GBA Member Profile

Steven Kirk Cavanah, CAFP CAMS CFCS CRCM
Compliance Officer
Morris Bank, Statesboro
Vice Chair, 2021-2022 GBA Compliance Committee

Q: What was your first job, and was there a lesson you learned there that you still use today?
A: My first job was with a local Tire & Auto shop in Swainsboro, GA. I started working there at 14 years old with my Dad mostly in the afternoons after school and during summers. I worked with a great group of people and learned many lessons from this experience that opened my eyes to the value of hard work and finished results, which strengthened me to be very results-oriented today. The lessons I learned at this job are irreplaceable. To this day, I still hold a fearless mindset toward anything considered hard work to “just get it done,” regardless of the challenges or the heat along the way. I think that is what my Dad would be most proud of. Fast forward to my time at Morris Bank, I was honored to receive one of the prestigious Code BLUE awards for executing with Excellence in 2016, and my favorite part of this accomplishment are the words etched on the glass… “Consider it Done!”

Q: What led you to a career in banking?
A: During college, I knew early that I wanted to pursue a career in banking and finance. I also had the wonderful privilege of working in many areas of The Citizens Bank of Swainsboro toward the end of my college years, and I knew this was exactly what I wanted to do. This provided the initial training and foundation for me in banking. The experiences were incomparable, and my former coworkers are considered friends and family to me to this day. I then worked with Powell & Company, a local bank auditing firm out of Statesboro, GA, after graduating college, and little did I know at the time that this would be the start of my career in compliance.

Q: What are you most proud of accomplishing professionally?
A: I could reference any one of my professional accomplishments over the past 20 years that would be noteworthy of success to a banking/compliance career that include, in part, various certifications in the BSA/AML, financial crimes and fraud areas as well as certifications in regulatory compliance management. Completing the Georgia Banking School as well as GBA Compliance School as well as the ABA National Compliance School are great accomplishments that deserve mention. However, I am most proud of serving as Compliance Officer with Morris Bank under the Code BLUE values that continue to drive our overall success by hustling with a smile. I look forward to celebrating 10 years with Morris Bank in February 2022.

Q: If you could thank someone for becoming the professional you are today, who would it be and why?
A: I would have to thank God for every aspect of my life, starting with my wonderful parents, grandparents, and family that shaped me into the man that I am today. Obviously, my wife and boys are a continuous motivation to me, and I am grateful for my family. I hope and pray that we will be just as effective in instilling a solid work ethic into our children as they grow closer to becoming young men.

Q: What would someone be surprised to learn about you?
A: I love working and playing outside, whether hunting, fishing, waterskiing, or cutting grass. Anything outdoors is alright with me! My wife, Jill, and I have two amazing boys. Jackson is 11 years old, and Jeb is 6 years old, and they keep us very busy with school, sports, motorcycles, ATVs, etc. It is never a dull moment around my home. I will also say that both of our boys have their own miraculous birth stories, which I will be glad to share with you on another occasion. My wife is also an Atlanta Braves fan, so that’s pretty much the only channel that we need at home. We watch a lot of Braves baseball on TV, and we make it to a few live games during the year too. I have been very active in our local church, Antioch, where I have served as Deacon and Treasurer since 2008. However, in more recent years, I have been blessed by God with the opportunity to supply or fill in at various churches as a lay speaker.