Former FNB shareholders fast-track new community bank

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A group of former shareholders of Christiansburg-based FNB Corp. is creating a new community bank after failing to block a merger between FNB and Charlottesville-based Virginia Financial Group. Those two organizations have since combined to create StellarOne Bank, a statewide bank with $3 billion in assets and a corporate headquarters in

The NewRiver Bank, as the new Southwest Virginia bank is being called, already has formed an affiliation with Hometown Bank in Roanoke and opened a loan production office in Christiansburg. It has applied for a charter, and officials expect to open a branch in June, when the bank will begin accepting deposits.

The former senior president for commercial lending at FNB, Tommy Loflin, has been named president of NewRiver Bank.

“So many people were just so upset with the fact that a local bank was sold out by outsiders that we just view this as a tremendous opportunity to step in and fill the void that was left by the abdication of this market,” says Kendall Clay, an attorney in Radford who is helping to spearhead the effort.

To protect against future outsider influence, the new bank will include several safeguards in its articles of incorporation, including requirements for a two-thirds vote of shareholders to approve a merger and a unanimous vote by the board of directors to put such a proposal before the shareholders.

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