FLORENCE, Ala.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Shoals-based First Southern Bank, a leader in community banking, has agreed to be acquired, pending regulatory approval and shareholder approval, by a group of local business leaders with long-term ties to the Shoals community. The proposed transaction has been unanimously approved by the board of directors of First Southern Bank and its parent bank holding company, First Southern Bancshares, Inc. Charles and Joel Anderson, Chester McKinney Jr., Todd Ouellette and George Pillow Jr., are uniting to enable First Southern Bank to capitalize on the tremendous growth and opportunities that are present in the Shoals and North Alabama. Jack Johnson, current president and CEO, will be retiring but will remain as a consultant to the bank as it charts its path forward. Dennis Morgan, currently executive vice president and senior lending officer, will become president and chief executive officer.
“On behalf of our board of directors, I want to thank our shareholders and our loyal customers for the support they have given First Southern Bank over the years,” said chairman Acker Rogers. “We are proud of being a locally-owned community bank that has developed close, personal relationships with our customers, while offering the best financial products and services available. This purchase is a very positive development for the bank and I believe that the new ownership will lead First Southern to even greater success in the future.”
“Today’s announcement is an important milestone in the history of First Southern Bank, and a great day for its customers, employees and community,” added president and CEO Jack Johnson. “The bank will continue to serve its customers without disruption; our employees and management team remain intact. After forty years as a local banker, I am retiring with the comfort of knowing that First Southern is in excellent and experienced hands under the leadership of Dennis Morgan and Rod Schlosser.”
“It is so fortunate that these outstanding community leaders and their families have agreed to make an investment in our business,” said Dennis Morgan. “Their belief in the growth of our vibrant and expanding local economy opens an exciting new chapter for First Southern Bank.”
Rod Schlosser, executive vice president and chief financial officer, also had some comments to add. “We are gratified to have this vote of confidence in our institution and our community, and we look forward to an exciting future for our customers and employees,” he said.
First Southern Bank’s predecessor, First Federal Savings & Loan Association, was federally chartered in January of 1935, making it the oldest financial institution headquartered in the Shoals. In 1995, First Federal Savings & Loan became First Southern Bank.
First Southern anticipates this transaction will be completed during 2017, but closing is subject to a number of customary conditions which may affect the timing, including receipt of regulatory approvals and approval by First Southern’s shareholders.
This press release does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities or a solicitation of any vote or approval. First Southern will prepare and send to its shareholders a proxy statement describing the transaction. Shareholders are urged to review the proxy statement when it becomes available.