-mails and the link included are fraudulent and were not sent by the FDIC. Recipients should consider the intent of these e-mails as an attempt to collect personal or confidential information, or to load malicious software onto end users’ computers. Recipients should NOT access the link provided within the body of the e-mails and should NOT, under any circumstances, provide any personal financial information through this media.

Consumers should be aware that other subject lines and modifications to the e-mails may occur over time. The FDIC does not directly contact consumers in this manner nor does the FDIC request personal financial information from consumers.

For more information, visit the FDIC’s Website at www.fdic.gov/news/news/SpecialAlert/2011/index.html. To learn how to automatically receive FDIC Special Alerts through email, please visit www.fdic.gov/about/subscriptions/index.html.

First Landmark Named Top 25 Small Business

The Cobb Chamber of Commerce has named First Landmark Bank one of their Top 25 Small Businesses of the Year.  “We are excited to be included in an elite group of local small businesses,” said bank president Ron Francis, “and consider it an honor to be selected in our first year of eligibility for the award.” 

First Landmark Bank will be recognized at the Chamber’s First Monday breakfast, June 6, 2011.  For a complete list of the Chamber’s Top 25 businesses, please go to http://www.cobbchamber.org/sboy .

Approaching Your Bank for that Much Needed Loan

Despite the media coverage to the contrary, commercial banks continue to lend. In fact, lending is a large part of every commercial bank’s strategic plan. Even in the midst of this recession, credit standards have changed little and understanding how a bank approved a loan may help you navigate the credit process.

First, understand your personal borrowing philosophy and share it with your banker. Are you debt adverse? Are you more concerned about cash flow and low payments? DO you prefer to hold on to your cash and maximize borrowing? Or use you cash to pay down on purchases to minimize your interest expense? Next get to know your bank. All banks are not the same, having different expertise and varying policies. It is important to determine if your bank’s lending philosophy fits your needs.

Every business owner needs to have a relationship with their banker. A business owner should ensure their banker has some leave of expertise or understanding of their business cycle. If your first meeting with a banker is to present a signed contract with a request for a loan, the banker has no track record on which to base your request.

To determine if a loan will be approved, a bank analyzes the risks associated with the repayment of the loan. This is accomplished in three ways.

  • Repayment of the monthly principal and interest payment. Funds should come from cash flow from operations and is documented with a term called debt service coverage. This is calculated as: Company’s cash available for debt service (shorthand method is to take net income and add all non cash expenses, i.e. depreciation, and interest expense) divided by company’s total debt service (all monthly debt obligations plus the new loan payment added together and annualized). The resulting number is called a debt service coverage ratio. Most banks look for their number to be above 1.25 times, which means for every dollar of debt service the company has, it generates $1.25 in cash to make the payment.
  • Liquidation of the collateral. The type of collateral on a loan, often the item being purchased, generally dictates the terms of the repayment. Short term collateral such as inventory and accounts receivable has limited cycles and requires a short payment. A building with a useful life of 40 years allows for an amortization of between 15-25 years depending on the bank’s policy.
  • Speculative loans. If the loan proceeds must be used to generate the income necessary to adequately repay the loan, the loan would be considered a speculative loan, which has a greater amount of risk associated with it. This type of loan would require additional sources of repayment, possibly including an SBA guaranty.

It is also important that the banker receive all the necessary financial data needed to determine a company’s ability to repay the loan:

  • Three years of complete tax returns
  • All owners of 20% or more of a company will need to provide current personal financial statement and two years of complete personal tax returns
  • Listing of all business debt including monthly payments, maturity dates and interest rates
  • Resume on the company and owners

All major financial decisions for a business should be made after consulting an accountant, attorney and banker. A banker is an advisor and should be relied upon when making any decisions that will ultimately affect the cash flow of the business or ability to repay new or existing debts.

Article written by Terri Bunten, Executive Vice President/Chief Lending Officer of First Landmark Bank.

Limited Edition Greeting Cards For Sale

First Landmark Bank is pleased to present the 2010-2011  limited-edition greeting card entitled “Remembrance”, masterfully painted by local artist Nita Burge.

