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Columbia Business Monthly

United Community Bank to Launch Branch Operations in Midlands with Two Locations

Dec 02, 2020 03:21PM ● By David Dykes
(Photo Provided: Erica Smith, Morgan Leath, United Community Bank)

 COLUMBIA – United Community Bank said it will expand operations in the Midlands region with its first branch locations in two highly-trafficked locations.

The offices build on the presence established by the bank in 2019 with the addition of a regional leadership and commercial team in the area, led by Shannon Stephens.

The full-service branches will be at 4018 Forest Drive in Columbia and 5346 Sunset Boulevard in Lexington.

"Our team has done an incredible job growing our customer base in the area over the past 15 months, and with that development, we recognized a real opportunity to add branch locations to better serve our customers’ daily needs," said Rich Bradshaw, United's chief banking officer.

United plans to open both branches on Dec. 14 for full service. They are the first branches in the Midlands, but United has 30 branches around the state, including concentrations in the Upstate, Charleston and the Grand Strand area.

Overall, the bank has over 160 branches across Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, and most recently, Florida. The Columbia-area locations both were previous Southern First Bank locations.

"We could not be more excited to serve our customers in these ideally located offices," said Stephens, Midlands president. "We’re pleased to expand our capabilities for our current customers and look forward to welcoming new customers into our family as well."

Veteran Columbia banker Morgan Leath has joined United as regional banking manager and will oversee operations at both locations.

Leath is a lifelong South Carolina resident and has spent nearly all of his career in retail banking roles. He has previous experience managing branches throughout the Midlands region, including offices in Cayce, Lexington and downtown Columbia.

"I am thrilled to join the United team and be a part of building our brand in this market. While branch operations have looked different this year, I know how much customers value having access to our bankers as a resource for their financial needs. I look forward to serving our Midlands community with United," Leath said.

Leath is a graduate of The Citadel.

Erica Smith has also been added as branch manager for the Lexington location. She has more than 10 years of banking experience and has worked in the Lexington community for many years.

Smith is a Lexington native and a graduate of the University of South Carolina.

United Community Banks, Inc. (NASDAQ: UCBI) (United) is a bank holding company headquartered in Blairsville, Georgia, with executive offices in Greenville, South Carolina.

United is one of the largest full-service financial institutions in the Southeast, with total assets exceeding $17 billion.