Darrin Williams, CEO of Southern Bancorp Inc. in Little Rock, has been appointed to the board of directors of the Little Rock Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
He will fill the unexpired portion of a three-year term that ends Dec. 31, 2023, and replace Karama Neal, administrator at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Business Cooperative Service. Neal previously served as president of Southern Bancorp Community Partners.
Williams stepped in to lead the holding company of the $1.9-billion asset lender Southern Bancorp Bank of Arkadelphia in 2013, after coming to prominence as a successful Little Rock lawyer and state legislator.
The bank is a Community Development Financial Institution and one of the largest rural development banks in the nation. Williams also oversees the its nonprofit arm, Southern Bancorp Community Partners.
Williams has been a prominent Black voice in addressing a gap in lending to minority businesses and has championed serving communities often overlooked by traditional financial service providers.