CEO Summit - Panelists


CEO Summit Panelists Committed Event Include (Alphabetical Order):

Jill Castilla
President & Chief Executive Officer
Citizens Bank of Edmond

Jill Castilla began her banking career with Citizens Bank of Edmond in 1998. Her progression then took her to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City where she managed multiple departments from check automation to HR for nine years. She then joined the senior management team at a Minnesota community bank. Prior to Castilla's employment at Citizens, she served in the U.S. Army and Oklahoma Army National Guard. In 2009, she rejoined Citizens and served in the positions of Chief Credit Officer, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer until 2014 when she was appointed to her current position. She is the 4th generation of ownership and management at Citizens.

Castilla has implemented several initiatives to communicate the mission of Citizens Bank and build on its relationship with the community. Under her leadership, Citizens Bank of Edmond introduced the Cash Mobs leading up to Small Business Saturday in November 2013 and have been doing them regularly since then. Citizens provides its staff money to shop at a particular small business on a given day and uses social media to promote that business. This helps support small businesses directly, where it matters, and lets them know that Citizens Bank of Edmond is not just a lender -- we are customers, too.

In 2013 and 2014, under Castilla's direction, Citizens Bank of Edmond began shooting YouTube videos in which staffers took popular songs such as Psy's "Gangnam Style" and Lorde's "Royals" and wrote new lyrics that reflected our attitudes and philosophies about community banking. These videos went viral and helped establish our reputation as an accessible, innovative bank that is customer focused.  And in September 2014, Castilla launched Heard On Hurd, a monthly street festival in downtown Edmond featuring local food, music and shopping. The first two festivals attracted 4,000 and 5,500 people, respectively, and underlined Citizens Bank of Edmond’s commitment to its hometown.

Castilla is the public voice and face of Citizens Bank of Edmond and takes an active role in the bank’s social media messaging. Her proactive and progressive stance as a community banker makes Castilla an important voice in banking on a local, regional and national scale, prompting American Banker Magazine to name her one of “25 Women to Watch” in October 2014.

In the past year, Castilla was named by Independent Community Bankers Association as a top social media influencer and received the Woman of the Year award by the Edmond Chamber of Commerce. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Graduate School of Banking and has a Master's in Economics from the University of Oklahoma. Castilla is a recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award from Hawaii Pacific University where she earned a BSBA in Finance. Castilla serves on the boards of directors for Oklahoma Bankers Association and Community Bankers Association of Oklahoma as well as trustee for UCO Foundation and Edmond Public Schools Foundation.



George A. Makris, Jr.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Simmons First National Corporation

George A. Makris, Jr. is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Simmons First National Corporation. Mr. Makris was elected to the Board of Directors of Simmons in 1997. He resides in Pine Bluff with his wife, the former Deborah Kirkpatrick. They have three children, George A. Makris III, Nicholas K. Makris, married to Lindsay, and John D. Makris. They have one grandson, Nicholas K. Makris, Jr. Mr. Makris received a B.A. degree in Business Administration from Rhodes College in 1978 and an M.B.A. from the University of Arkansas in 1980. He is a member of Trinity Episcopal Church.


Prior to his employment by the Company on January 2, 2013, Mr. Makris had been employed by M.K. Distributors, Inc. since 1980 and had served as its President since 1985. Mr. Makris previously served as a member of the board of directors of National Bank of Commerce from 1985 to 1996 and served as Chairman of the Board from 1994 to 1996.


Mr. Makris also serves as Chairman of the board of directors of The Economic Development Corporation of Jefferson County, Arkansas, a member of the board of trustees of the Jefferson Regional Medical Center and a member of the board of trustees of CHI St. Vincent. He has previously served as Chairman of the board of trustees of the Arts and Science Center for Southeast Arkansas, Chairman of the board of directors of the Economic Development Alliance for Jefferson County, Chairman of the board of directors of the Greater Pine Bluff Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the King Cotton Classic Basketball Tournament, Chairman of the board of trustees of Trinity Episcopal School, a director of Simmons First National Bank, a director of the Wholesale Beer Distributors of Arkansas, a director of the National Beer Wholesalers Association and a member of the board of visitors of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, College of Medicine.

Kevin Sabin
President and Chief Executive Officer
Arvest Bank

Kevin Sabin has been the President and Chief Executive Officer of Arvest Bank since November, 2012. Arvest is a $15 billion asset bank with more than 270 locations in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas. Prior to that date, he was President and Chief Operating Officer of Arvest beginning in 2002 after joining Arvest in late 1998. He started his banking career at First Commercial Bank in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1985.

Sabin serves on the Arvest Bank Board of Directors, is a member of the Executive Committee and serves on a number of Arvest subsidiary boards.


He received a Bachelor’s Degree from Oklahoma Christian University and an MBA from the University of Central Oklahoma. He and his wife, Henri, have three boys – Sam, Jake and Joe.

C. Randall Sims
President and Chief Executive Officer
Home BancShares, Inc.

C. Randall Sims was named Chief Executive Officer of Home BancShares in 2009.  In 2015, Mr. Sims was named President of Home BancShares, Inc.  From 1998 to 2015, Mr. Sims was Chief Executive Officer and President of Centennial Bank (formerly First State Bank).  Since 1998, he has been a director of Home BancShares.  He also serves as a member of Asset/Liability Committee of Home BancShares.  From 1998 to 2009, he served as Secretary of Home BancShares.  Prior to joining First State Bank, Mr. Sims was an executive vice president with First National Bank of Conway.  He holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree in accounting and business administration from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas.  He attended the Graduate School of Banking at the University of Wisconsin and is an honor graduate of the American Bankers Association National Commercial Lending School held at the University of Oklahoma.  Mr. Sims formerly served as a Trustee at the University of Central Arkansas and was Chairman of the Conway Christian School Board for 17 years.  He is currently serving on the Board of Trustees at Ouachita Baptist University.  Mr. Sims’ educational background in accounting, business, law and banking provides him a wide-ranging set of skills for the management of a public company such as Home BancShares.  He has served as Chief Executive Officer for our bank subsidiary for over 16 years and has extensive banking and executive experience.  As Chief Executive Officer of the holding company and the bank and as a long-time director of both entities and other organizations, he brings knowledge of the day-to-day management of the Company as well as expertise in many areas, including financial, corporate governance, risk assessment, and operational matters.

