Florence, Ala. – Friday, August 31, 2012 – Two Bank Independent team members recently graduated from the Alabama Banking School, a three-year banking program sponsored by the Alabama Bankers Association. Chris Estave and Dustin Rhodes—team members at the Florence Bank Independent on Pine Street—were two of 35 bankers who graduated Friday, July 27, 2012, after completing three years of study that included one week per year spent at the Alabama Banking School and an intensive curriculum on bank related courses. The courses included six home study problems and exams at the conclusion of the first and second years of study, as well as a BankExec program in the third year that allowed students to operate a bank through internet simulation exercises. Students received instruction from Alabama Bankers, University of South Alabama faculty, academicians, attorneys and consultants. “At Bank Independent, it’s important for us to support our local team members to help them achieve their goals, whether that be personal or career goals.” explains Bank Independent President Macke Mauldin. “We know Chris and Dustin worked hard to achieve their goals and graduate from Alabama Banking School. We’re proud of their achievement and also proud to see them excel in what they do.” A native of Florence, AL, Chris is a Mortgage Lending Officer at the local Bank Independent, where he is also active in the Shoals Association of Realtors and the Shoals Homebuilders Association. He is a graduate of the University of North Alabama where he received his degree in Finance. Dustin is a Muscle Shoals native and a Sales Officer at Bank Independent, where he is also active in Business Networking International and the Florence Civitan. He is a graduate of the University of North Alabama, receiving his degree in Economics. For more information about the Alabama School of Banking, visit http://www.alabamabankers.org/.