SIB breaks ground on Florala branch

Published 2:05 am Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Southern Independent Bank held a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday for its new branch facility in Florala.

The bank’s official address is 23167 Fifth Avenue, more commonly known as the corner of Ala. Hwy. 55 and U.S. 331.

A modular unit has been delivered to the location, and SIB plans to open for business in Florala in April. The modular office, measuring 28 by 76 feet, will feature a comfortable lobby along with a drive up banking lane and a drive up ATM lane.

“We believe our customers in Florala will enjoy the convenience of a drive up ATM for their 24-hour banking needs,” said Micah Garner, president and chief executive officer of Southern Independent Bank.

Since its founding, SIB has had two Florala natives on its board, Charles Smith and Wesley Laird. Both were on hand for the groundbreaking Tuesday.

“These two gentlemen have long supported our intent and goal to expand into Florala,” Garner said. “I’m pleased we are now nearing that objective.”

Current SIB employees Rhonda Geohagan and Dawn Reeves will be among the Florala team members, and will be joined by three other employees to provide comprehensive banking services to individuals and business owners in the Florala area, Garner said.

Florala Mayor Terry Holley also was on hand for the groundbreaking.

“This is something we’ve needed for a long time,” Holley said. “Banks create commerce, and this will be good for our community.”

Garner said the bank was founded with a commitment to community banking.

“That means responsive, personal service, active corporate citizenship and the best in relationship-based, solutions-driven banking,” he said. “By virtually any standard, our growth reflects our success in delivering on those principles.

“That’s the brand of banking we will be introducing to Florala in the coming weeks,’ he continued. “We will work diligently to help improve the quality of life we share in the community.”

Founded in December, 2006, Southern Independent Bank manages nearly $230 million in its two existing locations.  It currently has locations in Andalusia and Opp. The bank has earned five-star status by Bauer Financial, placing it squarely among the strongest, most secure banks in the United States.