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Employee News

Employee Spotlight – Brittany Edwards

Brittany Edwards, Loan Operations Processor | SouthStar Bank Calvert Brittany Edwards is a Loan Operations Processor at the SouthStar Bank Calvert branch. Brittany began her career in banking with SouthStar Bank two and a half years ago and has quickly adapted to the industry’s unique challenges. Brittany received the 2022 Shining Star Award after just a year with the bank and is excited to continue to grow her knowledge and impact. She finds joy in helping customers build their dream homes and appreciates being a part of an industry that strives to exceed customer expectations and put a smile on every face. Outside of the office, Brittany enjoys attending her child’s sporting events, spending time with family, and enjoying the great outdoors.

Employee Spotlight – Samalia Huggins

Samalia Huggins, Commercial Loan Closing Coordinator | SouthStar Bank Harker Heights Samalia Huggins is a Commercial Loan Closing Coordinator at the SouthStar Bank Harker Heights branch. Samalia attended Miller-Motte Technical College and has worked in the banking industry for five years. She is proud to be a part of an organization that puts its customers and employees first. Samalia enjoys assisting customers in making their dreams come true, whether that be assisting them with purchasing their first home, buying an investment property, or taking out a loan to help someone get back on their feet. Samalia believes helping people is her gift from God, and she works tirelessly to help as many people as she can. Outside of the office, Samalia attends as many Harker Heights Chamber of Commerce events as possible to network and connect with community members. She also enjoys cooking, braiding hair, working out, and spending time with her family, especially her two grandkids! Samalia’s favorite travel destination is Guatemala, a long-awaited vacation she was able to take for her birthday after her kids surprised her with tickets. If she could meet anyone in history, living or dead, she would meet Nelson Mandela, whom she looks up to for standing on his views regarding peace no matter the obstacle or circumstance.

Welcome Jorden Caudle

Jorden Caudle, Credit Analyst | SouthStar Bank Leander Annex Jorden Caudle has joined the SouthStar Bank family as a Credit Analyst. Jorden received her degree at the University of Texas at San Antonio and has one year of experience in the banking industry. Jorden is looking forward to learning and growing in her position with SouthStar Bank and hopes to contribute to the growth of the credit department. Outside of the office, Jorden enjoys spending time with her friends and family, playing volleyball, and visiting the lake in the summer months.

Welcome Brittany Mantey

Brittany Mantey, AVP & Branch Manager | SouthStar Bank Round Rock Brittany Mantey has joined the SouthStar Bank Round Rock branch as an Assistant Vice President and Branch Manager. Brittany brings with her 12 years of experience in the banking industry, including a decade at her previous financial institution, where she worked her way up from her original teller role to her final position of Branch Manager. Her previous experience at a small-town community bank taught her the value of building lifelong relationships with her customers. Brittany is excited to join the SouthStar Bank family and looks forward to building relationships within the community and bank-wide. Outside of the office, Brittany enjoys spending time with her family, competing in BBQ cookoffs, and traveling, with their favorite destination being Destin, Florida. She spends much of her time with her children, accompanying them to sporting events and even coaching their softball team.

Employee Spotlight – Patty Barron

Patty Barron, Vice President & Mortgage Processing Manager | SouthStar Bank Leander Patty Barron is a Vice President and Mortgage Processing Manager at SouthStar Bank. Patty has spent over two decades in the mortgage industry with 23 years of experience, including four years at SouthStar. Her long tenure in the mortgage industry has allowed her to learn all aspects of the loan process, from application to closing. Patty has worn many hats throughout her professional journey and takes pride in finding success in the various positions she has held. She has also met many amazing people along the way and still enjoys learning and growing. The ever-changing landscape of the mortgage industry keeps things interesting and exciting for Patty. What Patty finds most rewarding in her role is helping borrowers achieve their dream of homeownership. Patty has ridden horses her entire life and still enjoys riding equestrian any chance she gets. She also enjoys boating and bowling with her family, along with all the fantastic moments that come with being a mother and wife. Most people don’t know that Patty served in the United States Air Force and was stationed in England during that time. Her favorite travel destination is Europe, where she was enamored by the various cultures and food. One item on Patty’s bucket list is to learn another language.