For the second consecutive year, First Landmark Bank commissioned an oil-on-canvas painting for the specific purpose of creating greeting cards to raise funds to benefit the community.  All proceeds from the sale of the 2010 cards will be donated to two local organizations, The Extension and Cobb Landmarks and Historical Society.  We invite you to visit the Bank at 307 N. Marietta Parkway to purchase gift-boxed sets of 12 cards, for $10 - cash or check – and view the masterful original.  The cards are available for purchase in the banking office and are available while supplies last.  

For more information, contact First Landmark Bank at 770-792-8870.

Member FDIC

First Landmark Bank Hires Beth Kornegay-Tyler

August 6, 2010 (Marietta, Ga.)— First Landmark Bank President Ron Francis announces the addition of Senior Vice President Beth Kornegay-Tyler as a commercial lender and business development officer for the Bank. In his announcement, Mr. Francis said, “First Landmark is fortunate to bring on board a well-respected, experienced lender. We are in the business to help local companies and individuals succeed, and Beth shares that philosophy and possesses the experience to expertly consult with her clients.”

Mrs. Kornegay-Tyler, who is from a banking family, received her BBA in Banking and Finance from the University of Georgia. Beth has been in the financial industry for over 30 years most recently serving as Senior Vice President, Private Banking Relationship Management with Bank of North Georgia. Her background includes extensive experience and management of all types of personal, small business and commercial relationships with a strong emphasis on professional lines of business for all types of bank products and lending services. Additionally, Beth has excellent experience in the recognition and organization of bank client relationships in serving as a liaison to wealth management, trust, and estate planning professionals for individuals and businesses.

Mrs. Kornegay-Tyler is a past Chairperson, Treasurer, and Vice President of Events for the North Buckhead Kiwanis Club and most recently for school fundraising events where Beth resides with her family in the Sandy Springs/Perimeter area. As an Atlanta native, she is very familiar with and known to many in all surrounding Municipalities to include Marietta.

First Landmark Bank opened as a state-chartered de novo bank in March 2008. The Bank recently relocated to its new corporate headquarters and banking office located at 307 North Marietta Parkway in Marietta. At this location, the Bank now offers drive-thru banking, a night depository and an ATM. The Bank offers traditional banking products and services, and additional on-line banking, cash management and remote deposit banking services. Member FDIC.

First Landmark Bank is not a publicly traded company and has approximately 250 shareholders, most of whom reside and/or work in Marietta, Cobb County and northwest Atlanta. The Bank opened in March 2008 with approximately $21 million in capital, and by June 30, 2010, the Bank had grown to over $140 million in total assets.

First Landmark Bank Holds Topping Out Ceremony for New Office Under Construction

First Landmark Bank held a Topping Out ceremony today at its new banking and corporate headquarters building currently under construction on the North Marietta Parkway at Cole Street.

As is tradition at a Topping Out ceremony, bank representatives John Moore and Ron Francis and building consultant and construction manager Joe Kassler of Level5 recognized and thanked the steel workers who are the first to reach the top of the building. All ceremony guests and construction field workers were asked to sign the ceremonial beam, which had been painted white. Following a prayer by Marietta Ward 5 City Councilman Anthony Coleman, in which he prayed for the safety of all workers to come behind to finish the building, the beam was raised to the building’s highest point where two steel workers bolted it in place.

In addition to raising the beam, a large U.S. flag was on display on the top of the building in celebration of the business and industry taking place on the construction site. Others attending the ceremony were Mayor Bill Dunaway; bank directors Steve Cole, Bob Krause, Linda McKinley and Woody Snell, advisory board chairman Chris Foster, and bank officers Terri Bunten and Terry DeWitt, among others, of First Landmark Bank; John Wise and Laurie Lane, Summer/Wise & Associates (architect); Rev. Martha Randall, Union Chapel United Methodist Church; and representatives from project contractors White Hawk, Gaskins, EWM Electrical, Midway, GEM and Quality Concrete. The planned three-story, 22,000 square foot building has an estimated completion date of March 2010.

First Landmark Bank opened in March 2008 with $21 million in capital and through June 30, 2009 grew to over $75 million in total assets. The bank’s temporary location is 48 Atlanta Street, two blocks south of the Marietta Square. Level5, a Cobb County-based financial facilities consultant and design-build firm is the general contractor for the project.