First National, John Ramage

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 13, 2000

win banking awards


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Many times the contributions that a business makes to the quality of life of its community go unnoticed.

Sometimes, however, a business is recognized for those contributions, bringing awareness to and appreciation from the citizens it serves.

That recognition came to First National Bank of Brundidge June 6-9, 2001 at the seventh annual meeting of the Community Bankers Association of Alabama Leadership Conference held at Sandestin, Fla. The bank received two of the top awards presented.

First National Bank of Brundidge received the Community Spirit Award in its category and its senior vice president received the prestigious Rising Star Award.

The Community Spirit Awards are given to three banks, categorized by asset size, which are deeply involved in their communities. Each bank is judged on the the directors, officers and employees participation in projects in their community.

First National Bank of Brundidge was the winning bank in the category for banks with an asset size between $50 and $150 million.

Shelley Hildebrand, director of communications for the Community Bankers Association Alabama, said the officers of First National Bank of Brundidge are very involved in their community in organizations including the Pike County Chamber of Commerce, the Brundidge Business Association, the Brundidge Historical Society and the Pike County High School’s band and sports booster clubs.

John Ramage, senior vice president and operations officer of the First National Bank of Brundidge, was the recipient of the prestigious Rising Star Award.

The award is give annually to a young banker who is deeply committed and heavily involved in his or her bank, the community and the association, Hildebrand said.

"John Ramage serves on the finance committee of his church, the Pike County Cattlemen’s Association and the Brundidge Business Association. In fact, he was responsible for editing and publishing a travelers’ shopping and information guide called, ‘Welcome to Brundidge.’ In addition to his community service, Mr. Ramage also serves as a member of the Leadership Community Bankers (LCB) advisory board. The LCB is a division of the Community Bankers Association of Alabama."

Jimmy Ramage, CEO and president of First National Bank of Brundidge, said he is extremely proud of the recognition the bank and its employees received, especially because it comes from their peers.

"Recognition by your peers is always especially meaningful and gratifying," Ramage said. "They are the ones who know you best, and for them to recognize your efforts is something we take great satisfaction and pride in."

Ramage said First Nation Bank has set a goal to be a leader in promoting the Brundidge community.

"We work very closely with the city government, the business associations and schools in making sure our town is always selling itself to the area," he said. "We take special pride in our schools and continually look for ways to make a positive difference in our community through service to them."

The bank adopted Pike County High School and awards a scholarship to the valedictorian

each year. The bank is in the process of developing a Bank Academy on the PCHS campus for the 2002-03 school year.

"We also are

a sponsor of "Spring Fling" for Pike County Elementary School and for "School to Work" for students and teachers," Ramage said. "We continue to aid 4-H students of trips to Washington, D.C."

The bank sponsored a Spanish speaking seminar for the Brundidge business community and also sponsors seminars for farmers, businesses and students on various subjects to help them improve their ability to have a better life through continuing education programs.

"Educating our people is one of our missions," Ramage said. "We want the people in our area to be able to make wise decisions in their professional and personal lives. We have been a leader in granting loans to our citizens to obtain better housing through CDBG grants. Our bank works every day to make the quality of life better for the people of our area of the state."