News

Monday, 26 August 2019
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Tatum Jones has been promoted to Personal Banker at the Lebanon office, announced Kenny Beavers, Senior Vice President and Director of Retail Banking.

“Tatum has been a valued member of the Main Office team since joining the bank. Her excellent customer service skills and previous banking experience have benefited both her customers and coworkers. Tatum will do a great job serving our customers in her new position,” said Beavers.

Jones joined First Freedom Bank in July of last year as a Financial Services Representative. She has prior experience in both the retail and financial field and possesses a broad knowledge of branch operations.  As a Lebanon native, she is well established in the Wilson County Community. Jones was also previously involved with United Way.

Jones still resides in Lebanon with her son, Paxton.

First Freedom Bank, headquartered in Wilson County, was established in 2006.  A full service, community bank, First Freedom Bank offers personal and commercial banking services from six locations in Wilson, Putnam and Jackson Counties, and has approximately 70 employees. First Freedom Bank has assets in excess of $460 million and is owned by more than 1,100 shareholders throughout Middle Tennessee. First Freedom Bank is member of the Better Business Bureau, an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additionally, First Freedom has earned the prestigious Five Star rating by Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating firm.

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Posted on 08/26/2019 1:53 AM by Sarah Poss
Thursday, 22 August 2019
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FFB recognized six employees for exceptional job performance and exceeding their individual goals for enhancing and broadening customer relationships. Their outstanding performance earned them the prestigious honor of Chairman’s Cup Member for the quarter. The qualifying employees were MaKayla Ramsey, Cookeville FSR, Kaitlyn Kovalchik, Cookeville FSR, Bryan Sweet, Cookeville FSR Manager, Kim Cowan, Providence FSR Manager, Susan Nichols, Algood FSR Manager, and Sara Beth Davenport, Gainesboro FSR.

Sara Beth was also recognized as the Top Performing FSR. Sara Beth is pictured above with John Lancaster, Chairman and CEO. 

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Posted on 08/22/2019 7:11 PM by Sarah Poss
Thursday, 15 August 2019
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Tori Oakley has been promoted to Personal Banker at First Freedom Bank, announced Kenny Beavers, Senior Vice President and Director of Retail Banking. Oakley will be located at the Mt. Juliet Office on Lebanon Road.

We are very please to have Tori as the newest member of the Mt. Juliet Office,” said Beavers. “Her excellent customer service skills and financial expertise will be well received by the customers and coworkers there.”

 Oakley began working with First Freedom in January 2017 as a Financial Services Representative. Prior to her employment with the bank, she worked three years in the restaurant industry.

A Lebanon native, Oakley now resides in Murfreesboro with her husband, Tyler. She volunteers with Hands on Nashville and is a member of Immanuel Baptist Church.

First Freedom Bank, headquartered in Wilson County, was established in 2006.  A full service, community bank, First Freedom Bank offers personal and commercial banking services from six locations in Wilson, Putnam and Jackson Counties, and has approximately 70 employees. First Freedom Bank has assets in excess of $460 million and is owned by more than 1,100 shareholders throughout Middle Tennessee. First Freedom Bank is member of the Better Business Bureau, an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additionally, First Freedom has earned the prestigious Five Star rating by Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating firm.

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Posted on 08/15/2019 1:28 PM by Sarah Poss
Friday, 02 August 2019
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First Freedom donated paper and headphones to Sycamore Elementary School for the upcoming school year. The items were delivered the afternoon of Sycamore’s Luau themed Back-to-School Bash.

Pictured is Ladell Medley, Vice President and Cookeville/Algood Office Manager, and Sarah Poss, Bank Officer and Marketing Specialist, presenting the donated items to Sycamore staff and students.

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Posted on 08/02/2019 7:51 AM by Sarah Poss
Monday, 29 July 2019
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Sycamore Elementary School held their annual Back to School Bash on Friday, July 26th. First Freedom hosted a booth and gave away goodie bags and other treats to students.

Pictured from left to right is Ladell Medley, Vice President and Cookeville/Algood Office Manager and MaKayla Ramsey, Cookeville FSR, at the Back to School Bash booth.

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Posted on 07/29/2019 2:44 PM by Sarah Poss
Thursday, 18 July 2019
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First Freedom sponsored a hospitality tent and had a team participate in the 19th annual Dr. Cary Harbrecht Memorial Chamber Summer Scramble on July 15th at Five Oaks Golf & Country Club. All proceeds raised will go to the Lebanon/Wilson County Chamber of Commerce.

