Mr. LaRoe and First Green Bank have also been honored with numerous industry, sustainability and business awards, celebrating their commitment to Central Florida’s economic well-being and expanding sustainability practices.

From 2010-2018, First Green Bank has been named a best place to work, a sustainable leader, and a growing company to watch by various award organizations. In the year leading up to its acquisition, First Green Bank won awards such as USGBC LEEDership Award, Inc. 5000, Real Lenders Impact Awards, Downtown Orlando Partnership Golden Bricks, Orlando Sentinel’s Top 100 Companies, OBJ Golden 100, OBJ Top Banks, OBJ Corporate Philanthropy Awards, South Florida Good to Great, and many more.

Every First Green Bank building was eco-friendly, boasting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certifications. First Green Bank was also a member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV), Sierra Club, U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce, U.S. Green Building Council, and the U.N. Natural Capital Declaration.

Additionally, Mr. LaRoe has been recognized for his personal commitment to excellence in sustainable business. He is a founding member of the North American chapter of GABV and was elected to the organization’s board of directors for a three-year term from 2014-2017. Mr. LaRoe was selected by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer to chair the Sustainability Committee for the Green Works Orlando Task Force in 2017, where he promoted better environmental initiatives throughout the city, such as energy-efficient buildings, green transportation, water conservation and overall livability. Mr. LaRoe himself is a LEED Accredited Professional. His family residence is solar-powered, and his mountain home became the first residential LEED Platinum in North Carolina.

Working to promote positive change in society, Mr. LaRoe has dedicated many hours to community service and spearheaded new initiatives that continue to make a large impact on people and their families. For example, Mr. LaRoe has been honored by the Lake County Board of County Commissioners with a certificate of appreciation for the many hours of service he volunteered to Lake County and its citizens.

Mr. LaRoe is an active board member for the Brain Injury Association of Florida. Inspired by Mr. LaRoe’s wife, a physician who suffered a brain injury during a cycling accident and found relief through her artwork, the couple founded the Art of Medicine Foundation. Through the foundation, Mr. LaRoe and his wife, Cindy, made it their mission to raise money for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of traumatic brain injuries. In 2015, LaRoe played an integral role helping host the first ever Art of Medicine Gala and has continued the bi-annual event to raise funds for brain injury research.

Individually, Mr. LaRoe has been recognized by his community for his outstanding leadership. Over the years, Mr. LaRoe has been recognized as: 2016 Central Florida Top 100 Leaders; 2015 OBJ CEO of the Year; 2015 Orlando Magazine’s 50 Most Powerful People; and he received the 2015 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. He also made the 2017 Seminole 100 list, 2014 Gator 100 list and was a 2015 Gator 100 nominee.

Ken LaRoe Is ICBA’s Community Banker Of The Year 2018

Oct 1, 2018

Ken LaRoe Is ICBA’s Community Banker Of The Year 2018

Ken LaRoe Is ICBA’s Community Banker of the Year


October 1, 2018         By: Payment Week

The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) today announced Ken LaRoe, founder and chairman of First GREEN Bank in Orlando, Fla., as its 2018 National Community Banker of the Year. This annual ICBA award recognizes the exceptional work and commitment of individual community bank employees and their dedication to local communities.

“We are proud to honor Ken LaRoe, an exceptional leader and visionary, as ICBA’s 2018 National Community Banker of the Year,” ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey said. “Ken’s passion and commitment to his community is exemplified by his adherence to value-based business practices and conscientious civic service. He has earned the respect and admiration of his colleagues and serves as a shining example of community banking at its finest.”

A committed environmentalist, LaRoe founded the bank in 2009 with a mission to promote business that is financially, environmentally and socially responsible. “Ken passionately prioritizes these three pillars over profits,” said Jaclyn Bertrand who nominated LaRoe for the award. “Not only that, but his bank serves as a role model to other businesses in the community through its volunteer work, community donations and eco-friendly initiatives.”

Beyond his environmentalist activities and priorities, LaRoe and his wife, Cindy, also started the Art of Medicine Foundation in Orlando to benefit people suffering from traumatic brain injuries. The organization has raised more than $700,000 to fund research. LaRoe was recently selected by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer to chair the Green Works Orlando Task Force. He is also a founding member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values North American Chapter.

LaRoe’s philosophy of giving back is also conveyed through his staff’s commitment to local volunteer efforts. Together, they donate more than 3,500 volunteer hours annually.

In addition to LaRoe being named ICBA’s National Community Banker of the Year, ICBA named three regional winners. This year’s regional award recipients are:

  • East: Scott McComb, chairman, president and CEO, Heartland Bank, Whitehall, Ohio
  • Central: Josh Rowland, CEO and vice chairman, Lead Bank, Kansas City, Mo.
  • West: Stanley Wilmoth, president and CEO, Heritage Bank of Nevada, Reno, Nev.


LaRoe and the regional winners will be recognized at the 2019 ICBA Community Banking LIVE® national convention in Nashville, Tenn. The winners will also be featured in the December issue of Independent Banker®, ICBA’s award-winning monthly publication and the number-one source of community banking news for ICBA members.

This is the fifth annual contest the association has held for the Community Banker of the Year award. SHAZAM is the sponsor. Every year, ICBA seeks nominations from community bankers, customers and community leaders to identify the most passionate, innovative and savvy community bankers for this prestigious award.

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