By STEVEN NALLEY
Another veteran banker from the Golden Triangle area has joined Renasant Bank.
E. Robinson McGraw, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Renasant, announced Tuesday Columbus banking veteran Bobby Harper has become the senior vice president and business development officer for the bank’s Columbus office.
Scott Cochran, Mississippi Division president with Renasant, said Harper makes an exciting addition to an already strong staff of bankers and lenders for the bank in Columbus.
“We are committed to being the financial services provider of choice in the markets we serve,” Cochran said, “and Bobby provides us with tremendous experience in business development and relationship-style banking as we continue to grow our market share in the thriving Golden Triangle region of Columbus, Starkville and West Point.”
The addition of Harper to Renasant’s local ranks comes less than a month after Renasant announced plans for a new bank in Starkville, with veteran Starkville banker Tommy Tomlinson spearheading the effort as Renasant’s new Starkville Division President. Harper said his own entry into Renasant came after he had been retired for eight months, but talking to Renasant renewed his interest in returning to work.
“I knew some people who had joined the bank recently,” Harper said, “and I was interested in the prospect of helping them grow their market share in this area.”
Harper served for more than 40 years as an executive banker in the Golden Triangle before retiring and joining Renasant. He received his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Delta State University and attended the Graduate School of Banking at LSU.
Bill West, president of Renasant’s Columbus division, said Harper’s experience and abilities will benefit present and future clients.
“Bobby is a great fit for our community oriented bank, where decisions are made on the local level,” West said. “You get the products of a big bank with the service of a local community bank, and relationships are the foundation for success.”
Harper contributes to the Golden Triangle Community through serving as a trustee of the Franks Phillips YMCA, as a Rotarian and Paul Harris Fellow, and as a board member of the Golden Triangle Regional Airport. He is also past president of the Columbus Air Force Base Community Council, and he has received the Mississippi University for Women Medal of Excellence for 2005 and the Exchange Club’s Book of Golden Deeds Award.
Harper and his wife, Jo, have a son, Lane, a daughter, Neely Hudnall, and three grandchildren. They are members of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, where Harper has served as a junior and senior warden.