Larry T. Wilson

Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer
First Arkansas Bank & Trust


  • Jacksonville High School -- Honor Graduate, 1966


  • University of Arkansas -- Bachelor of Science in Industrial Management, 1970; Master of Science in Business Administration, 1971.


  • Arkansas Banking School -- Graduate, 1972


  • The School of Banking of the South at Louisiana State University -- Graduate, 1977  




  • Association of Military Banks of America -- Director, 1992 – present; Chairman, 2008 – 2010 
  • Arkansas Bankers Association – Chairman, 2006; Vice Chairman, 2005; Treasurer 1999 – 2001; Director, 1996 – 1999.
  • American Bankers Association – Team 21 Member (Political Action Team), 2003 – present

  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau- Community Bank Advisory Council, 2012-present

  • Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis-Community Depository Institutions Advisory Council, 2011-present




  • Alderman, City of Jacksonville, 27 years – ending in 2004


  • Little Rock Air Force Base Community Council; President, January 2000 – December 2001, Executive Committee Member 2001 – present, Base Realignment and Closure Task Force Chairman 2003


  • Jacksonville Rotary Club, Past President, Director


  • Bayou Meto Cemetery Board of Trustees, Chairman, 1984 - 2003


  • Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, President, 1987 and 2000


  • Greater Little Rock Chamber of Commerce, Director;Chairman, Military Affairs Committee, 1991 - 2000


  • University of Arkansas at Little Rock -- Board of Visitors, 1995 - 2006


  • University of Arkansas – Walton College of Business Administration, Dean’s Executive Advisory Committee, 1994 – present; Chairman, 2008 – present


  • University of Arkansas – Walton College of Business Administration, Chairman

    $100 Million Capital Fund Campaign, 2002-2005


  • Arkansas Business Hall of Fame – Selection Committee Chairman


  • University of Arkansas – Board of Advisors 2006 – present


  • Arkansas Council on Economic Education Board Member and Officer, 2003 – 2005


  • Jacksonville Water Commission – Commissioner, 2004 – present


  • Hendrix College, Board of Trustees, 2012-present  




  • First United Methodist Church -- Finance Committee, 1979-present; Pastor-Parish Relations Committee, Chairman, 1986, 1993 – 2000, 2003-2004


  • United States Air Force, Military Airlift Command -- Distinguished Citizen Award – 1992


  • United States Air Force, Air Combat Command (Langley AFB, VA) -- Commander's Support Group, 1993 – 1995


  • United States Air Force, Air Education and Training Command, Community Council Member, 2003 – 2007


  • USAF, Air Mobility Command, Community Council Member, 2008 – 2010


  • Little Rock Air Force Base, Cornerstone Award for Outstanding Service – 2009


  • Sigma Chi Fraternity, Fulbright Award for Alumni Achievement – 2009

Commercial Banker of the Year

Nomination Form  Deadline April 17, 2015

Six Finalists will be recognized at the Central Arkansas Risk Management Association Chapter 2015 Signature Event: CEO Summit Luncheon & Panel Discussion to be held on Thursday, May 14, 2015 from 11am – 1pm CST at the William J Clinton Presidential Center Grand Hall.  Winner of the 1st Annual Commercial Banker of the Year Award will be announced during the program.  Any FDIC Insured Bank associate working in a commercial function or support role including all lenders, credit analysts, credit risk officers, loan review, market presidents, loan assistants, business bankers, chief lending officer, executive management and calling officers.  If in doubt, please inquire.

Each Nominee will be carefully evaluated by the Selection Committee consisting of volunteers.  The following criteria are applicable to the nominee’s line-of-business responsibilities:  Responsible Credit Analysis, Deal Origination, Customer Service, Business Development, Experience, Community Involvement & Financial Risk Management.

             Sponsored By   

CBOTY - Selection Committee

2015 Selection Committee Members

Heartsill Ragon III - Gill Ragon Owen
Gary Edwards, CPA - BKD LLP
Robert Smith - Friday, Eldridge & Clark
Heather Robinette, MBA, CBA - Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center at University of Arkansas at Little Rock
Chad Kaufman - Junior Achievement of Arkansas
Ronnie Peters - DD&F Consulting
David Marks - Arvest Bank

2015 CBOTY Finalists

Six amazing commercial bankers were selected from a very talented pool of nominations.  The Selection Committee choose four bankers from Central Arkansas and two bankers from Surrounding Areas of Arkansas.  The finalists are presented in alphabetical order. All six will be recognized during CEO Summit on May 14.  The overall winner will be announced live on-stage at the event.

Bob L Burns - CEO – Farmers Bank & Trust / Magnolia

Russell ‘Russ’ W Martin Jr – SVP Commercial Lending – Relyance Bank / Little Rock  

Rodney Peel
– SVP Commercial Lender – Arvest Bank / Little Rock

Carole J Smith – SVP Commercial Loan Officer – Simmons Bank / Little Rock

Debra Taylor - VP Commercial Lending - First Community Bank / Jonesboro

2015 Commercial Banker of the Year - Award Winner

Bob Burns / Farmers Bank & Trust - Magnolia