Community Connection

UCB believes a community is not simply a place to work or live, but a place where families are raised and lifelong relationships are formed. For those reasons, we believe giving back is more than a service, it's a commitment.



APRIL 2022
Whitley City, KY - Michael Laxton, President/CEO of United Cumberland Bank, on behalf of the Board of Directors, today announced the promotions of five employees. Laxton said that Michael Bush has been named to Executive Vice President / Chief Credit Officer while Whitney Roark was named Vice President / Chief Financial Officer. Ryan Duncan was promoted to Vice President / IT Manager; Crystal Ledbetter, Asst. Vice President / BSA Compliance Officer / Risk Manager and Jonathan Kidd was named Asst. Vice President / Loan Operations Manager.

Mr. Bush joined UCB in late 2013 and brought more than a dozen years of commercial lending experience. As Chief Credit Officer, he oversees the loan operations of the bank. He earned a BS in Accounting and Management with a minor in Economics, from the University of Virginia. He also completed the Graduate School of Banking at LSU. He and wife, Rebecca, have two grown children and reside in Somerset, KY.

Mrs. Roark, joined UCB in 2011, she is experienced in Compliance and worked several years as Assistant Chief Financial Officer. She is a 2011 graduate of Western Kentucky University where she received a BS in Accounting. In 2016 she earned her MBA at University of the Cumberlands. Mrs. Roark is active in the community and especially enjoys participating in the McCreary County Public Library programs with her daughter. She and her husband, Mark, have one daughter and reside in Whitley City, KY.

Mr. Kidd has served as Risk Manager for several years with UCB and will now serve as the bank's Loan Operations Manager. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and has been with United Cumberland Bank since 2012. He resides in Whitley City, with his wife and two children.

Mr. Duncan joined UCB in 2013. As the bank's IT Manager, he oversees and manages the bank's IT department and electronic services. He is an active member of Bethlehem Baptist Church where he helps with the computer and audio setup. He and his wife, Stephanie, have two children and reside in the Scott County, TN community.

Mrs. Ledbetter has been with UCB since 2008. She is an ICBA Certified BSA/AML Professional, a KBA General Banking School Graduate and 2020 Leadership McCreary Graduate. She is also active in a number of local civic and charitable organizations. She serves on the board for the McCreary Tourism Commission, Treasurer for the McCreary County Chamber of Commerce and Treasurer for the McCreary Fest Committee. She also has been active for several years with Relay For Life in McCreary County. She and her husband, Josh, reside in Whitley City, KY.

"Each of these individuals are tremendous leaders and have been great assets to our team," said Michael Laxton, President and CEO of UCB. "They bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to their respective positions and will continue to do a great job in assisting our team toward reaching our goals."

United Cumberland Bank, founded in 1906, is a community bank with a specialty in rural community development and reinvestment. UCB serves communities in both Kentucky and Tennessee with branch locations throughout Somerset, Whitley City and Pine Knot, KY; Oneida, Huntsville and Jacksboro TN.



SOMERSET, KENTUCKY — United Cumberland Bank President and CEO, Jim Johnson, announced Wednesday that Matthew Salmons has been named Vice President, Commercial Loan Manager and Market Leader for Pulaski County. Salmons will work primarily out of the Somerset, Ky market, providing close proximity to the region’s recent and continuously evolving economic development surge. He will work closely with Chief Credit Officer Michael Bush and serve as an important point of contact for commercial clientele.

“We’ve seen continued growth not only in our Pulaski Market, but in our commercial lending department as a whole. Matt has a robust and specialized breadth of knowledge and experience to navigate these objectives with thoughtful leadership and expertise. Our commitment to the Pulaski County community remains firm and our growing team in the region reflects that.” Johnson stated on the addition.

In addition to commercial loan management, Salmons will work jointly with Residential Loan Officer and Vice President Steve Bray to comprehensively serve the community’s ever-increasing demand for mortgage and real estate opportunities.

“It’s no secret Somerset is experiencing a boom in economic development which promotes growth in commercial, residential and consumer sectors. The addition of Matt gives us an incredibly well-rounded and talented lending team in Somerset to effectively service the needs of the growing community.” Johnson stated.

Civic and regional leaders, along with local business developers, have recently announced numerous commercial projects and expansions in Pulaski County, bringing thousands of employment opportunities to the area. Community banks are an important part of bringing such projects to fruition with their abundant levels of community financial support and unique skill sets in fulfilling the needs of residents and citizens impacted by these opportunities.

