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Veteran Female Banker To Lead First Citizens BancShares Subsidiary

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Hope Holding Connell, the first women to serve as chair of the North Carolina Bankers Association, is the new president of IronStone Bank.

IronStone is a subsidiary of First Citizens BancShares.

Connell was named to the post on Tuesday. Earlier this year she was elected to the board of directors of First Citizens Bank and IronStone Bank. She also serves on the executive committee of each.

Connell was elected chair of the state bankers group in 2005.

"Hope Connell is an excellent leader and a strong executive, and has the broad perspective and knowledge to assume her new responsibilities," said BancShares Chairman Lewis Holding in a statement. "She has experience in virtually every facet of banking and management."

Connell, a native of Smithfield, N.C. and holder of two undergraduate degrees and an MBA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has worked more than 20 years in banking. She has been executive vice president of business banking for First Citizens since 2002. She is also head of the bank's Essential Services Group. Connell will continue to manage both groups, the bank said.

IronStone Bank operates 55 offices in nine states.

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