BancorpSouth president, COO retiring in August



By Dennis Seid

Daily Journal

TUPELO – James Kelley, the president and chief operating officer of BancorpSouth, is retiring from the company on Aug. 15.

Kelley, 64, has served in those positions since 2000, when BancorpSouth merged with First United Bancshares of El Dorado, Ark. Before the merger, he was chairman, president and CEO of First United.

BancorpSouth’s $455 million acquisition of the then $2.7 billion-asset First United enabled the company to add 11 locations in Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana. Before the deal, BancorpSouth had locations only in Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee.

Kelley’s move comes on the heels of last week’s announcement that long-time BancorpSouth chairman Aubrey Patterson would retire at its shareholders meeting April 23.

BancorpSouth CEO Dan Rollins is chairman-elect.

Kelley’s retirement was mentioned In the Form 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission that announced Patterson’s retirement.

In the filing, the company also announced the retirements of Kelley, as well as Albert Clark, from its board of directors.

Clark, the president and CEO of CC Clark, a holding company for several beverage distributors, has been on BancorpSouth’s board since 1996. Clark also is president and CEO of Gulf States Canners, a bottler of several beverages, including Coca-Cola.

The 8-K also revealed the departure of Grace Clark from its board earlier in the month.

BancorpSouth’s board now consists of 17 members. The longest serving director is Franklin Corp. CEO Hassell Franklin, who has been on the board since 1974 and is its lead director.

At the April 23 shareholders meeting, five members have been nominated to extend their terms as directors: Warren Hood Jr., Alan W. Perry, Thomas H. Turner, W.G. Holliman Jr. and Turner O. Lashlee.

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