Pictured (top) from left to right is Phillip Vance, Assistant Vice President and Relationship Manager, Nicole Frank, Mortgage Origination Officer, John Bradshaw, President/COO & CLO, and J.B. Owens, Executive Vice President and Director of Commercial Banking. This was Vance’s third year as the tournament chair.

Pictured (bottom) from left to right is Sarah Poss, Bank Officer and Marketing Specialist, Denise Bingham, Personal Banker, Tucker Worley, Relationship Specialist, and Tatum Jones, Lebanon FSR.

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Posted on 07/18/2019 2:38 PM by Sarah Poss
Friday, 28 June 2019
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First Freedom attended Twin Lake’s celebration on the Gainesboro City Square on Thursday, June 20th. Twin Lakes received national recognition as a Gig-Certified Provider, acknowledging their gigabit broadband speeds and technological innovation. They were also presented the Smart Rural Community award for building broadband networks throughout their service area.

Pictured from left to right is Ashley Bybee of Twin Lakes, Donna Elrod, Vice President and Gainesboro Office Manager, and Greg Scott, Gainesboro FSR Manager.

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Posted on 06/28/2019 1:30 PM by Sarah Poss
Friday, 21 June 2019
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First Freedom was a sponsor of Empower Me’s first annual “Stories and Strings for Dreams” event. Empower Me is a non-profit organization whose mission it is to support and empower children with disabilities and their families. They have served over 10,000 children and their families over the past twenty years. Funds from this event go toward building an Empower Me Center, a state-of-the-art facility that will meet the growing demand of special needs individuals in the community.

The event was held June 15th at the Capitol Theater and hosted Lulu Roman as emcee, Kason Lester and Kayley Hill as music, and special guests Ricky Cook and Linda Davis.

Pictured from left to right is Kason Lester, Kaitlin Wattenbarger, Providence Officer Manager, Natalie Stark, Assistant Vice President and Mt. Juliet Office Manager, Shelia Ferrell, First Vice President and Managerial Lender, Nicole Frank, Mortgage Origination Officer, Aylan Baines, Relationship Specialist, Tucker Worley, Relationship Specialist, Maliea Oakley, Senior Vice President and Director of Human Resources, and Michelle Hill, Director of Empower Me.

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Posted on 06/21/2019 4:46 PM by Sarah Poss
Wednesday, 12 June 2019
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First Freedom Bank sponsored a table at the annual Mt. Juliet Senior Activity Center gala, held at Victory Baptist Church on June 7th. The night’s theme was “Bridging the Generations,” and included the Mt. Juliet High School Choir department as entertainment. There was a live auction held after dinner. The proceeds from the event go toward the Mt. Juliet Senior Activity Center.

Pictured from left to right is Kelly Ferrell, Lebanon Senior Personal Banker and Team Leader, Sarah Poss, Providence Personal Banker and Marketing Officer, Amanda Culbert, Providence FSR, Blair Kirkland, Providence FSR, Natalie Stark, Assistant Vice President and Mt. Juliet Office Manager, Kaitlin Wattenbarger, Providence Office Manager, and Denise Bingham, Personal Banker.

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Posted on 06/12/2019 2:56 PM by Sarah Poss
Thursday, 23 May 2019
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FFB recognized five employees this past quarter for exceptional job performance and exceeding their individual goals for enhancing and broadening customer relationships. Their outstanding performance earned them the prestigious honor of Chairman’s Cup Member for the quarter. The qualifying employees were Karen Elmore, Lebanon FSR Manager, Greg Scott, Gainesboro FSR Manager, Tatum Jones, Lebanon FSR, Keleigh Carnes, Providence FSR, Kim Cowan, Providence FSR Manager.

Tatum Jones also received the MVP Award for achieving the highest overall performance score among all FSRs. Pictured above is Tatum receiving her award from John Lancaster, Chairman and CEO. 

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Posted on 05/23/2019 2:33 PM by Kaitlin Wattenbarger
Monday, 22 April 2019
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First Freedom Announces Stock Dividend
 

Lebanon, TN – John Lancaster, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of First Freedom Bancshares, Inc, announced the Board of Directors has approved a 2.50% stock dividend payable to shareholders of record on July 12th, with a payment date of July 19th 2019.  “We are pleased to announce our seventh consecutive dividend”, stated Lancaster. 

 

First Freedom’s 2018 earnings increased 46% year-over-year fueled by strong loan and deposit growth and excellent operating efficiencies.  First quarter of 2019 earnings increased 22% compared to the same period in 2018.  “We continue to be very pleased with our financial performance and are excited to award our shareholders with yet another dividend,” stated Lancaster.  “We remain optimistic about the future of First Freedom.”
 

