First South Bank Announces Hire of Experienced Banking Team; Dwayne Baker and Mary Katherine Saunders to Lead New Strategic Initiative in Williamston, NC

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First South Bank (the “Bank”), the wholly owned banking subsidiary of First South Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ : FSBK) is pleased to announce the hire of W. Dwayne Baker and Mary Katherine Saunders, both formerly with BB&T, as the Bank begins to establish a more prominent presence in the Town of Williamston, Martin County and the surrounding northeast coastal plains region of North Carolina.

Dwayne and Mary Katherine are without question the most dynamic bankers in Williamston.

The Bank will open a loan production office (LPO) in Williamston during the month of October 2015 and anticipates filing the necessary regulatory applications to establish a full service branch office prior to the end of the year. Bruce Elder, President and CEO of First South Bank, commented “Dwayne and Mary Katherine are without question the most dynamic bankers in Williamston. When a bank makes a decision to expand into new geographic areas, you dream about attracting people like Dwayne and Mary Katherine. They decided to make a change to help create something special and give back to a community that has been such an important part of their lives. Their desire and motivation mesh perfectly with the values and visions of First South Bank and we are so excited have them join the team.”

Dwayne will be the Market Executive, responsible for leading the Williamston team and developing the Bank’s presence and contributions to the communities of Martin County. Dwayne has over 30 years of banking experience and brings to First South Bank vast experience in agricultural and commercial banking. He will be instrumental in the growth and development of strategic initiatives for the Williamston team.

Mary Katherine comes to First South Bank with 15 years combined retail and commercial experience. Her client base consists of customers in the agribusiness sectors and operating companies throughout Martin County and the surrounding area. As a Commercial Relationship Manager, she will be cultivating relationships with business owners, tailoring the best financial solutions and supporting community involvement.

“Mary Katherine and I are both excited to join the First South Bank team,” said Dwayne. “We appreciate the responsibility and opportunity of introducing Williamston to First South Bank.”

Dwayne currently resides in Williamston, NC with his wife Jackie. They have a daughter, Rachel who currently attends NC State University. Dwayne is actively involved in the community and is a board member for the Martin County Committee of 100. Dwayne and Jackie attend Macedonia Christian Church.

Mary Katherine currently resides in Williamston, NC with her husband Clint and son Will. She serves as a board member of Martin Community College Foundation, NC Cotton Producers Association and Martin County Chamber of Commerce. Mary Katherine and her family attend First Christian Church.

First South Bank has been serving the citizens of eastern North Carolina since 1902 and offers a variety of financial products and services, including an equipment leasing company and securities brokerage services through an affiliation with a broker/dealer. The Bank operates through its main office headquartered in Washington, North Carolina, and has 32 branch offices located throughout central, eastern, northeastern and southeastern North Carolina.


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Amber Farley

Nikki Klapp