“I’m incredibly optimistic as I look to the future with United Cumberland Bank. UCB has a vastly unique culture and value set. This organization has made its priorities clear in its continued investment in its communities and customer experience. I admire the work of the entire UCB family, and I couldn’t be happier to be part of delivering on those priorities right here in my hometown of Somerset, Kentucky.” Salmons said of joining the company.

United Cumberland Bank, founded in 1906, is a community bank with a specialty in rural community development and reinvestment. UCB serves communities in both Kentucky and Tennessee with branch locations throughout Somerset, Whitley City and Pine Knot, KY; Oneida, Huntsville and Jacksboro TN.


If you are a TN business owner, Tennessee has developed a couple of programs to benefit agriculture related businesses, including forestry, for businesses in Tennessee. If you, or some of your customers or suppliers are in Tennessee, please share this information. UCB, subject to credit approval, would be willing to fund the matching requirement, if any, for these programs. The program contact that we have is Andy Holt, Director of Business Development, Phone: 615-946-2509. Email: You may find out more information by clicking Funding Opportunities (

United Cumberland Bank will work with the business owner and the Tennessee program personnel to achieve the best outcomes possible. Please let us know how we may help and feel free to share this information to those you feel may be interested. UCB Contact: Michael J. Bush, VP-Chief Credit Officer,, Phone: 606-376-0045


JULY 2021

Somerset, KY - United Cumberland Bank along with Southern Title co-sponsored the monthly luncheon for the Somerset-Lake Cumberland Realtors. With over 50 in attendance, the luncheon was held at The Center for Rural Development. Keynote speakers were Kentucky Association of Realtors 2021 President Charles Hinkley and KYR CEO Steven Stevens. Food was catered by Sassy Spoons. A successful live auction was held, donating funds to RPAC (Realtor® Political Action Committee). Additional money was raised from the table centerpieces donated by the sponsors. Realtor® Membership luncheons are fun, festive, and a great networking opportunity for Realtor®/Business Partner members, their website is ( . United Cumberland Bank was honored to co-sponsor this event.

Whitley City, KY - United Cumberland Bank Chairman David Winchester announces the retirements of Jim Johnson and Vickie Johnson, effective December 31, 2021. Together this husband-and-wife team have been pillars in our local community with over 78 years of combined banking experience.

Jim Johnson has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of United Cumberland Bank since 2017, as well as President of First Trust & Savings Bank prior to its merger with Bank of McCreary County in 2014. His leadership started many years ago in the loan department where he eventually worked as Senior Lender and was the architect of United Cumberland Bank’s successful loan growth policies. He has been a leader both in the community and within the bank over his 41-year career.

Vickie Johnson has served as the Chief Financial Officer of United Cumberland Bank, and previously Bank of McCreary County, for 37 years. She is also President of the McCreary Bankshares Holding Company, a role she will retain for a time as part of the transition plan. Her leadership through various mergers and with the Employee Stock Ownership Plan has been crucial to the financial performance and stability of United Cumberland Bank.

When speaking about their retirement decisions, Jim Johnson stated, “Our number one goal has been to handle this process correctly and with the best interest of our customers and employees in mind. We have been honored to serve the bank for many years and are proud of the accomplishments of our staff during this period.” On the topic of their successors, Vickie Johnson said, “It was also important to us to be available to assist the incoming management team in any way we can so that this transition is seamless for all involved. We want to be transparent with our customers about changes, including this one.” As part of the succession plan, both will continue their role as members of the Board of Directors.

To continue United Cumberland Bank’s traditions of innovation, excellent customer service, safety and soundness, and community involvement, the Board of Directors is pleased to announce the next phase of leadership for the bank. Michael Laxton will be named President and Chief Executive Officer as of January 1, 2022. Michael has more than 16 years of banking experience with United Cumberland Bank and has been working closely with management and the Board in preparation for this transition. In addition to proven management skills, Michael brings with him a strong background in information technology, which is becoming ever more important in the banking industry. Asked about his new role, Laxton says, “This is a tremendous challenge and opportunity that I look forward to accepting. We’ve got a great team at UCB, and I can’t wait to work even closer with them and our customers.”

