People First Bancshares Inc. Recognizes Directors, Employees and Accomplishments at Annual Meeting

April 1, 2022

People First Bancshares Inc., held its annual meeting at Peoples Bank & Trust in Pana, IL on Wednesday, March 30, 2022. During the meeting, the Board of Directors recognized new and retiring directors and the organization’s performance over the past year.

Mike Trexler recognized retiring director Jim Randolph for 25 years of dedicated service to the organization.  Trexler stated, “This recognition is in sincere appreciation of your distinguished service, guidance, devotion, and friendship.”

Acknowledging other retirements and new additions to the organization, Gardner stated, “Maintaining the best team of banking professionals is the key to the bank’s success.” Gardner congratulated Carol Furnish, Kathleen Anderson, Theresa Beal, Bonnie Miller and David Kromphardt, recent retirees, and thanked them for their service to the organization.

Gardner reported that some retiree’s positions were filled internally with promotions from within our organization, and recognized Kacie Rankin and Jennifer Mathis on their recent promotions to Assistant Vice President, Consumer Banking. Gardner also welcomed new officers and directors to the organization, recognizing Jordan Ruppert as Vice President, Business Banking in Taylorville, Lea Stuckemeyer as Assistant Vice President, Consumer Banking in Altamont, Trevor Taylor as Vice President, Business Banking in Charleston, and Josh Shallenberger who joined the company’s Board of Directors last year.

Gardner reported, “Despite the challenges of the past couple years, the organization adapted to change, and stayed focused on our long term objectives.” While noting 97% of customers surveyed rated their overall customer service experience as “good” or “excellent” last year, Gardner stated, “Our employees were able to continue to meet or exceed our customer expectations and our bank supported our communities.”

Gardner explained that the bank’s credit quality is very good and continues to improve. The bank ended the year with very low delinquent and non-performing loans. Gardner added, “In fact, nearly a third of the bank’s loan portfolio is now guaranteed by the government.” The bank continues to be an active USDA FSA Preferred Lender, a US SBA Express Lender, and a USDA RD Business Lender.

Gardner stated, “Our staff’s customer and community focus continues to drive bank performance in terms of profitability and growth.” The bank reported record financial performance including an increase in Net Income Before Tax from $7.6 million to $8.7 million. Assets increased by $82.5 million to $570.5 million; deposit volume increased by $78.6 million to $491.7 million; and loans increased by $21.7 million to $344.6 million.

Also during the meeting, David Dorn, Jr and Christopher Swing were re-elected to three-year terms as directors of the Bank and Holding Company. Other directors of the Bank and Holding Company are David Slater, Brad Davis, Michael E. Beyers, John Gardner, and Michael M. Trexler

During the organizational meeting of the Board of Directors of People First Bancshares, Inc. which followed the annual meeting, Michael M. Trexler was elected Chairman of the Board and David Slater was elected Vice Chairman of the Board. Other officers include John Gardner, President & CEO; James Adcock, Secretary; Terry Schafer, Asst. Secretary and Craig Deere, Treasurer & CFO.

Peoples Bank & Trust is a locally owned and managed, independent community bank with ten offices located in Charleston, Altamont, Tower Hill, Pana, Taylorville, Morrisonville, Springfield, Waverly, Palmyra and White Hall. Peoples Bank & Trust is a full-service bank offering outstanding customer service to consumers, small businesses, and farmers in Central Illinois. People First Bancshares, Inc., with corporate offices in Pana, Illinois, is the holding company for Peoples Bank & Trust.

For more information on Peoples Bank & Trust and their available banking services or how they can help with consumer or business lending needs, contact the bank at 888-728-1954 or visit