Columbia-based Heritage Bank & Trust has recruited Ben Rudd, an experienced West Tennessee banker, to be its president. Rudd takes over the president's spot from Paul Watson, a founding executive of seven-year-old Heritage who had been named to the position in the fall of 2010. Since then, Heritage tried to merge with TriStar Bank out of Dickson and downsized its board as it attempted to get a handle on losses related to the real estate bust. Through the first nine months of 2012, the two-office bank posted a profit of $40,000, down from $484,000 the year before.
“Ben brings to Heritage Bank & Trust a vast knowledge of the banking industry and a depth of experience in financial service and product delivery combined with outstanding leadership skills,” said Jim Robinson, Chief Executive Officer. “His focus on consumer service, professional attitude, lending experience and sense of urgency will be a huge asset in moving Heritage Bank and Trust forward in our efforts to continue to provide exceptional banking services to our community.”