Appointment Underscores FCB’s Strong Commitment to Memphis as Renovated Crescent Center Office Readies Summer Opening.
JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI – June 16, 2021 – Curt Gabardi, President and CEO of First Commercial Bank (firstcommercialbk.com) announced that respected Memphis area community leader and former bank executive Kenneth W. Plunk has been named chairman of First Commercial’s Memphis advisory board. “In this important advisory role Ken will provide an invaluable leadership perspective and a wealth of banking insight. His understanding of the Memphis market and beyond is unmatched and his financial services background is remarkable,” Gabardi said.
Mr. Plunk retired from Union Planters Corporation (Now Regions Financial Corporation) March 31, 2004. He joined Union Planters in July, 1987 as president of the Community Bank Group. In March, 1992 he was elected president and director of Union Planters Bank, Memphis and was elected chairman of the bank in October, 1996. He was subsequently named regional executive over the Midwest Region, which included oversight of the Union Planters banks in Missouri, Iowa, Kentucky, Illinois and Indiana. He was then named regional executive over the Union Planters banks in Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama and finally, in preparation for retirement, was named chief administrative officer of the Central Banking Group which included the Union Planters banks in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky and Alabama.
Prior to joining Union Planters, Plunk was a principal in the former Borod & Huggins law firm which was based in Memphis with offices in Washington, D.C. Prior to joining Borod & Huggins, he was executive vice-president and manager of the Corporate Banking Group of one of Tennessee’s largest banking firms.
Plunk is a graduate of the University of Memphis, The Stonier Graduate School of Banking, the Tennessee Executive Development Program, the Stanford Executive Program, and is a certified public accountant.
As an active community leader, Plunk has served as a board member of the Foundation of the Library, the Memphis Development Foundation (Orpheum Theatre), the Memphis Museum System, the Presbytery of Memphis New Church Development Committee, the Crescent Club, the Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association, United Way of Greater Memphis and the Business Advisory Board of Crichton College. He was chairman of the MidSouth School of Banking (now Barrett School of Banking), secretary of the Health, Education & Housing Facility Board of Shelby County, chairman of the Memphis Area Chamber of Commerce, committee chairman of the Ducks Unlimited Great Outdoors Festival, chairman of the Tennessee Bankers Association, chairman of Agricenter International and chairman of the Shelby County Agricenter Commission where he currently serves on the advisory board. Plunk was an organizer and director of the former Black River BancVenture, Inc. which was a bank holding company that specialized in investing in community bank stocks. The Tennessee Bankers Association inducted him into their Leaders in Banking Excellence program in September 2007. He previously served on the board of Alpha Chemical Corporation, headquartered near Collierville, Tennessee.
Plunk was named chairman of the Tennessee advisory board of Metropolitan Bank in October 2007, where Gabardi was founder and CEO, and continued in that role following Metropolitan’s merger with Renasant Bank in 2017.
Plunk stated, “Based on my excellent working relationship with Curt going back 30 years or more, I could not turn down this opportunity to collaborate with him once again as he leads First Commercial to new heights.” Plunk stepped down as chairman of the Renasant advisory board in early June to take the helm of First Commercial’s Memphis advisory board.
Plunk is married to the former Patricia Ann Warf. They happily reside at The Village at Germantown Retirement Community. They have one daughter, Lori Plunk French and two grandsons, Austin and Carson. He and his wife were members of Evergreen Presbyterian Church where he has served on the board of deacons. They are currently members of Germantown Presbyterian Church. Since retirement Plunk enjoys family, hunting, fishing and spending time on their farm in Mississippi.
In related Memphis market news, Gabardi confirmed First Commercial Bank’s newly renovated office on the first floor of the prestigious Crescent Center in East Memphis expects to be open for business in late June to mid-July. In just over a year, First Commercial's talent driven growth strategy has led to total assets increasing 50% to just over $630 million.
About First Commercial Bank
First Commercial Bank, headquartered in Jackson, Mississippi and owned by the privately held holding company, First Commercial Bancshares, Inc., is Mississippi’s first and foremost bank for businesses and professionals, having pioneered this uniquely focused banking model in the state. First Commercial opened its doors October 12, 2000. Twenty years later First Commercial continues to honor its original vision by peeling away the layers of business bureaucracy, and redefining the relationship between bankers and clients. The Bank is aggressively expanding its talent-driven team, cementing its position as a bellwether of superior service and client support. Now, more than ever, First Commercial Bank is focused on delivering a client-centric culture, where business is personal.