NEWS RELEASE For Immediate Release
May 23, 2022

Contact: John Heeden
Southern Bank
(919) 658-7025

(Mount Olive – May 23, 2022) — Southern BancShares (N.C.), Inc., parent holding company of Southern Bank and Trust Company headquartered in Mount Olive, North Carolina has announced the promotion of Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer David L. (Dave) Sauls, Jr. to Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for the corporation. Sauls succeeds former CFO Dan Ellis, who retired at the end of April this year. The announcement was made by Southern Bank Chairman and CEO Drew Covert.

“We are quite pleased that Dave will assume this role for our organization,” said Covert. “He brings a tremendous amount of experience and expertise into this role and we are extremely confident in his abilities to successfully lead our Corporate Finance team and feel fortunate to have him as a key member of our Leadership Team. Having worked closely with Mr. Ellis over the past decade, this truly will be a seamless transition.”

A native of Goldsboro, North Carolina, Sauls attended East Carolina University where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Accounting as well as a Master of Science in Accounting. After completing his degree, he began his career with Dixon Hughes Goodman, LLP and received the designation of Certified Public Accountant. During his tenure at Dixon Hughes Goodman, LLP, he focused primarily on financial institutions, managing the financial statement audits of a number of community banks in North Carolina. In 2012, Sauls joined Southern Bank and Trust Company and served as its Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer since 2015. On May 1, 2022, Sauls transitioned into the CFO role, as well as Corporate Secretary of Southern Bank and Trust Company and its parent company, Southern BancShares (N.C.), Inc.

Sauls resides in Pikeville, North Carolina with his wife and three children. He currently chairs the Board of Trustees for the North Carolina Bankers Association’s Health Benefit Trust and is a member of the Board of Directors for the Mount Olive Community Development Corporation. He was an inaugural and former member of the North Carolina Young Bankers Association, and former Treasurer and Finance Committee member of his church. He is a member of the North Carolina Association of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. In 2018, he was selected as one of Business North Carolina Magazine’s inaugural Trailblazers, an award given to young professionals thriving in North Carolina communities with fewer than 100,000 residents.

Founded in 1901, Southern Bank is a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern BancShares (N.C.), Inc. With its Corporate Headquarters located in Mount Olive, the Bank has total assets of over $4 billion and over 60 locations serving North Carolina and Virginia. More information about the Bank is available on the Internet at

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