NashvilleBusiness.Net 100 Leading African Americans 2018 Recipient: Dr. Deborah A. Cole

Click Here To Listen Nashville Business 100 Leading African Americans Dr Deborah A Cole-Citizens

Deborah A. Cole, a native Tennessean is a graduate of Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tennessee where she earned, with high distinction, the Bachelor of Science and Masters of Business Administration Degrees. She has completed numerous technical, regulatory, lending and strategic planning courses as part of her on-going bank related education and is a Certified Community Bank Compliance Officer. She is a graduate of the Graduate School of Banking of the South at Louisiana State University-Baton Rouge, Louisiana and received certification as a Trust Operations Specialist from the Cannon Financial Institute at the University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana. Deborah is a graduate of the Gemological Institute of America in the study of diamonds and colored stones and is, also, a Graduate Gemologist. Deborah also completed the requirements for a Doctor of Management (in Organizational Leadership) from the University of Phoenix, Phoenix, Arizona in 2009.

Her professional career began in 1975, when she joined Peat, Marwick, Mitchell and Company, currently KPMG LLP, as a Staff Accountant. She joined the staff of Citizens Savings Bank & Trust Co., Nashville, Tennessee in 1979 as Internal Auditor, has held numerous management positions and was appointed to the Board of Directors in 1985. The Board of Directors of Citizens Savings Bank & Trust Co. named Cole, President and Chief Executive Officer June 5, 1995. She is past Chairperson of the National Bankers Association (NBA), an association of minority – owned banks nationwide. Dr. Cole has the distinction of being the first female to hold both positions and is the longest serving African American female bank president.

Dr. Cole’s commitment to the community is evidenced by her continued involvement in community activities. Cole is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., serves on the Board of the American Bankers Association and Chairman of the ABA’s audit committee. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Ivy Center Foundation of Nashville, Incorporated. Cole recently served on the committee for the Women in Banking Conference held by the Tennessee Bankers Association and is a member of Board of Barret School of Banking—Memphis, TN. She is a Golden Life member of the NAACP.
Dr. Cole received an ABA—Wharton “Executive Leadership Certificate”, May 19, 2017. Cole currently serves on the Board of Trustees of Tennessee State University in the positions of Vice Chair of the Board and Chair of the audit committee; a member of the Economic Club of Nashville and serves on the Board of Thistle Farms as Treasurer. Dr. Cole is the National Treasurer of Consortium of Doctors. She has served on the Board of the Tennessee Student Assistant Corporation (TSAC), the ABA Advisory and Administrative Committees, served as Board Chairman—Tri State Minority Supplier Development Council; member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church Investment Advisory Board; the community Bank Advisory Committee for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Board of Directors of Tennessee Bankers Association (TBA); the Nashville Symphony; the Board of Governors, Nashville Chamber of Commerce; Board of Directors of the National American Diabetes Association (Southern Chapter); inducted into the originating class of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi at TSU. the Nashville Business Incubation Center and the Board of Advisors; College of Business (TSU), Tennessee State University Foundation; Board of Centennial Medical Center, Tennessee State University Inaugural Committee for Dr. Glenda Glover, Metropolitan Board of Property Standards and Appeals and the Northwest YMCA’s Black Achievers Committee. She was one of the founders of the Nashville Chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants.

Deborah is proudly the parent of Keenyattrice Ensley and the grandparent of Kiara NaCole Henry.

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