When Terry Carson ends his 44-year banking career on Jan. 31, the market president for Generations Bank in Van Buren plans to spend time with his family.
“My future plans also include more time with my church, travel, healthy lifestyle and volunteer commitments,” Carson said. “Who knows, I might even start a second career.”
Carson joined First Community Bank of Crawford County on Sept. 1, 2012, as president. In 2014, the bank was purchased by Harrell Bancshares Inc. and is now a $50 million branch of Generations Bank.
“I always wanted to get my banking career in Crawford County,” Carson said. “My wife Janie and I had moved back to Alma in 2010 after the deaths of our mothers to be near our children and grandchildren after 17 years in Clarksville and Fort Smith.”
Carson will be honored at a retirement party from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday at Generations Bank, 2925 Alma Highway, Suite A, in Van Buren.
A native of Ozark, Carson is a 1969 graduate of Ozark High School and a 1973 graduate of the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. His banking career began in 1974 as a state bank examiner, a position he served for four years.
The remaining 40 years has been spent at banks in Western Arkansas: 20 years in Crawford County and 20 years in Johnson, Sebastian, Franklin and Logan counties.
“During my career, I have served as president for 16 years, executive vice president for eight years and 16 years as a vice president,” Carson said.
In 1978, he joined Commercial Bank at Alma where he attained the position of president. The bank grew from $13 million in assets to $39 million.
In 1992, Carson accepted a position with Arkansas State Bank in Clarksville with $100 million in assets as executive vice president and credit administrator.
“The bank grew to $160 million in assets and seven branches in Johnson, Franklin and Logan counties,” he said. “I was promoted in 1995 to president and CEO when the bank was purchased by the largest multi-bank holding company in Arkansas, First Commercial Corp. with $5 billion in assets.
In 1998, the bank holding company was purchased by Regions Financial Corp. with $37 billion in assets and Carson became the market president, a position he held until the end of 2000.
“I made a major career move when we relocated to Fort Smith in 2001 to be near our aging mothers who needed our care,” he said. “I made the decision I would finish my banking career working in Western Arkansas.”
During the years 2001-03, Carson was with Farmers Bank in Greenwood as executive vice president. He was a member of the board of directors and self-employed as a bank consultant serving as credit administrator in two Eastern Arkansas bank that were under regulatory orders.
In 2004, he joined Benefit Bank in Fort Smith with $150 million in assets as vice president and commercial loan relationship manager.
“I managed all of the Crawford County relationships in addition to my other customers,” Carson said.
Carson has been married to Jane Organ Carson for 33 years. They have a son and daughter-in-law, Travis and Casey Collyar; and three grandchildren, Jordyn, 19, and twins Cason and Nora, 5. The Carsons are members of First Baptist Church in Van Buren.
Carson is a member and past president of the Van Buren Lions Club, past board member of the Van Buren Chamber of Commerce, current board member of the Alma Area Chamber of Commerce and member of the executive committee for Alma Kickstart and Alma Rotary Club.