About SCBA

Proudly serving South Carolina’s banking industry since 1900, the SCBA is the professional trade association organized to effectively represent the common interest and welfare of the banking industry in South Carolina and to promote the professional development of its members and their employees. The SCBA’s primary focus is to serve as a reliable and responsive source of information and education regarding areas of importance to the industry, and to be the key advocate in helping our member institutions by providing leadership in legislative, regulatory, educational and value-added services. Products and services offered by our Preferred Vendors and Associate Members assist our member banks in most of their third-party arrangements.


  • Our legislative and regulatory advocacy creates and maintains a business-friendly environment for banks and their customers. We engage in state, federal and grassroots lobbying to promote favorable legislation for our members. We work closely with the American Bankers Association and with the Alliance of State Bankers Associations on federal issues and have frequent dialogue with our state’s Congressional delegation. Closer to home, we’re at the State House every day the General Assembly is in session, looking out for the best interests of our state’s banks and the industry. We regularly review regulatory proposals and analyze their potential impact on the industry. A key component of our government relations effort is the SCBA’s federal and state political action committees. The strength of these two PACs gives us the ability to support candidates for office who support our industry. Every year there are new issues to advocate for and against, and with strong PACs our voice is greatly amplified.

  • The SCBA offers more than 20 educational events annually, including conferences, seminars, symposia, schools and conventions, to promote the professional development of members by focusing on the constantly changing issues facing the industry in a relevant, timely manner. In addition, the SCBA operates the South Carolina Bankers School, consistently rated as a top choice for certification in the Southeast, with nearly 3,000 alumni.

  • The Community Bankers Division represents community banks headquartered in South Carolina. Its mission is to recognize the unique needs of those community banks and work toward helping them grow and prosper. Because many of South Carolina’s community banks consider the SCBA an essential arm of their training program, they play a key role in helping the SCBA develop its educational curriculum. By having broad-based participation from our community banks, the SCBA is able to bring in high-caliber speakers at a very cost-efficient manner for participants. In addition, the Division provides valuable input on our Preferred Vendor program and the products and services that community banks need to operate in a more efficient and profitable manner.

  • The Young Bankers Division provides leadership training and community outreach. The Division focuses on professional development, encourages networking with other professional groups and is the driving force for financial literacy outreach in the state. The Division raises money and awards college scholarships to the children of member-bank employees. The Division also helps promote the industry as an exciting career to rising college juniors and seniors and engages in recruiting bright talent for banks across the state.

  • We frequently speak for the industry to help promote banking through various media outlets and community forums. We are the recognized voice on industry topics, speaking on subjects related to financial services while leaving bank-specific issues to our members. We respond to media inquiries while advocating for favorable coverage on topics of importance to the banking industry.

  • Our membership includes bank members that do business in South Carolina and Associate Members that support our banks with valuable goods and services. One of the most important initiatives of the SCBA is to facilitate peer-to-peer interaction between member banks and business-to-business interaction between banks and Associate Members. An intangible benefit of membership in the SCBA is the lifelong relationships developed through attending and participating in many of our events.

In 1900, 16 bankers came together to form a trade association to promote the common interests of banks throughout South Carolina. More than a century later, bankers continue to carry on a professional tradition that has one of the deepest and long-running roles in the country – that of serving as the pre-eminent provider of financial services for individuals, businesses and communities.

With 53 charter members, the Association held its first formal convention in Columbia in April 1902. Annual dues were fixed at $5 for banks with capital of $50,000 or less and $10 for wealthier banks. The association grew rapidly and by 1910 – with 263 of the state’s 267 banks enrolled – ranked first in the nation in percentage of membership.
Through war, panic, depressions, recessions and deregulation, the SCBA has shaped policy and served communities in South Carolina. Here is a brief timeline of events in SCBA’s long-lived history:
  • 1900: South Carolina Bankers Association is formed.
  • 1942: SCBA president F. E. Grier asks at the annual meeting on the heels of Pearl Harbor, “What contribution is your institution making to the war effort?”
  • 1961: SCBA endows a chair of banking at the college of business administration of the University of South Carolina.
  • 1967: Palmetto Banker magazine is born.
  • 1971: The Women’s Division of the SCBA is created. (It was later integrated into the SCBA in the 1980’s.)
  • 1997: Savings & Loan League merges with the SCBA.
  • 2010: The SCBA welcomes its first female chairman, Teresa Knight of The Palmetto Bank.