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First Bank & Trust Expands Agriculture Lending Team

August 16, 2021, 07:12 AM

First Bank & Trust Company hired Austin Phipps as a new Vice President . Phipps will join both the agriculture and commercial lending divisions of the bank. While Phipps's office will be based in Abingdon, he hails from Grayson County, Virginia and his service area will expand into North Carolina.

As a native of Southwest Virginia, Phipps is passionate about the success of agriculture in the region and wants to help better equip farmers throughout Southwest Virginia and Western North Carolina by meeting their financial needs. Phipps said, "Our region deserves the very best in financial support and in collaboration with First Bank & Trust, that is exactly what I am going to offer. It's a privilege to work for a bank of this stature and be a part of its vision moving forward. I'm grateful for the opportunity."

Senior Vice President and Agriculture Lending Division Supervisor, Keith Phillips, said, "Our team has long recognized Western North Carolina as a part of our region's agricultural footprint. Adding Austin to our team is going to allow us to better serve farmers in Watauga, Ashe and Avery Counties."

Phipps has spent the last decade as a commercial lending officer for Skyline National Bank. His passion for agriculture is what ultimately led him to join the First Bank & Trust team, citing the bank's continuing investment in the success of the region's farmers.

Before beginning his career in banking, Phipps received his bachelor's degree from Radford University. He is currently attending the Virginia Bankers Association's School of Bank Management. Phipps is very involved in his community, attending Mountain View Baptist Church with his wife, Carlie, and their two daughters. Phipps is currently a board member for the Virginia Workforce Development Authority and has previously served on the advisory board for the Grayson County Sheriff's Department and the Grayson Carrol Virginia Tech Extension Agency.

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