NASHVILLE -- Dennis C. Bottorff, a former engineering student, has helped engineer a remarkable turnaround at First American Corp. The company lost $62.4 million in 1990 and then came back with force, chalking up $102 million in 1993 earnings and a 1.50% return on assets.

But Mr. Bottorff, who took command at First American in late 1991 as president and CEO, faces a question familiar to other turnaround managers: What does one do for an encore? Sure, nonperforming loans have been whittled down to a comfortable level - 0.93% of total loans.

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