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Lee will manage loan processing and administration throughout Southern Bancorp Bank.

LITTLE ROCK, ARK. – Southern Bancorp today announced the promotion of Ardella Lee to Director of Loan Operations, a leadership position in which she will manage loan processing and administration throughout the company. Lee has worked in banking for over 25 years and previously served as a loan operations officer.

“I want to congratulate Ardella on her well-deserved promotion,” said Southern Bancorp, Inc. CEO Darrin Williams. “She has been an asset to Southern for many years and an advocate of our mission to provide access to economic opportunity in rural and underserved communities.  Ardella has a wealth of experience in loan operations, and I am excited to see the impact she makes in this new leadership role.”

A long-time resident of Smackover, Lee joined the Southern Bancorp team in 2001. She is a graduate of Smackover High and attended South Arkansas Community College. Lee and her husband Cleveland have two children and four grandchildren.

“I enjoy working for a values-based bank like Southern and appreciate the opportunity to be a wealth builder for everyone,” said Lee. “I am honored to serve in this new role and look forward to helping people in our markets get access to the capital they need.”

About Southern Bancorp

Southern Bancorp, Inc., a bank holding company; Southern Bancorp Community Partners, a 501(c)(3) development finance and lending organization; and Southern Bancorp Bank, one of America’s largest rural development banks; were founded in 1986 by a group of business, political and philanthropic leaders who were concerned about the economic decline of rural Arkansas. All three entities are U.S. Treasury certified Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) collectively known as “Southern.” With $1.6 billion in assets, 65,000 customers and 49 locations in Arkansas and Mississippi, Southern invests in people and businesses in rural communities; empowers them to improve their lives; and helps them transform their communities. Southern is a Certified B Corp, Benefit Corporation, and proud member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values. Learn more about Southern on the web at &