Start-up bank in Suffolk moves closer to reality

Published 12:00 am Monday, December 2, 2002

A new player in the local banking scene is a step closer to opening its doors after officials of Suffolk First Bank were notified last week that their bank had been approved by the state Bureau of Financial Institutions.

According to bank president Darrell Swanigan, the approval was subject to the bank being approved by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. He noted approval from those institutions is expected soon.

Formation of Suffolk First Bank was announced in December 2001. Since then, approximately 1,450 shareholders have subscribed to $10.321 million in stock, Swanigan said.

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&uot;The people of Suffolk have spoken very loudly with their pocketbooks that they want an independent bank,&uot; Swanigan said.

Swanigan noted that officials hope the bank, which will be located at 100 Bosley Ave., will open near the end of January.

&uot;We plan to open there with some very attractive hours, ATM and two drive-up teller lanes,&uot; Swanigan said. &uot;We will dedicate and concentrate our marketing efforts of operating a hometown bank where customers come first. Our slogan is ‘Customers First at Suffolk First’ and that’s what will set us apart from the larger, statewide banks.&uot;