An Interview With Fred Howell, Murfreesboro, Tennessee Market President
What’s your story? Where did you grow up and have you always lived in Tennessee?
I was born in Denver, Colorado but my family relocated to Murfreesboro when I was 10 years old. It’s where I went to middle school, high school and college. It’s where I married my high school sweetheart and raised my children.
How did you get into banking?
After high school I had a neighbor ask me if I was interested in a part-time job in the mail room of a community bank. I was able to get to know the employees and what all the various departments did and it’s when I knew that banking was the career for me.
How is the culture different at FirstBank compared to larger banks?
I spent half of my career with big banks and can tell you that there is a big difference in a community bank verses a big bank. The culture at FirstBank is like family. We care deeply about our employees, our clients and our community. The FirstBank culture is deeply rooted in community and we understand the importance of community and what community means.
What is your favorite part about your job?
The people! I love the daily interaction with my FirstBank family and our clients. I love the diversity each day brings and the ability to help make a difference in our client’s lives.
What do you like best about being a community banker?
The best part is knowing that the decisions we make and how we make them make a difference in the lives of our clients and the community. Murfreesboro has seen so much growth over the years and it’s rewarding to know that we have facilitated in that growth and have been blessed to help make so many dreams come true.
As a Market President, what’s your vision for FirstBank in Murfreesboro?
To be the best at what we do! When people need financial advice or have banking needs that they think of FirstBank first.
How do you think FirstBank’s local banking model gives customers more?
FirstBank puts each community in the hands of each local Market President. We are expected to know our market better than anyone else and make the decisions that are best for each market we serve. We make all our decisions locally because we know our clients and community best. This is the FirstBank difference. Committed to community and committed to you!
What is Murfreesboro known for?
Murfreesboro is known for a lot of things: being the center of the State of Tennessee, Stones River Battlefield, Middle Tennessee State University, but most of all our Southern hospitality and caring people.
Describe your perfect vacation.
The perfect vacation to me is one spent with family and filled with outdoor adventure.
FirstBank has again earned a coveted Five-Star Superior Rating from BauerFinancial, the nation’s best bank rating service analyzing and reporting on the financial condition of the nation’s banking industry since 1983. This means we’re one of the strongest financial institutions in the nation. Bank local at FirstBank and bank strong.