From helping people achieve their dreams to personally hunting down bank robbers, Georgeann Whitworth (PNC Bank) has just about done it all as she approaches the sunset of her banking days.
By Kyle Morey, Madison County Chamber
Georgeann Whitworth of PNC by Dale Pickett Photography
During a video shoot with Small Business of the Year award finalist Lambert's Music Center, I asked owner Judy Lambert who was instrumental in helping her business get off the ground. Without hesitation, Judy affectionately said, "Georgeann Whitworth!"
As I work my way around meeting other chamber members, I find that Georgeann's name comes up more times than not and always with affection. A consummate relationship-builder and maintainer, Georgeann is the first person we call when we at the chamber don't know someone. She volunteers her time and talents to over 30 chamber events a year, serves as a MCC board member, delivers your new member welcome packet complete with a firm handshake and warm smile, and brings a positive attitude to everything she does. As you will learn in the following interview, it is not about the number of written loans to Georgeann, it is about helping people achieve their dreams. And countless individuals are running successful businesses and organizations thanks to Georgeann's tireless and caring work ethic. It will be a sad day for our business community come April when she retires. But have no fear, I don't think we have seen the last of Georgeann.
I can't wait to give a standing ovation to MCC's Ambassador of the Year Georgeann Whitworth on February 28th!
Interview with Georgeann Whitworth
Kyle: What is your current title/job, and how long have you been in it?
Georgeann: My current title is Vice President, Business Banking. I have been in this position for 20 years but have been with the bank for 35 years.
Kyle: Why did you choose this industry/job?
Georgeann: went to the unemployment office (after my son went to school full time) and there was an opening as a part time teller at the 29th Street Branch of Anderson Banking Company. So I thought, part time is good, but it ended up being full time and the rest is history.
Kyle: What is the funniest/strangest job you've ever had?
Georgeann: We were self employed for 26 years in the service station business. I guess that wasn't strange, just hard. That's why I went to the bank.
Kyle: What three pieces of advice would you give to young people entering the workforce?
Georgeann: 1. Always be honest no matter what type of business you are in. 2. Always do what you promise. "Oh, I forgot" doesn't get it. 3. I always have gone by the golden rule and treat people as you want to be treated. Or as I say, "What goes around comes around."
Kyle: How do you define success?
Georgeann: Success to me is being a good person and helping people. It may not always be in a monetary form, but when I see my customers succeed, I feel as if I have also succeeded.
Georgeann Whitworth poses with fellow MCC Board Members at 2012 Awards Gala by Dale Pickett Photography
Kyle: Who has been your greatest inspiration?
Georgeann: A former banker and good friend, John May, was a great inspiration. I never did use any of his Mayism sayings, but it was him that encouraged me to volunteer and get involved with the community.
Kyle: What has been your most scary moment in your career?
Georgeann: I was standing outside with a customer, and a man walked right between us and I thought it was odd because it was August and he had a hooded sweatshirt on. I was getting in my car and saw him take off the sweatshirt, I called the branch, and they had just been robbed so I took off after him in my car. I didn't even think about how dangerous that could have been until I was safe back at the branch.
Kyle: What has been your most satisfying moment in your career?
Georgeann: In 2008 I received the Character in Business Award from the Madison County Chamber. This was one of the best things that has happened to me. I then realized maybe I did make a difference in the lives of my customers and friends.
Kyle: What is one interesting fact about you that most people don't know?
Georgeann: My parents were missionaries and we lived on an Indian Reservation in Montana. Custer's battlefield was our back yard.
Kyle: Why do you choose to live/work in Madison County?
Georgeann: Madison County is a great place to live. I am originally from Chicago and appreciate Anderson even more when we go and visit. People here are so friendly and willing to help, even a stranger.
Kyle: What makes you happy?
Georgeann: I am so blessed to have such a wonderful family, husband, son, granddaughter and such good friends. I don't know where or what I would be if I didn't have them.
Kyle: What do you donate your time to?
Georgeann: I volunteer at Alternatives, Inc., Chamber of Commerce, United Way, I am on the Corporation for Economic Development Board, Anderson Revolving Loan Fund Board, and Women in Philanthropy Committee.
Kyle: What single word best describes you?
Kyle: Mac or PC?
About the Award
The Ambassador of the Year honor is awarded to an individual who strongly supports the mission of the Madison County Chamber through ongoing work with and dedication to the activities of the Ambassadors Regional committee.
Georgeann Whitworth, along with several other distinguished individuals, companies and non-profits, will be honored at the Madison County Chamber's Annual Awards Gala held on February 28, 2013 from 6 to 9 pm at the Paramount Theatre in downtown Anderson. Tickets can be purchased online or by calling Tina at 765-642-0264.