A Role Model in Her Community: Regions Bank Branch Manager Honored for Making an Impact on Others

Georgia branch leader receives the Lee Ann Petty Heart of Service Award, Regions Bank’s highest honor for community involvement.
May 1, 2024 11:00 AM ET

By Candace Higginbotham | April 24, 2024

VILLA RICA, Ga., May 1, 2024 /3BL/ - – Regions Bank on Wednesday announced Kascia Polk, manager of Regions’ Villa Rica, Georgia, branch, has been awarded the 2024 Lee Ann Petty Heart of Service Award, Regions’ highest honor for community involvement.

Regions Chairman, President and CEO John Turner presented the award to Polk at the annual Chairman’s Club celebration, which honors the bank’s top performers.

“I appreciate all you do to make a positive difference and for shining a light on our core values,” Turner said as he announced Polk as this year’s winner. “Your story is an example for all of us. Our mission is to make life better for the people and places we serve, and you put that mission into action in how you serve others every day. That is the spirit of community involvement championed by Lee Ann Petty throughout her time with Regions, and that spirit continues to drive how we put others first.”

The Lee Ann Petty Heart of Service Award, launched last year, recognizes a Regions associate whose extraordinary volunteerism and outreach make a lasting impact in ways that are consistent with the bank’s core values, including Do What is Right and Put People First.

Longtime Regions associate Lee Ann Petty served as volunteer services coordinator in Regions’ Community Affairs division. She passed away on Dec. 30, 2020, following a courageous battle against cancer. Her commitment to serving others continues to inspire thousands of Regions associates.

Regions is proud to honor Kascia Polk with the award that pays tribute to Petty’s legacy. From teaching financial wellness classes and serving in leadership positions in civic organizations to founding and operating a nonprofit to enrich the lives of underserved schoolchildren – Polk has dedicated her life to serving others. Her recognition coincides with National Volunteer Week, a time to recognize those who lend their time, talent and voice to make a difference in their communities.

“I’m honored and humbled to be recognized with the Lee Ann Petty Heart of Service Award,” Polk said. “I personally believe helping others is the key to happiness and fulfillment in life, and we must all work together to lift up those in our communities in need.”

Polk has been with Regions for seven years, but as this heartfelt video illustrates, her service to the community began years before that. She was always studious, and education was very important throughout her life. She was active with her children’s school and was a member of the PTA. Naturally curious with an adventurous spirit, she and her children frequently took weekend exploration trips together.

In 2012, during a particularly challenging time in her life, she recognized the need to give back. She decided to make those Saturday educational excursions available to more children – especially those whose families may not have the resources to make those kinds of trips. Beyond the Front Porch began serving Douglas County students in August 2012.

Beyond the Front Porch is thriving today, serving hundreds of K-12 students on free or reduced lunch each year. Many have gone on to attend college; one is currently attending MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The organization has taken students to destinations in Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee, including the Tennessee Aquarium, the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and the U.S. Space & Rocket Center.

“Kascia is a trusted colleague and friend who works tirelessly to build a better community,” said Mia Hubbard, consumer banking executive for Regions in Georgia and the Carolinas. Hubbard noted how Polk shares the same energy and enthusiasm with her customers and colleagues.

“Kascia is very passionate about financial wellness, and she is the catalyst for helping more members of the community by sharing advice and guidance through our financial education seminars and webinars,” Hubbard continued. “As a result, we’ve seen customers wait to be assisted by Kascia because they know she genuinely cares about their financial wellbeing. She’s a great example for someone who may not have had this modeled in their home. Kascia reflects the values of servant leadership and gives others hope and reason to believe that they can meet their life goals.”

Polk also serves as a trustee for the Douglas County Chamber of Commerce. According to Sara Ray, CEO and president of the chamber, Polk is an essential part of the community.

“Kascia is not the type of person who is going to support initiatives or projects for self-serving purposes,” Ray said. “She genuinely is leaning in to help fill the needs of our community.”

“Kascia has a true servant leader’s heart,” added Gina Sian, head of the Making Life Better Institute® programs. “The selection committee for this year’s award was deeply moved and inspired by her leadership and persistent determination. We celebrate her work in building and growing Beyond the Front Porch, and now in teaching other communities to follow suit. She showed us the impact that one person can have with an idea that fills a need, a drive to see past barriers, and a heart that moves others to action.”

In recognition of Polk’s service, Regions is making a $2,500 donation to Beyond the Front Porch. She will receive a commemorative plaque and five bonus vacation days – to take time for herself after dedicating so much time to others.

About Regions Financial Corporation
Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE:RF), with $155 billion in assets, is a member of the S&P 500 Index and is one of the nation’s largest full-service providers of consumer and commercial banking, wealth management, and mortgage products and services. Regions serves customers across the South, Midwest and Texas, and through its subsidiary, Regions Bank, operates approximately 1,250 banking offices and more than 2,000 ATMs. Regions Bank is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additional information about Regions and its full line of products and services can be found at www.regions.com.