 First Freedom Bank, headquartered in Wilson County, was established in 2006.  A full service, community bank, First Freedom Bank offers personal and commercial banking services from six locations in Wilson, Putnam and Jackson Counties, and has approximately 70 employees. First Freedom Bank has assets in excess of $475 million and is owned by more than 1,100 shareholders throughout Middle Tennessee. First Freedom Bank is member of the Better Business Bureau, an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additionally, First Freedom has earned the prestigious Five Star rating by Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating firm.



 
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Posted on 04/22/2019 3:11 PM by Kaitlin Wattenbarger
Friday, 29 March 2019
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Lebanon, TN – Josh Clemmons has been promoted to First Vice President at First Freedom Bank, announced John Lancaster, Chairman and CEO. Clemmons will continue to serve as the company’s Controller.

“Josh is an outstanding individual and a significant contributor to the success we have enjoyed at First Freedom,” said Lancaster, “We rely on his technical financial expertise on a regular basis and we’re excited to see his continued growth in our company.”

With a background in public accounting, Clemmons is celebrating a decade of employment with First Freedom.  He was originally hired as an Accounting Officer before being promoted to Accounting Manager in 2012 and Controller in 2016.   

Clemmons is a summa cum laude graduate of Western Kentucky University, where he earned a B.S in Accounting.  He is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Tennessee Society of Certified Public Accountants (TSCPA).

Clemmons resides in his hometown of Lebanon with his wife, Beth, and daughters, Victoria and Lily Grace. He is a member of Immanuel Baptist Church in Lebanon where he has been involved as a deacon and Sunday School teacher.

First Freedom Bank, headquartered in Wilson County, was established in 2006.  A full service, community bank, First Freedom Bank offers personal and commercial banking services from six locations in Wilson, Putnam and Jackson Counties, and has approximately 70 employees. First Freedom Bank has assets in excess of $460 million and is owned by more than 1,100 shareholders throughout Middle Tennessee. First Freedom Bank is member of the Better Business Bureau, an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additionally, First Freedom has earned the prestigious Five Star rating by Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating firm.

 

 

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Posted on 03/29/2019 12:26 PM by Kaitlin Wattenbarger
Friday, 29 March 2019
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Mt. Juliet, TN – Keleigh Carnes has been promoted to Personal Banker at the Providence office, announced Kenny Beavers, Senior Vice President and Director of Retail Banking. Carnes previously served as a Financial Services Representative Manager.

“Keleigh has accomplished a lot since joining our bank, making great strides in her overall banking knowledge, delivering excellent customer service and really embracing the First Freedom culture for delivering the right financial products and services to meet or exceed customer expectations,” said Beavers.

Before joining First Freedom in August of 2016, Carnes was employed in the restaurant industry. She is a graduate of Wilson Central High School.

Carnes is a native of Hendersonville, Tennessee. She currently resides in Mt. Juliet.

First Freedom Bank, headquartered in Wilson County, was established in 2006.  A full service, community bank, First Freedom Bank offers personal and commercial banking services from six locations in Wilson, Putnam and Jackson Counties, and has approximately 70 employees. First Freedom Bank has assets in excess of $460 million and is owned by more than 1,100 shareholders throughout Middle Tennessee. First Freedom Bank is member of the Better Business Bureau, an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additionally, First Freedom has earned the prestigious Five Star rating by Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating firm.

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Posted on 03/29/2019 12:14 PM by Kaitlin Wattenbarger
Friday, 15 March 2019
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First Freedom sponsors FFA Legislative Breakfast; Tours State Capitol with Representative Clark Boyd.  Pictured from left to right: J.B. Owens, Executive Vice President and Director of Commercial Banking, John Bradshaw, President/COO and CLO, Shelia Ferrell, First Vice President, John Lancaster, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Representative Clark Boyd, and Phillip Vance, Assistant Vice President and Relationship Manager.

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Posted on 03/15/2019 12:09 PM by Kaitlin Wattenbarger
Friday, 22 February 2019
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Several First Freedom management members attended the Annual Lebanon Wilson County Chamber of Commerce Awards Celebration & Banquet to support JB Owens, Executive Vice President of the Bank, who was recognized at the event for leading the Lebanon Wilson County Chamber of Commerce as its Board Chairman in 2018. Owens has served on the Chamber’s Board for 4 years and will continue to serve on the Chamber’s Board for 2 additional years. Those in attendance from the Bank are shown here as follows from left to right: John Bradshaw – President, Maliea Oakley – Senior Vice President, Ken Howell – Chairman Emeritus, Nicole Frank – Mortgage Origination Officer, Shelia Ferrell – First Vice President, Phillip Vance – Assistant Vice President, JB Owens – Executive Vice President, John Lancaster – Chief Executive Officer, Josh Clemmons – First Vice President, Kenny Beavers – Senior Vice President, and Mike Wiggington – Executive Vice President.

