LaRoe founded Orlando-based First GREEN Bank
Washington, D.C. (Oct. 1, 2018)—The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) today announced Ken LaRoe, founder and chairman of First GREEN Bank in Orlando, Fla., as its 2018 National Community Banker of the Year. This annual ICBA award recognizes the exceptional work and commitment of individual community bank employees and their dedication to local communities.
“We are proud to honor Ken LaRoe, an exceptional leader and visionary, as ICBA’s 2018 Community Banker of the Year,” ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey said. “Ken’s passion and commitment to his community is exemplified by his adherence to value-based business practices and conscientious civic service. He has earned the respect and admiration of his colleagues and serves as a shining example of community banking at its finest.”
A committed environmentalist, LaRoe founded the bank in 2009 with a mission to promote business that is financially, environmentally and socially responsible. “Ken passionately prioritizes these three pillars over profits,” said Jaclyn Bertrand who nominated LaRoe for the award. “Not only that, but his bank serves as a role model to other businesses in the community through its volunteer work, community donations and eco-friendly initiatives.”
Beyond his environmentalist activities and priorities, LaRoe and his wife, Cindy, also started the Art of Medicine Foundation in Orlando to benefit people suffering from traumatic brain injuries. The organization has raised more than $700,000 to fund research. LaRoe was recently selected by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer to chair the Green Works Orlando Task Force. He is also a founding member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values North American Chapter.
LaRoe’s philosophy of giving back is also conveyed through his staff’s commitment to local volunteer efforts. Together, they donate more than 3,500 volunteer hours annually.
In addition to LaRoe being named ICBA’s national Community Banker of the Year, ICBA named three regional winners. This year’s regional award recipients are:
- East: Scott McComb, chairman, president and CEO, Heartland Bank, Whitehall, Ohio
- Central: Josh Rowland, CEO and vice chairman, Lead Bank, Kansas City, Mo.
- West: Stanley Wilmoth, president and CEO, Heritage Bank of Nevada, Reno, Nev.
LaRoe and the regional winners will be recognized at the 2019 ICBA Community Banking LIVE® national convention in Nashville, Tenn. The winners will also be featured in the December issue of Independent Banker®, ICBA’s award-winning monthly publication and the number-one source of community banking news for ICBA members.
This is the fifth annual contest the association has held for the Community Banker of the Year award. SHAZAM is the sponsor. Every year, ICBA seeks nominations from community bankers, customers and community leaders to identify the most passionate, innovative and savvy community bankers for this prestigious award.
To learn more about community banks, visit www.icba.org.
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for nearly 5,700 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at www.icba.org.