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Veteran Technology Executive Ann Madea Set to Join Simmons Bank - October 6, 2021

Little Rock, Ark. – Simmons Bank (Simmons) announced today that veteran financial services technology executive Ann Madea will be joining the bank, transitioning into the role of  executive vice president and chief information officer (CIO), where she will be responsible for the bank’s overall information technology strategy and operations.

Madea has over 25 years of technology experience, including the last 17 years at HSBC, one of the largest banking and financial services organizations in the world with operations in 64 countries and territories. During her career at HSBC, Madea served in a variety of leadership positions with increased responsibility, including the last four years as executive vice president and CIO U.S. Her primary focus centered on strategy, execution, operations and leading technology and business transformation while driving results that differentiate customer experience and business enablement.

“We’re very excited to welcome a well-respected industry veteran like Ann to the Simmons Bank team,” said George A. Makris, Jr., chairman and CEO of Simmons. “The knowledge and expertise that Ann brings to the table will be a tremendous asset in helping us implement industry best practices and stay ahead of the curve. With her leadership, we will continue to drive our technology platform forward, which is a critical component of delivering an exceptional customer experience.”

Passionate about women and girls in technology, Madea was recently the Executive Sponsor for the Summer Immersion Program for ‘Girls Who Code’, a nonprofit organization which aims to increase the number of women in computer science. She is also a frequent speaker, mentor, and coach dedicated to the advancement of women in business and technology. Madea holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and serves on the Advisory Board for UIC’s College of Engineering.

Over the next several months, Madea will work closely with current executive vice president and CIO, Paul Kanneman, in transitioning into her new role. Following the transition, Kanneman will continue with the bank utilizing his technology and business strategy expertise in a role focused on strategic research associated with the identification, review and assessment of emerging technologies, while also lending his experience on future M&A activities.

“Under Paul’s leadership, we have exponentially enhanced our technology capabilities which has enabled us to better meet our customers ever-changing needs,” said Bob Felhman, president and chief operating officer at Simmons. “We’re very glad that Paul will continue to lend his knowledge and insight into emerging technologies with potential benefit to the bank, while this new role also affords him the time to address a significant, long-term family medical challenge.”

Kanneman began working with Simmons in 2014 as an advisor while at Grant Thornton, LLP. In 2016, he assisted the bank with developing its first five-year technology roadmap. After retiring from Grant Thornton, Kanneman joined Simmons in 2017 as executive vice president and CIO.

Since joining the bank, Kanneman has been instrumental in leading the bank’s technology modernization program that became known as the Next Generation Banking initiative (NGB). Under this program, the bank successfully deployed new/enhanced platforms and/or capabilities in areas such as: mobile banking, commercial lending, treasury management, financial crimes, financial management and human resources. As part of NGB, he also led the complete redesign of the bank’s telecommunications infrastructure, data communications network and cyber security technology infrastructure. Kanneman also helped develop and install the bank’s first data warehouse capability that embedded data analytics within the lines of business and led the bank’s transition to a “Cloud First” strategy for the bank’s core technology processing systems. As chairman of the of bank’s crisis management committee, he assisted in leading the bank through its’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic.


About Simmons Bank

Simmons Bank is a wholly owned subsidiary of Simmons First National Corporation (NASDAQ: SFNC), a Mid-South based financial holding company with approximately $23.4 billion in assets as of June 30, 2021. Simmons Bank operates 198 branches, including 68 in Arkansas, 48 in Missouri, 33 in Tennessee, 23 in Texas, 20 in Oklahoma and 6 in Kansas. Founded in 1903, Simmons Bank offers comprehensive financial solutions delivered with a client-centric approach. Simmons Bank was recently named to Forbes magazine’s list of “World’s Best Banks” for the second consecutive year and ranked among the top 30 banks in Forbes’ list of “America’s Best Banks” for 2021. Additional information about Simmons Bank can be found on our website at, by following @Simmons_Bank on Twitter or by visiting our newsroom.


Simmons Bank
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