SOURCE: SourceMedia

October 30, 2007 14:33 ET

American Banker to Honor F&M Bank President and CEO William S. Stuard With Community Banker of the Year Award

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - October 30, 2007) - The editors of American Banker will present William S. Stuard, President and CEO of F&M Bank in Clarksville, TN, with its Community Banker of the Year Award at a gala dinner on November 29 at the Pierre Hotel in New York City.

Mr. Stuard's leadership has seen the 100-year-old bank's assets grow more than 27-fold to $590 million since moving to its Clarksville headquarters in 1988. The bank recently announced that, in addition to maintaining number one market share in Montgomery County for the fourth straight year, they gained the number one spot in their Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).

"As a small community bank, F&M has set itself apart by using powerful marketing and sophisticated products that are on par with the banking goliaths," said David Longobardi, editor in chief of American Banker. "Its accomplishments in the retail arena speak to the success of these programs."

F&M has employed offbeat but powerful marketing strategies to fuel their growth. Beginning with the low-cost strategy of inviting high-net-worth women to lunch, the bank has moved on to plan exciting events that have become the hottest ticket in town. The top of the bank's new headquarters features a dance floor in order to play host.

The bank is preparing to introduce a rewards program that allows customers to earn points for all of the business that they do with the bank, one of the few banks to do so. It also has a sophisticated program that grants Goldcrest customers special benefits for maintaining high balances.

The bank's second quarter net income is up 11 percent from last year, and up 74 percent since its second quarter in 2004. It has a 13.95 percent return on equity and an efficiency ratio of 68 percent. The bank's noncurrent loans to loans is 0.37 percent and second quarter net charge offs are $23,000, down from $283,000 a year ago.

Stuard's award will be among six bestowed on industry leaders at this year's Banker of The Year Awards gala. The others include the Community Banker of the Year Awards for Builder and Advocate, Banker of the Year Award, Innovator Award, and Lifetime Achievement Awards.

Award honorees are selected by the editors of American Banker in an independent and journalistic process.

Since the inaugural Banker of the Year Awards dinner and ceremony in 2001, the gala has become the industry's premier event, attracting a "who's who" of lawmakers, regulators and leading executives.

To accompany the Awards gala, a special report, "Best in Banking 2007," showcasing the year's most important stories and trends, will be published in the November 29 edition of American Banker.

For information on attending or sponsoring the 2007 Banker of the Year Awards gala, please contact Jessica Yazujian at 212-803-6597.

About American Banker and SourceMedia, Inc.

American Banker,, is the banking and financial services industry's premier daily source of information, news, and analysis for executives at banks of all sizes. Founded in 1836, with a current readership of more than 77,000, the publication covers topics including national and global issues, mortgages, consumer finance, legislation, investment products, card and payment systems and technology.

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