Hayes accepted the Rotary gavel from outgoing president Michael Traynor, publisher of the Savannah Morning News. Traynor led the club through its Centennial year helping the club to raise funds for local non-profit grants and a playground that will be built in Forsyth Park by year end for children of all abilities.
South State Bank is the new name for The Savannah Bank. Hayes has served as president of The Savannah Bank since December 2008.
Joining Hayes in leading the club through its 101st year in Savannah are Secretary/Treasurer Nina Gompels, Sergeant at Arms Tim Walmsley and 2014-2015 Board of Directors members Dale Critz Jr., Fran Kaminsky, Jamie McCurry, John Helmken, Louisa Abbot, Marjorie Young, Phoenicia Miracle, Stratton Leopold, Swann Seiler, Trey Cook, Tripp Turner and Trip Tollison.
“It is an honor to be part of such a wonderful club whose members constantly define service above self,” Hayes said. “ Mike Traynor did an incredible job as president and I wish to thank him for all he has done for the club and our community. We will do our best to continue and expand those efforts.”
Hayes joined The Savannah Bank in July 2006 as its executive vice president and became its president and director in July 2008. He began his banking career with Fidelity National Bank in January 1995 and joined SunTrust Bank in Savannah as its vice president and a private banker in August 1998, rising to the position of senior vice president and head of the Private Wealth Department in June 2002.
He earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in finance from the University of Georgia in 1994 and a Masters of Business Administration from Georgia Southern University in 2003.
He has held leadership positions with the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce, Step up Savannah, Savannah Sports Council, Hospice Savannah, Senior Citizens Inc, Red Cross, Historic Savannah Foundation, St. Johns Church, Senior Citizens and Light the Night. He also is a graduate of Leadership Savannah and Leadership Georgia.
As publisher of the Morning News, outgoing president Traynor also leads savannahnow.com, Bluffton Today, Savannah Magazine, Effingham Now and Bryan County Now. He currently serves as chairman of the United Way of the Coastal Empire, Vice-Chairman of the Savannah Community Foundation, a board member of Union Mission, past chair of the Step Up Savannah poverty reduction initiative and a board member for the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce.
During his year as president, the club also awarded 10 grants to local non-profits as part of its Century of Service Awards program; erected a historical marker recognizing the founders and the impact of the club at Bull and Liberty streets; collected money from members to support the Annual Fund at the Rotary Foundation, including financial support for the eradication of Polio worldwide; increased net membership. The club also was honored by Rotary District 6920 with a Gold Award for its accomplishments;
Traynor will now turn his attention to the Savannah Community Foundation, assuming the role of its chairman July 1.
The Rotary Club of Savannah was organized Jan. 12, 1914 and has 213 members. Meetings are held most Mondays from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., at the DeSoto Hilton Hotel, 15 E. Liberty Street.
Rotary Club of Savannah
P.O. Box 11105
Savannah, GA 31412