First Community’s newest banking center opens in Conway

By Stefanie Brazile

The staff of First Community Bank in Conway is excited about opening a new banking center at 766 Harkrider Street and will host a grand opening event in May.

“Dreams are made here,” said Community President Grant Gordy. “We like to meet our customers where they are, take them where they want to go and take the steps necessary to aid them in that effort.”

Photos by Mike Kemp

First Community Bank, owned and managed by Arkansans, opened in 1997 in Batesville (Independence County) and operates in 33 locations across Arkansas and Missouri. In 2019, they opened a branch on Front Street in Conway, with plans to build a full-service banking center. Now completed, the staff is enjoying the two-story, 17,034 sq. ft. building located on the former site of Second Baptist Church, which occupied the grounds for more than 100 years.

“This is somewhat hallowed ground with respect to the church being here, and we tried to pay respect and homage to the weddings, funerals and baptisms and provide a facility that would honor this respected ground,” Gordy said. “I think we’ve struck a nice chord with this facility, and we’re optimistic that it will be received as a positive addition to the Harkrider corridor.”

Senior Vice President of Business Development Lori Melton (from left), Community President Grant Gordy and Vice President of Commercial Lending Jackie Bennett are ready to help customers at the new banking center in Conway.

With 23 enclosed offices, four conference/meeting rooms, and a 60-person community room with accessible balconies, the brick structure with spacious windows offers the staff a view of Conway’s bustling activities. “Hopefully, it strikes a balance between a new build and the historic downtown feeling,” Gordy said.

Lori Melton, senior vice president of business development in Conway, chose the artwork throughout the facility. “Our goal with the artwork is to tell the story of Conway and its people since our founding,” Melton said. “This was done with approximately 50 specially curated historic photos taken throughout the decades. Several were converted into special works of art, such as oil paintings and pen-and-ink drawings. Each art piece explains the story behind the photo.”

Another unique offering is the community room, which is provided at no cost to nonprofits, civic clubs, small groups and anyone seeking a place to meet or host a seminar for up to 60 people. First Community Bank extends this resource in all major market locations. The spacious room is on the second floor, offering a bird’s-eye view of the downtown area. It has complete audio-visual capabilities and a full catering kitchen, and there are multiple ways to set up the room. Call the bank to make a reservation. “We pride ourselves in making that available 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” Gordy said. “First Community’s tagline, ‘Where the community comes first,’ is more than just that; our leaders believe in adhering to that mantra by supporting nonprofits in our communities.

“We welcome the opportunity to serve customers, and if given the privilege, we want people to see the difference in what banking with First Community is all about,” Gordy said. “We have been able to assemble a seasoned, all-star team of bankers because the story of this bank is compelling, and we take care of our colleagues and our customers.”

Learn more about the community room by calling 501.764.9640.