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Monk to head First National Bank

John Monk, who was with First Port City Bank for 13 years from 1993 to 2006, is returning to Bainbridge to take the helm of a local bank.

On Monday, Monk was elected chief executive officer of First National Bank of Decatur County. He will officially begin on Thursday.

Monk replaces Tracy Dixon, who is retiring. The announcement was made to its employees late Monday afternoon.

Monk, who has 33 years of banking experience, said he’s optimistic with the future of First National and categorized it as a very healthy institution.

“I would like to see it grow and become the dominant bank in Bainbridge and Decatur County,” Monk said Tuesday.

First National Bank of Decatur County opened its doors on April 4, 2004. It has grown to have $100 million in assets.

Dixon, who has been in the banking industry for 45 years, including the last 24 in Bainbridge, said Monk’s experience and knowledge will be a benefit.

“We’re fortunate to have someone of John’s caliber. I believe he and Wayne Sirmons, our president, will continue to grow the bank and provide our community with the best in banking services,” Dixon said in a statement.

Monk said the banking industry as a whole is a lot different from when he was president of First Port City Bank, and that the current recession has had a tremendous impact in community banking.

“I think bankers are more conservative than they used to be,” Monk said, noting that that’s a positive change in the banking industry.

Monk has been president and chief executive officer with Community Capital Bancshares Inc. of Albany, and its subsidiaries, Albany Bank and Trust and AB&T National Bank since August 2006, where he has commuted daily from Bainbridge.

A graduate of Stetson University in DeLand, Fla., and Stonier Graduate School of Banking, Monk and his wife, Marian, have a daughter, Jessica, who is a sophomore at the University of Georgia.