First South Bank’s board honors longtime members

Published 9:19 pm Sunday, October 2, 2016

A wealth of knowledge, coupled with decades of experience, is a sought-after feature in any industry.

First South Bank celebrated such decades-long experience on its Board of Directors, but this year, had to say goodbye to three of its long-serving members: Linley Gibbs, who served on the board for about 31 years and previously worked for Hamilton Beach Brands Inc., retired in March; Charles “Bud” Parker, who served for about 45 years, worked at Morris Insurance and now resides in New Bern, retired in June; Frederick H. Howdy, who served for about 41 years and worked as a dentist, retired about two weeks ago.

The Board of Directors oversees First South Bank’s operations, delegates responsibilities to company executives and sets company strategies, according to Chief Executive Officer and President Bruce Elder.

At a Sept. 22 meeting, the Board of Directors celebrated Parker’s, Howdy’s and Gibbs’ years of service, as Howdy’s retirement rounded out the last of them for the time being.

“It is a little bit of a challenge for the company because if you go back and add up their experience and service with the company, you get…like 116 years,” Elder said. “That is really difficult to replicate.”

To help maintain some of the institutional knowledge, First South Bank appointed newer board members well before the impending trio of retirements.

Elder mentioned Lee Chevrolet owner Steve Lee’s appointment more than three years ago, as well as Carver Machine Works President Lindsey Crisp’s and Griffin Farms owner Steve Griffin’s appointments last year.

He said the idea was to allow these newer board members to come in, get their feet wet and gain a better understanding of operations before the board lost its three longtime members.

“As I said, you’ve got 116 years of experience walking out the door. It’s a challenge, but we will meet it,” Elder said.