Anne Bell retires from Bank of North Georgia
by CELIA SHORTT
Anne Bell, lifetime Cowetan, avid member of the community, president of the former Bank of Coweta and most recently regional community executive overseeing the Coweta, Fayette, Henry, Rockdale, and Newton county markets for the Bank of North Georgia, is retiring.
"I've loved walking through these doors everyday," Bell said. "Every day was different, and every day had new challenges. One of the most exciting experiences I've been blessed with is working alongside all the team members here, helping people."
Bell was born and raised in Newnan and never had the desire to live anywhere else. She started her banking career in 1974 at the Bank of Coweta. Her first position was as a teller for the drive-through window and a proof operator.
"Banking was not electronically driven then," said Bell. "Everything was done by hand. I have gotten to see a lot of changes in the industry."
In her 39 years at the bank, there is not an area in which Bell has not worked. When asked at how she approached her career, Bell fondly recalls growing up in Newnan and the lessons she learned working with her family in their nursery.
"I grew up seeing work ethic and what it looks like to give 110 percent every day. That is how I approached my career."
Bell also brought to her career a passion for relationships, not just with her family, but with her team at work, the people they serve, and the community at large.
"We are passionate about relationships we've formed over the many years," she said. "We get to know people well enough to know their happy times or sad times and then what we can do to help them through those."
Bell brought that passion into the recent consolidation between the Bank of North Georgia and the Bank of Coweta and into her life outside of the bank.
"By bringing together the banking professionals, expertise, and resources of the two Synovus Bank divisions as one united team, we can leverage our talent, a common name, consistent branding, and advertising for future success in these markets," she said about the recent consolidation. "Our customers will continue to be served by the same team members they've been banking with for years."
In addition to her banking career, Bell serves as a board member of Habitat for Humanity in Newnan, the Newnan-Coweta Chamber of Commerce, and is a supporter of the mission of the Boys and Girls Clubs.
Bell married her high school sweetheart, Dennis, with whom she has a daughter. This past March, Dennis passed away. His death caused her to evaluate her life and what she was currently doing with it.
"Dennis was my high school sweetheart. Our 40th wedding anniversary would have been in July, and we dated for three years before we got married," she said. "Anybody who is going to be successful in a business, you always have to have someone with you to help you down that journey. Dennis was that for me. I realized I've been here 39 years and gave it my all. Now, it's time for me to give that to my daughter for her and my time together, knowing that time is short and time is precious and wanting to build more into family," she said.
Her daughter, Lauren, is disabled, has come up through the Coweta County School System and currently works at Publix.
A retirement reception was held in the W. Scott Wilson Building at Bank of North Georgia's main office in Newnan on Thursday. A beach theme was used for Bell's party – for decorations and refreshments including the cake. The honoree wore flipflops, and guests were invited to do likewise.
As far as how Bell's plans for retirement, she wants to travel and spend time working on her hobbies. Most importantly though, she is looking forward to taking care of Lauren.
"She and I together are a great team and have a lot of fun."
Do not worry though, Bell still plans on being involved in the community and even stopping by the bank to check on everything there and spend time with those who she has shared her life with for the last 39 years.