Estrabrook to chair Hancock Holding Company

By WLOX Staff

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Veteran Gulf Coast business and civic leader James B. "Jim" Estabrook, Jr., will assume responsibilities as Chairman of the Board of Hancock Holding Company, the parent of Hancock Bank.

Estabrook becomes Hancock Holding Company chairman on July 6, 2009, as former Hancock chairman and retired chief executive officer George A. Schloegel begins his term as Gulfport's new mayor.

Estabrook is the president of Pascagoula-based Estabrook Motor Company -- which his father started in 1951 -- as well as Estabrook Automotive and several other automotive related enterprises. Estabrook served on the board of directors of the Pascagoula Moss Point Bank before joining the Hancock Holding Company board during PMP's 1982 merger with Hancock Bank. During almost 30 years with Hancock Bank, he has worked closely with the company's senior leaders on numerous corporate management committees. He currently chairs the Hancock Holding Company Nominating & Corporate Governance Committee, is a permanent Loan Oversight Committee director, and recently served on the Asset Liability Committee. Additionally, Estabrook has held numerous executive leadership positions with Gulf Coast business, economic, and service organizations for four decades.

"Jim Estabrook has played an integral role in Hancock's growth across the region. With his fellow Hancock directors, he has helped ensure the company's financial stability through some of the best and the most challenging times in our national and regional history. He has been actively involved in sustaining the company's 110-year-old legacy of strength, stability, and integrity. We believe his business acumen, exemplary community service, and devotion to the people of this area will remain invaluable as he guides Hancock into a new era of opportunity," said Hancock Holding Company President and CEO Carl J. Chaney.

Estabrook is past chairman of the Ford Zone Dealer Council and currently vice chairman of the Southern Quality Ford Dealer Advertising Fund. He is also currently the secretary and treasurer and a director of Versant Holding, Inc. A past director of the Mississippi Automobile Dealers Association and past president of the Mississippi Automobile Dealers Association Services, he has been a Ford dealer since 1967 and has received distinguished achievement and customer satisfaction awards for multiple years from Ford Motor Company, Nissan Motor Company, and Toyota Motor Company.

"We are very fortunate that our Hancock directors are some of the Gulf South's most accomplished business men and women. Jim Estabrook's record of achievement reflects his exceptional ability to balance visionary business success with strong community commitment. His chairmanship will help perpetuate the core values that have kept Hancock strong since 1899," said CEO and Chief Operating Officer John M. Hairston.

A former president of the Jackson County New Car Dealers Association, Estabrook is also a past director of the Jackson County Economic Development Foundation, Jackson County Chamber of Commerce, and the Boys and Girls Club. He is a past president of the Kiwanis Club of Pascagoula, was chair of the American Heart Association Heart Fund, and is a member of the Pascagoula Rotary Club. The past co-chair of the Pascagoula Municipal Separate School District Capital Improvement Survey Committee, Estabrook was also chairman of the Jackson County chamber's educational issues committee.

A graduate of Pascagoula High School, Estabrook holds a bachelor of science degree from the University of South Alabama. He and his wife, Marcy Estabrook, have two sons, Reed and Drew, both of whom are active in management of the family enterprise

Hancock Holding earned the distinction of being one of America's 100 Most Trustworthy Companies and is the corporate parent of the 110-year-old Hancock Bank

Information provided by Hancock Holding.

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