Primis All‑Stars

We champion passionate employees to build relationships,
creating better value for customers and shareholders alike. Finally a bank that truly gets it — and gets it right.

The Executive Team

We’re committed to technology, new digital solutions, a “wow” customer experience, ambitious leadership, and building a brand that’s innovative, inviting, and primed to grow.

  • Dennis J. Zember Jr.

    President & CEO

    Dennis doesn’t fit the typical banker stereotype. He thinks—and acts—way outside the suit-and-tie-wearing baseline, and his gregarious charm and good humor feel more down home than multibillion dollar banker.  As a child, his mom incessantly reminded him he could be anything he wanted, but that maybe lawyer or doctor would be better than race car driver or musician… After graduating from college, Dennis was a public accountant and then worked in the private sector for ten years before landing at Ameris Bank.  He initially served as CFO before becoming CEO, helping to take the bank from $1 billion to nearly $17 billion in total assets.  In that successful span, Dennis led the company in dozens of acquisitions, strategic development and leadership concepts that drove the company’s ability to quickly integrate acquired organizations or develop new ideas rapidly into needle movers.  As CEO, Dennis is very aware of the company’s culture […]

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  • Matthew Switzer

    EVP, Chief Financial Officer

    Matthew Switzer brings an intensity to both life and work. That’s probably why he holds not one but two degrees: Chemical Engineering from the University of Virginia and an MBA from UNC Chapel Hill. That intensity also allowed him to lead a banking team at […]

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  • Barry Almond

    EVP, Chief Retail Officer

    For someone who believes that “success is found in the gray” Barry Almond is very clear about why he loves working at Primis, “Primis is an outstanding corporate citizen and innovative solution finder that continually searches for new ways to improve financial services, as well […]

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  • Bruce Brockwell

    EVP, Head of Commercial Banking

    Meet Bruce Brockwell: 50% banker, 50% rock star, 100% fair and fun loving. A Virginia Tech graduate with equal love for Tom Petty and financial spreadsheets, Bruce rules our commercial banking house and brings a little music to our ears when it comes to veering […]

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  • John Colantoni

    EVP, Chief Risk Officer

    Everyone loves a good curveball. For John Colantoni, his curveball was transitioning from being a senior auditor at the FDIC for 24 years to becoming a banker. Some would say these things are at odds: the person regulating the banks moves to the other side. […]

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  • Ann-Stanton Gore

    EVP, Chief Marketing Officer

    Ann-Stanton is our resident brand and marketing guru. But don’t let her title fool you; she diligently uses both sides of her brain with a close eye on the numbers and the creative output. Primis is not just her day job but also her happy […]

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  • Marie Leibson

    EVP, Chief Credit Officer

    For someone who has a plaque that reads, “It is what it is,” Marie’s career path has been a testament to this reality in the banking industry. Winding her path  through community and regional banks across Virginia, her long tenure in the industry means that […]

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  • G. Cody Sheflett, Jr.

    EVP, Chief Information Officer

    Before making his move to IT, Cody was steeped in customer service working in the hospitality industry. Before that, he was learning important life lessons from naval officers, university professors, and significant personal mentors. Even before that, he was learning problem solving and sharpening hands-on […]

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  • Tyler Stafford

    Primis EVP, Panacea Financial CEO & Co-Founder

    Tyler has always had a drive for personal improvement and growth. So much so, his favorite quote when encouraging himself and others is by Bertrand Piccard who says “If we want to innovate and achieve impossible goals, we have to understand that the only obstacle […]

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  • Stephen Weber

    EVP, Chief Strategy Officer

    Hailing from five generations of bankers, you could say that Stephen was born into this world. As a child he dabbled in sports and even the arts, but he eventually came back to his roots and graduated cum laude from the University of Tennessee with […]

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  • Susan Williamson

    EVP, Director of Regulatory Relations

    A person who is staunchly devoted to family, it’s no surprise that Susan Williamson has been loyal to the banking world, as she’s been steeped in compliance for the past two decades in various roles at community banks across Virginia. It’s also no wonder that […]

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  • Cheryl Wood

    EVP, Chief Administrative Officer

    Cheryl joined Primis back in 2000 and has given the bulk of her career to this bank—learning the ins and outs and deeply investing in its people and operations. She has graced many departments with her talents over the years but currently oversees corporate investor […]

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The Board of Directors

You’ll appreciate the confidence, care, and expertise that our Board of Directors brings to the table.

  • W. Rand Cook

    Chairman of the Board of Directors

    What happens when you combine the steady tempo and easy-going attitude of a bluegrass musician, the no nonsense pragmatism of a banker, and the sharp wit of an attorney? Well… you get William Rand Cook (or “Randy” as we call him). An enigma-or perhaps just […]

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  • Dennis J. Zember, Jr.

    President and Chief Executive Officer, Primis Financial Corp.

    Dennis doesn’t fit the typical banker stereotype. He thinks—and acts—way outside the suit-and-tie-wearing baseline, and his gregarious charm and good humor feel more down home than multibillion dollar banker.  As a child, his mom incessantly reminded him he could be anything he wanted, but that […]

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  • John Biagas

    Board of Directors

    From an early age, John F. Biagas knew he wanted to be a CEO. While other kids were dreaming about elite sports, he saw himself at the head of an elite executive table and started training to be an electrician by the time he stepped […]

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  • Robert Claggett

    Board of Directors

    Robert has been practicing law for nearly 55 years and was the former president and CEO of a community bank for over 30 years. His passion for law began when his father, who was a practicing attorney, took him to the law library at the […]

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  • Deborah Diaz

    Board of Directors

    If most people had nine lives, they still wouldn’t have the impressive roster of titles and accolades that follow Deborah Diaz around. Her glowing resume includes Chief Technology Officer at NASA and Chief Information Officer for Science and Technology at the Department of Homeland Security— […]

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  • John Eggemeyer

    Board of Directors

    John M. Eggemeyer isn’t just a proponent of community banks, he has literally invested his career in them. As Founder and Managing Principal of Castle Creek® Capital, LLC he enables community banks across the country to thrive, having invested over a billion dollars in their […]

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  • Fred “Skipper” Garrett III

    Board of Directors

    Affectionately dubbed “Skipper” by his friends and family, Fred L. Garrett III is a marina owner and fifth generation oyster planter who has spent his entire life learning about the landscape surrounding his native Rappahannock River in Essex County, VA. An avid boater and salt […]

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  • Eric Johnson

    Board of Directors

    Board members not only lend broad experience and strategic thinking to Primis, they are also able to step back and see the forest through the trees. Eric Alan Johnson is no exception. For over 45 years, he’s been in the real estate business, most recently […]

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  • Dr. Allen Jones, Jr.

    Board of Directors

    Dr. Jones is described by his team members as ambitious and full of energy—and one would need to simply ooze these attributes in order to soar at his level of accomplishment. Not only is he a renowned physical therapist, a successful business owner, and a […]

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  • Charles Kabbash

    Board of Directors

    Charles Kabbash, or “Charlie” as we call him, has devoted the last 50 years of his life to real estate. He’s seen and done it all: from buying and selling, to financing, to renting and land lording; and has helped everyday people realize their dreams […]

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