Ashlee L. Torpy
Chair, GBA Women in Banking Committee
EVP/Chief Risk Officer
Q: What was your first job, and was there a lesson you learned there that you still use today?
A: My first job was a file clerk at a law firm during high school. I worked there in the afternoons. The firm did a little bit of everything, and it definitely opened my eyes to a world bigger than what I had been exposed to at the time. I think the biggest takeaway for me was the importance of doing things right and how much details mattered for the client and overall outcome.
Q: What drew you to a career in the banking industry, and what has kept you there?
A: After college, I started working with the Georgia Department of Banking & Finance as an examiner. I worked there, and it gave me a good foundation on banking. I then moved to the “other side,” as they say. I have enjoyed working at Morris Bank, especially the opportunity to work in a variety of areas and various projects as the bank has grown.
Q: How has involvement with GBA affected your career?
A: GBA provides members with tremendous resources. I have enjoyed conferences, roundtables, and events over the years. The Women in Banking Conference is one of my favorites. It’s always helpful to get together and share ideas and things that have and haven’t worked. The programs are top notch and the GBA staff is always eager to help bankers.
Q: If you weren’t working in banking, what would you be doing instead?
A: I’d love to have a gift wrap shop. I don’t think that business model would work, but I do enjoy gift wrap supplies and wrapping presents.
Q: What would someone be surprised to learn about you?
A: I put up a Christmas tree full of ornaments made from gourds each year. My grandmother had a gourd farm and over the years collected a lot of ornaments from customers that she passed down. After gathering them, I had enough for a complete tree. Each ornament is pretty unique. The crafters have an eye for how to orient the gourd to make a Santa, reindeer and other holiday favorites.