By Dennis Seid/NEMS Daily Journal
After a 40-year career with BancorpSouth, longtime company Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Aubrey Patterson is retiring next year.
Patterson, 69, joined the then-Bank of Mississippi in 1972 and has worked his way up the ranks of the $13.3 billion financial holding company.
Patterson, who has served in his dual roles of the Tupelo-based financial holding company since 1991, will continue to be chairman and CEO until a successor is named and the transition is complete, according to the company.
A new leader is expected to be named by the next shareholders’ meeting in April 2013.
In a press release, Patterson said, “Because of my retirement plans, the board has initiated a succession process in which a special committee will oversee the search for, and recommend to the board, the best candidate to become CEO of BancorpSouth. I have every confidence that this transition process will be orderly and successful and that it will result in a new leader for BancorpSouth with the experience, skills and vision to build on our strong franchise history.”
BancorpSouth’s board of directors has formed a search committee to find Patterson’s replacement. Executive search company Spencer Stuart will advise the board.
Tupelo civic leader Jack Reed Sr., said Patterson is “a workaholic. I don’t know what he’s going to do with his time. I think a lot of Aubrey.
“I think he’s done an outstanding job with the bank. He’s an outstanding citizen for Tupelo. He’s been very generous with his time and his financial support. The bank has been a tremendous asset to the city.”
Reed and Patterson serve together on the boards of the Boy Scouts, CREATE and the Daily Journal.
Before being named both chairman and CEO 11 years ago, Patterson was president and chief operating officer from 1983-1990 and was named CEO in 1990. He was president and CEO from 1990 to 1991.
Carlie Kollath contributed to this report.