"I couldn't be happier with First State Bank's Small Business Lending! They understood my timeline and shared my sense of urgency. They also made the rigorous SBA process much easier on me. I would recommend First State Small Business Lending Division to any small business. Many thanks Sean, Judi, Eli, and the entire First State team!"

Lisa Seelig Rolin
Fox Ridge Pizza/Affordable Catering, Memphis, TN

"We have been talking with our banker here locally for over six months about wanting to grow our business and needing a line of credit. They had always responded and told us that they didn't see a problem but never came through for us. Then we met and talked with Turner Gaw (First State Small Business Lending). We were both amazed at how much he understood our business and how quickly he responded with our preliminary paperwork and approvals. We honestly thought that there must be a 'catch' because it was so easy! The loan process with Kristie Lawson (at First State) was seamless and she was always quick to explain exactly what they needed and when.

Once our closing date was set, we were contacted quickly and even closed at our home without one problem! I had always heard that getting an SBA loan was hectic, but working with First State made it much easier! We are looking forward to growing our business and even purchasing real estate in the near future and will definitely call Turner!"

Kristi Stokes
Servpro of North Richland Hills


"Our small business had worked with our previous "too big to fail" bank for over two years to restructure our working capital line of credit to no avail and with little helpfulness on their part. Our accountants introduced us to Turner Gaw at First State Bank and after spending about six months working with him and Dwight Bateman, they had crafted a very creative and intelligent financing arrangement for our company-wide needs. Our underwriting experience led by Andi Bullington was extremely efficient, enjoyable and thoughtful as well.

We've been consistently impressed with the personal service and banking partnership approach of everyone in their operation. We highly recommend bringing your banking and financing needs to the First State Bank team - they've really helped us lay a good foundation for yet further growth that we otherwise probably would not have been able to undertake since switching to First State Bank."

Steven Scesa
Wellness Solutions, Nashville & Murfreesboro, TN


Dwight, I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate all that First State Small Business Lending did for me when I needed you. Having my loan rejected last minute from my personal bank of 20 years was quite a shock. First State really came through! Your staff was very knowledgeable and efficient. Judy and Turner were great to work with. I would highly recommend your bank to anyone who is in need of a quality bank. If there is anything I can ever do for you please don't hesitate to call.

Dennis McKinley


Exela is a growth-stage pharmaceutical development and manufacturing company in North Carolina. Due to the uncertainties in the nature of our business (e.g., FDA) approvals, patent litigation, market size fluctuations, fierce competition from overseas, ect.) our revenues are not consistently predictable. Given the poor state of the economy it has been quite challenging to raise funds from both the credit and the equity. Our primary bank (one of the top three in the country) with which we have had a banking relationship for over 8 years practically abandoned us.

First State Bank however, was willing to spend the time to conduct an in-depth review to understand our business, then visited our facility and met with the management team and employees. The bank the shepherded the complicated SBA loan process and persisted, despite many hurdles. Without First State Bank's dedicated team and commitment, we would not have obtained the SBA loan. We are thankful to the SBA and to First State Bank because this loan will help us get to the next state of our growth; and continue to create additional jobs in the disadvantaged Caldwell County are of North Carolina. In my view, First State Bank is a visionary bank that is able and willing to think outside of the box- exactly the kind of bank for our progressive company.

Phanseh Koneru, Ph.D. LL.M., President & CEO
Exela Holdings, Inc.
Customer since 2013