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Posted on 02/22/2019 8:43 AM by Kaitlin Wattenbarger
Monday, 28 January 2019
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First Freedom sponsored a table at the annual Mt. Juliet Chamber Choice Awards banquet, held at Tucker’s Gap on January 24th.

This event is held in order to recognize notable individuals in the business community.

Pictured from left to right is J.B Owens, Executive Vice President and Director of Commercial Banking, John Bradshaw, President/COO and CLO, John Lancaster, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Tucker Worley, Relationship Specialist, Natalie Stark, Assistant Vice President and Mt. Juliet Office Manager, Nicole Frank, Mortgage Origination Officer, Kenny Beavers, Senior Vice President and Director of Retail Banking, and Phillip Vance, Assistant Vice President and Relationship Manager.

 

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Posted on 01/28/2019 9:37 AM by Sarah Poss
Tuesday, 18 December 2018
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First Freedom was a sponsor of the fourth annual Christmas Breakfast and Appreciation Program for all leaders of the Wilson County first responders.

The event was hosted by Rehab 23 and took place at the Lebanon Country Club on December 12th. This year’s guest speaker was Chief Buck Dozier (retired) of the Nashville Fire Department and current President of Box 55.

Pictured: front row, from left to right is Chief Lance Howell, Wilson County Sheriff and Rehab 23 Board Member, Bob Pergler, Operations Officer, Rehab 23, Scott Lorden, President, Rehab 23, Jennifer Porth, General Counsel, Rehab 23, Linn Yeager, Vice President, Rehab 23. Back row, from left to right is Kenny Beavers, First Freedom Senior Vice President and Director of Retail Banking, Natalie Stark, First Freedom Assistant Vice President and Providence Office Manager, and Wayne Hudspath, Board Member, Rehab 23. All Rehab 23 members pictured are also on the Board of Directors for the organization.

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Posted on 12/18/2018 3:57 PM by Sarah Poss
Wednesday, 12 December 2018
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Natalie Stark has joined First Freedom Bank as the Providence Office Manager, announced John Lancaster, Chairman and CEO.

Stark’s considerable experience in the banking world makes her a perfect fit for First Freedom Bank. After earning her BA in Marketing/Management from Marietta College in 1987, she began her 26-year career with Fifth Third Bank where she would become a Banking Center Manager and later a Senior Mortgage Loan Officer.  She was a member of the bank’s Presidents Circle for her outstanding achievements and served as a mentor to new hire mortgage loan officers.      

“We are very pleased to be associated with Natalie Stark,” said Lancaster, “her depth of banking and mortgage knowledge will be of great assistance to our customers and employees.”  

A native of Pomeroy, Ohio, Stark moved to Columbus, Ohio after completing college and lived there until relocating to Tennessee in 2017. She currently resides in Old Hickory with her husband, Ken. They have one daughter, Alexandra.

First Freedom Bank, headquartered in Wilson County, was established in 2006.  A full service, community bank, First Freedom Bank offers personal and commercial banking services from six locations in Wilson, Putnam and Jackson Counties, and has approximately 70 employees. First Freedom Bank has assets in excess of $460 million and is owned by more than 1,100 shareholders throughout Middle Tennessee. First Freedom Bank is member of the Better Business Bureau, an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additionally, First Freedom has earned the prestigious Five Star rating by Bauer Financial, the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating firm.

 

 

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Posted on 12/12/2018 12:40 PM by Sarah Poss
Friday, 07 December 2018
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First Freedom’s Ladell Medley, Vice President and Cookeville-Algood Office Manager, participated in Sycamore Elementary School’s annual Great Shake Event. Attended by nearly sixty fourth-graders, this event strives to foster professional communication skills. The students introduce themselves, shake hands and have brief conversations with their guests.

Pictured is Ladell Medley with other Great Shake attendees. 

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Posted on 12/07/2018 2:20 PM by Sarah Poss
Tuesday, 04 December 2018
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First Freedom organized a food drive for its second year in a row. There was 451 pounds of food collected and donated to local organizations. 
Pictured from left to right is Keleigh Carnes, Providence FSR Manager, and Kaitlin Wattenbarger, Providence Personal Banker, posing with some of their office’s collected food. 

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Posted on 12/04/2018 4:31 PM by Sarah Poss
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