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LITTLE ROCK, ARK. – Southern Bancorp Bank, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Bancorp, Inc. and one of the nation’s largest community development banks, has been selected to receive a Bank Enterprise Award of $233,244 from the U.S. Treasury’s CDFI Fund. The BEA program is a performance-based grant program that provides monetary awards to FDIC-insured depository institutions that increase their lending and investment activities in economically distressed communities.

“Southern is appreciative to the CDFI Fund for once again acknowledging our efforts to impact and bring economic opportunity to some of the nation’s most underserved and rural communities,” said Darrin Williams, CEO of Southern Bancorp, Inc. “These financial awards allow us to continue and build upon our mission, which is to be wealth builders for everyone.” Since 1996, Southern Bancorp organizations have received 21 financial awards from the CDFI Fund, totaling more than $19 million.

The CDFI Fund awarded nearly $25 million to 119 financial institutions across the nation, many of which are lending and providing financial services to communities where at least 30 percent of the population lives at or below the national poverty level. The awards were made through the fiscal year (FY) 2018 round of the BEA Program. To learn more about the CDFI Fund and its financial award programs, visit


About Southern Bancorp
Southern Bancorp, Inc., a bank holding company; Southern Bancorp Community Partners, a 501(c)(3) development finance and lending organization; and Southern Bancorp Bank, one of America’s largest rural development banks; were founded in 1986 by a group of business, political and philanthropic leaders who were concerned about the economic decline of rural Arkansas. All three entities are U.S. Treasury certified Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) collectively known as “Southern.” With $1.3 billion in assets, 65,000 customers and 46 locations in Arkansas and Mississippi, Southern invests in people and businesses in rural communities; empowers them to improve their lives; and helps them transform their communities. Learn more about Southern on the web at &

About the CDFI Fund
Since its creation in 1994, the CDFI Fund has awarded more than $3 billion to CDFIs, community development organizations, and financial institutions through: the BEA Program; the Capital Magnet Fund, the Community Development Financial Institutions Program, including the Healthy Food Financing Initiative; the Financial Education and Counseling Pilot Program; and the Native American CDFI Assistance Program.  In addition, the CDFI Fund has allocated $54 billion in tax credit allocation authority to Community Development Entities through the New Markets Tax Credit Program, and closed guaranteed bonds in the amount of $1.36 billion through the CDFI Bond Guarantee Program. Learn more about the CDFI Fund and its programs at