Ailing Kentucky Bank Has New CEO

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Porter Bancorp (PBIB) of Louisville, Ky., did not have to look far to find the new leader for its struggling bank.

In the latest of several management shifts, Porter announced Thursday that John T. Taylor, who had been the president and chief executive officer at the $381 million-asset American Founders Bancorp in nearby Lexington, Ky., has been named president and chief executive of PBI Bank. Taylor also took on the president title at Porter, PBI's holding company.

In all three of those roles, he succeeds Maria L. Bouvette, who remains the holding company's chairman and CEO.

"Our board's search committee identified John early in the process because of his knowledge of our Kentucky markets, his expertise in credit management and special assets and his experience as president and CEO of a bank in one of our markets," Bouvette said in a press release. "As the new CEO for PBI Bank, he will be responsible for leading the bank through the challenging economic environment, reducing the level of nonperforming assets, and growing earnings while maintaining our high level of quality service for our customers."

The $1.4 billion-asset Porter has struggled with high levels of loan defaults in the wake of the real estate crash. At March 31, nonperforming assets at PBI totaled $133.5 million, or 9.6% of total assets, according to data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

The bank also has been operating under a consent order from the Kentucky Department of Financial Institutions and the FDIC since June 2011. The order requires the bank to have a leverage ratio of 9% and a total risk-based capital ratio of 12%. At March 31, those ratios were at 6.23% and 10.86%.

Though Taylor is the only new face, Porter has made a series of management changes over the past few months. J. Chester Porter, who founded the company 25 years ago, retired as chairman of Porter and PBI, and Bouvette took over his chairman roles at both entities.

Porter also recently named David B. Pierce as its chief risk officer. Pierce had been its chief financial officer since 2006. Phil W. Barnhouse, the CFO for PBI, succeeded Pierce as the CFO for Porter.

Taylor is a 28-year banking veteran. Before joining American Founders in 2007, he had senior management positions for Pittsburgh's PNC Bank, including serving as president of its Ohio/Northern Kentucky region for six years. The University of Kentucky alum also serves on an advisory council for the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

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