On Jan. 10 Junior Achievement (JA) announced the 2022 Laureates for the 31st annual Eastern Business Hall of Fame. This year being honored is former Bath State Bank President George Ferriell.

"This is the first year in many that an individual outside of Wayne County has been selected, so it’s pretty exciting for the area," said Melissa Davis, district director of JA Eastern Indiana.

Also included are Laureates Mike Cramer of Primex Plastics and Sue Miller of Brady Ware (retired). The induction ceremony will be held Thursday, March 10 at Forest Hills Country Club in Richmond.

These three honorees will join a distinguished group of 73 men and women inducted into the JA Eastern Indiana Business Hall of Fame since its founding in 1991. These Laureates are chosen by a selection committee of business and community leaders, independent of JA.

To give some background on Mr. Ferriell, he worked at Bath State Bank for 32 1/2 years; he was on the board of directors for 36 years. Ferriell was promoted to president in May 2007 and held that position until retirement at the end of 2018. Looking back, he said, "During my tenure as president, we converted to a Subchapter S Corporation, built the College Corner branch, added an ATM in Liberty, and relocated our ATM in Brookville." Since then, Bath State Bank management has continued to add services, in addition to expanding their lending area.

When asked his feelings about the award, Ferriell replied, "Being honored in the Eastern IN Business Hall of Fame has been overwhelming and one of the greatest honors for me. I have to thank my family. They have always supported me. I would also like to thank our Bath State Bank family for their support as well. And finally, the JA of Eastern Indiana Board of Directors -they are fantastic and it's been a wonderful opportunity to work with them."

Bath State Bank has been an avid supporter of Union County, sponsoring countless school and community programs throughout decades. When asked about their neighborhood support, the former bank president added, "We have had multiple community outreach programs over the years. I am most proud of the staff. They put their heart and soul into everything they do. And everything we do, we do it together."

Mr. Ferriell has been involved with JA throughout his career, serving on the board of directors for 36 years. He made regular classroom appearances and would consult JA programs at UCHS, UCMS, CCUS and other schools outside the area.

Since retiring, he has stayed in most of his volunteer positions. He enjoys attending his grandson's sporting events, spending more time with his family and helping to take care of his ninety-seven-year-old father.

JA of Eastern Indiana has the goal to educate and inspire young people for success in the global economy. They provide free JA programming to local schools on the topics of financial literacy, workforce readiness and entrepreneurship. JA of Eastern Indiana serves Wayne, Fayette, Franklin, Dearborn and Union counties; it impacts around 3,500 students each year.