Welcome Hayley Harris

Hayley Harris, Personal Banker | SouthStar Bank Franklin Hayley Harris has joined the SouthStar Bank Franklin team as a Personal Banker. Hayley is new to the banking industry and, being a hometown Franklin girl, is excited to bring excellent customer service to the community she has grown up in and help all the familiar and new faces around town! Outside the office, Hayley enjoys traveling and spending time with her friends and family. Her favorite travel destination is Florida. A fun fact about Hayley is that gift-giving is one of her many hidden talents. She loves putting lots of time and thought into finding the perfect gift to make people feel special and appreciated.

Employee Spotlight – Lucia Fernandez

Lucia Fernandez, Assistant Electronic Funds Manager | SouthStar Bank Gonzales Annex Lucia Fernandez is an Assistant Electronic Funds Manager at the SouthStar Bank Gonzales Annex. Lucia has been with the bank for 10 years and holds 15 years of total banking experience. She received her Associate of Science Degree from Victoria College and is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Houston at Victoria. As a member of the Wire, ACH, and Business Online Departments, Lucia’s position is vital to the bank’s function and customer safety. The preventative measures the bank has in place enable Lucia and her peers to protect customers and their best interests. She finds the most rewarding part of her job is being able to prevent customers from falling victim to fraud. Lucia’s role also allows her to work with the branches and develop relationships with her coworkers across all locations, which she values greatly. When Lucia finds time outside of school and work, she enjoys several activities. She has spent the last five years serving as the Treasurer for the Smiley Bantam Activity Group, which works to provide safe, fun-filled events for the children of their community to enjoy. She also enjoys going out dancing with her husband, trying new restaurants, or enjoying a good movie with her family. Her favorite travel destination is Colorado Springs, where she and her family climbed the 224 steps to see the beautiful views of Seven Falls.

Employee Spotlight – Jordan Collier

Jordan Collier, Personal Banker | SouthStar Bank Franklin Jordan Collier is a Personal Banker at the SouthStar Bank Franklin branch. Jordan has been with SouthStar Bank for seven months and holds two years of banking experience. The aspect of her job she enjoys most is interacting with her customers. Jordan’s love for people makes her an ideal fit for her position and allows her to build meaningful, lasting relationships with everyone who enters the bank. Outside the office, Jordan enjoys spending time with her husband, daughter, and foster child. Jordan spent her honeymoon in Hawaii, which has since become her favorite vacation destination. If she could speak to anyone in the world, it would be her husband’s grandma, who created a strong legacy in her family.

Employee Spotlight – Jeremy Bernal

Jeremy Bernal, Information Technology Specialist 1 | SouthStar Bank Harker Heights Annex Jeremy Bernal has worked as an Information Technology Specialist I for the last three years at SouthStar Bank. He is located at the SouthStar Bank Harker Heights annex. In his role, Jeremy works hard to assist all employees with any technical issues they may run into. He takes pride in remedying these often frustrating issues and allowing the staff to work smoothly without interruption. Outside of work, Jeremy likes to spend his time helping people who struggle with substance abuse or alcoholism. He also enjoys saltwater fishing, traveling, and spending time with friends. His favorite destination he has traveled to is London, Ontario.

Employee Spotlight – Janis Cowman-Arteaga

Janis Cowman-Arteaga, Commercial Loan Closing Coordinator | SouthStar Bank Georgetown Janis Cowman-Arteaga is a Commercial Loan Closing Coordinator at the SouthStar Bank Georgetown branch. Janis has been with the bank for two and a half years and boasts over 38 years of overall experience in the banking and mortgage industries. Prior to joining the SouthStar Bank team, Janis owned and operated her own mortgage company for several years. She credits this experience with helping her develop perspective when working with small businesses. In her position, Janis enjoys utilizing her skills to derive what she finds most rewarding, which includes delivering on someone’s dream of home ownership and helping businesses grow with commercial business loans. Janis is plenty busy outside the office as well! Following her six years of service with the United States Marine Corps she became a lifetime VFW and Marine Corps League member. At home, Janis raises Lovebirds, tending to her flock in a large outdoor aviary that now houses 45 birds! Janis’ favorite travel destination is Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, which she believes to be one of the most scenic and serene places on the planet. She enjoys looking for minerals and gemstones to add to her collection when she visits.

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