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Community Development

Our Mission Statement

In 1995, a group of friends got together on a back porch near Hattiesburg, MS and discussed the possibility of creating a bank that would not only take care of financial needs, but also take care of the individual as a whole - leading up to what we know now as The First. Now, that dream has grown from a back porch to communities all over South Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and Georgia.. Because The First is more than a bank, it continuously allows friends to build relationships while taking care of business one customer at a time!

The First is committed to giving back to the communities where we serve to ensure a brighter future for everyone. We strive both as a company and as individuals to improve the quality of life in our communities. The First delivers banking and credit needs to each community, including low- and moderate-income individuals. This is achieved through grants and initiatives, affordable housing, community development lending, investments, and our employees who volunteer their time and talents in each of the communities we serve. 


Corporate Social Responsibility

We are committed to our employees, customers, and communities. Our corporate social responsibility report reflects our positive impact on the communities we serve. The report showcases our extensive employee volunteerism, community lending and investments, charitable giving, governance and environmental initiatives.

Click here for the 2022 CSR Report

The First CRA Public File

The First is pleased to provide information for public inspection under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). Interested parties can review the data provided and produce hard copy of documents as needed. If you need more details send us a message at

Enacted by Congress in 1977 with the intention of encouraging depository institutions to help meet the credit needs of their surrounding communities particularly low and moderate income neighborhoods. The CRA requires federal regulators to assess the record of each institution in helping to fulfill its obligations to the community. This record will then be used in evaluating certain criteria, including their activities related to community development.

Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) Notice

Under the Federal Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), the Federal Reserve Board (Board) evaluates our record of helping to meet the credit needs of this community consistent with safe and sound operations. The Board also takes this record into account when deciding on certain applications submitted by us.

Your involvement is encouraged.

You are entitled to certain information about our operations and our performance under the CRA, including, for example, information about our branches, such as their location and services provided at them; the public section of our most recent CRA Performance Evaluation, prepared by the OCC; and comments received from the public relating to assessment area needs and opportunities, as well as our responses to those comments. You may review this information today by reviewing the public file which is located at

At least 30 days before the beginning of each quarter, the Federal Reserve System publishes a list of the banks that are scheduled for CRA examination by the Federal Reserve Bank in that quarter. This list is available from Erien O. Terry, Assistant Vice President of Consumer Compliance at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, 1000 Peachtree Street, NE, Atlanta, GA 30309. You may send written comments about our performance in helping to meet community credit needs to The First Bank – CRA Officer, PO Box 15549, Hattiesburg, MS 39404 and  and to Erien O. Terry, the   Assistant Vice President of Consumer Compliance at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, 1000 Peachtree Street, NE, Atlanta, GA 30309. Your letter, together with any response by us, will be considered by the Federal Reserve System in evaluating our CRA performance and may be made public.

You may ask to look at any comments received by the Federal Reserve Bank. You may also request from the Federal Reserve Bank an announcement of our applications covered by the CRA filed with the Federal Reserve Bank. We are an affiliate of The First Bankshares, Inc.; a bank holding company. You may request from the Assistant Vice President - Applications, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta an announcement of applications covered by the CRA filed by bank holding companies.

For the most recent CRA data available, please select the link below.  Once you arrive at the FFIEC website, you will need to choose the information you wish to review and enter the institution name or Respondent ID.  The First Bank. Respondent ID  is 22949.


HMDA Disclosure Statements

For the most recent HMDA data available, please select the link below.  Once you arrive at the FFIEC website, you will need to choose the information you wish to review and enter the institution name or LEI.  The First Bank. Legal Entity Identifier (LEI)  is 5493008OE5JXNTGWD962.

The First Community Development Mission Statement
It is a primary mission of The First,  to promote community development in the communities we serve through the provision of financial products and services to residents and to businesses located there, and to provide development services in conjunction with its provision of financial products and services.

CDFI logo

In 2010, The First became a certified Community Development Financial Institution. CDFI's play an important role in generating economic growth and opportunity in low-income communities by providing access to financial products and services for local residents and businesses. 

Bank On | National Account Standards 2023-2024 Approved

We are proud that our TheFirst Step Checking is certified as meeting the CFE Fund’s Bank On National Account Standards for 2021-2022.
Being a part of the national Bank On movement means working with 75+ local coalitions to connect consumers to low-cost, low-fee, no-overdraft financial products!

If you need more details and assistance please email