First Farmers and Merchants in Columbia, Tenn., has named a new president and vice chairman.

The $1.2 billion-asset First Farmers promoted Brian Williams to president of both the holding company and First Farmers and Merchants Bank. Williams, 44, has worked for the bank since 1993 and was previously its acting chief financial officer. He's also been senior executive of commercial banking and chief credit officer.

First Farmers also named Timothy Pettus vice chairman of the holding company and bank, both newly created positions. Pettus, 63, was most recently the bank's president. He's also been regional president for the bank's southern region. He is also co-owner of Pettus-McClain Trucking Co. in Ethridge, Tenn. Pettus joined the bank in 2002.

First Farmers last month announced its plan to deregister as a publicly traded company.

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