NEA Women in Business: Neely Camp

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 102 views 

Neely Camp
First National Bank, VP of Corporate Strategy and Communication

Residence: Paragould
Education: B.A., history, Arkansas State University; M.Ed., higher education administration, University of Arkansas
Professional background: In addition to her role as VP of Corporate Strategy and Communication, Camp serves as the director on the First National Bank Board of Directors. She helped lead the first ever Arkansas State Police Foundation Golf Tournament.

What was your dream job as kid and why?

When I was a kid, I wanted to do so many different things. I loved the thought of helping others and planning events. I also knew I wanted a family, and I wanted to stay close to home. I knew that a career which allowed me to work with people and which offered a diverse schedule would be gratifying to me.

What has been the most fulfilling moment of your career so far?

The most fulfilling moment of my career was when I was asked to serve as the first female director of First National Bank’s Board of Directors. I was overwhelmed and excited by the opportunity to serve in this capacity. Representation of women is important to me, and I work hard to ensure that the decisions we make have a positive impact in our community.

Neely Camp.

How do you spend your time away from work? What are your hobbies?

My children and family are my focus when I am away from my job. I love spending time with my husband Britt and our children Jack and Izzy-Kate. Our kids are 8 and 10, and they keep us on our toes. We love going to the lake and the beach. From fishing at our farm to family movie nights, we love being together. If and when I find time for “Neely,” I love to read and have time with my girl gang.

What’s the last good book you read?

I loved the books “Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens and “Everything is Figureoutable” by Marie Forleo.

Can you share what you have learned about your business from the COVID-19 pandemic?

First National Bank, just like all businesses, has had to learn to pivot and adapt to the ever-changing environment. You can never be too prepared and must always expect the unexpected. Complacency can never be an option. Most importantly, we learned that we can rise to meet challenges, even completely unexpected ones, and serve our customers well even as we adapt on the fly. Everything really is figure-outable!

Of all the mentors in your professional career, who has been the most influential and why?

My career has been filled with great leaders, but the most influential person would have to be my stepfather, Bill Brewer. He is someone who has always been supportive of me and given me the opportunity to learn and grow. My background was not in banking and my path is definitely non-traditional. He has encouraged me to use my skills and experiences to transition into the world of community banking.

What’s the next big personal or career challenge you plan to take on?

Raising citizens and growing the First National Bank brand throughout Arkansas. Being a mother is my favorite and most important job. I love what I do and appreciate the opportunity to work for First National Bank and the communities that we serve. This organization is my family, and I am 100% committed to contributing in any way needed.

What character traits do you feel have benefited you in your success?

Honesty, kindness and willingness to help are very important to success in all areas of life. My organizational skills have also served me well in my career. I love planning and organizing big events and thinking of all the little details. Being a part of a team and taking care of customers is what it is all about. Serving in community organizations locally and throughout Arkansas will always be something that I love.

What advice would you give young women who are at the beginning of their careers?

Take chances and go for it and allow the future to unfold. I am a type A personality. My initial career path was in higher education administration. I had a plan for my career, but I did not end up where I expected that I would, and I am not sorry at all. Wonderful opportunities have presented themselves to me at just the right time, and I am so thankful for First National Bank’s willingness to invest in me. I have been very pleasantly surprised with the direction that my work life has taken, and it would not have turned out this way if I had not been willing to diverge from my expected career path.

What is something distinctive that people would be surprised to know about you?

I was the commencement speaker at my college graduation. Those that know me will tell you that I really prefer organizing details from behind the scenes, it’s something that has grown on me but I think there are people that would be surprised by that.

What’s your favorite app at the moment?

I love the First National Bank FirstMobile App. I use it all the time in my everyday life. Working and balancing life is hard at times. This app simplifies mine.

If you have a bucket list, what are the top three things on it?

I do have a bucket list and my top three things are to raise my children, travel more, and make the most of my minutes.

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