Whitney Roark will be the bank’s Chief Financial Officer as of January 1, 2022. Whitney has been with United Cumberland Bank for 12 years and has experience in many vital areas. Her education and training include a Master of Business Administration among her many qualifications that make her a natural fit for this role. Most recently Whitney has worked side by side with Vickie Johnson as Assistant Chief Financial Officer, a fact that will ensure a smooth transition in the upcoming year. Roark expressed her enthusiasm about the promotion and stated, “Working with Vickie for the last several years has given me the confidence to take on this position. I am excited to work with the wonderful team we have here and build on the momentum and strong business values of UCB.”

Jim Johnson and Vickie Johnson have left their marks on the more than 115-year history of United Cumberland Bank. Their dedicated service has put the bank in a strong position, and the Board of Directors is confident that the new management team will continue to build on the bank’s tradition of excellence.


APRIL 2021

Whitley City, KY – Jim Johnson, President/CEO of United Cumberland Bank is pleased to announce that the Board of Directors recently approved three promotions. Whitney Roark, Jonathan Kidd and Trey Ball were all promoted to Assistant Vice Presidents.

Whitney Roark has worked at United Cumberland Bank since January of 2012. She is a 2011 graduate of Western Kentucky University and a 2016 graduate of University of the Cumberlands. She currently serves as Assistant Chief Financial Officer. Whitney and her husband, Mark, along with their daughter, Harper, reside in Whitley City.”

Jonathan Kidd is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and has been with United Cumberland Bank since 2012. He currently serves as the bank’s Risk Manager. He resides in Whitley City with his wife and two children.

Trey Ball has been employed with United Cumberland Bank since 2014 where he currently serves as a Consumer Loan Officer. Trey is a graduate of Lindsey Wilson College and University of the Cumberlands and resides in Whitley City, KY along with his wife, Amber, and their three children.

“All three are tremendous leaders and have been great assets to our team, said Jim Johnson, President and CEO of UCB. They bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to their respective positions and will continue to do a great job in assisting our team toward reaching our goals.”

COVID-19 Response (Updated 3/20/20)

Our number one priority is and will always be the health and safety of our customers and employees. In order to continue to provide the best customer experience possible during this time, United Cumberland Bank will transition to drive-thru services only for in-person transactions beginning March 23th. This change will be for all locations.

Our bank will remain fully operational and can still assist you with loan, account opening and safety deposit box needs by appointment. If you would like to schedule an appointment for these or any other services, please call your local branch. These measures will remain in place until further notice and we will communicate any adjustments.

We are committed to continuing to provide our services in a way that is most convenient for our customers and community.  As a reminder, our ATMs, as well as online and mobile banking platforms offer many services to suit your banking needs. Check your balance, transfer funds, deposit checks and more, 24/7. If you have any questions about online or mobile banking, one of our friendly representatives would be happy to help.

At this time, our hours of operation will remain the same at all locations, including cut-off times.  We may expand drive-thru hours if needed based on demand.  These hours can be found on our website at

We appreciate your understanding and look forward to continuing to meet your banking needs.


 United Cumberland Bank was proud to come together with a host of local businesses and individuals to help secure the funding to purchase 356 new winter coats for children in need in our community. United Cumberland Bank agreed to be a major sponsor of funding in the purchase of the coats if additional funding could be secured through other community partners. In less than 24 hours, a total of $6,110 was raised and in a matter of hours, hundreds of coats were on their way to be delivered to students in need. We are beyond thankful to be a part of a community who stands together when others are in need. Thank you to each of the following businesses and individuals for your efforts in making this possible!

 Presenting Sponsor: United Cumberland Bank

 Major Sponsors: Highland Telephone Cooperative, Outdoor Venture Corporation

 Supporting Sponsors:

 Lumber King, Roxanne Shook, Tonya Chitwood, Rachel Jones, Bill Taylor/ Bluegrass Oxygen, Eric and Renee Haynes, Bill and Jennifer Simpson, Tony and Paula Crowley/ Crowley's Country Cafe Phil, Judy Chaney, Tracie Goodman, Trey Ball, Mindy Coffey, Teresa Boyatt, Kim and Lee Braden, Barry Braden, Jim and Vickie Johnson, Becky Coffey, Lisa Ball, Michael Bush, Ashley Jones, Rayma Daugherty, Whitney Tucker, Leslie Tucker, Kelli Chaney.




 -UCB Team takes 3rd place in the OVC Charity Golf Scramble

UCB sponsored the first hole and took home 3rd place in the OVC Charity Golf Scramble in Stearns KY on 9/16. UCB Team players were Evan Kidd, Ryan Strunk (UCB employee), Sam Strunk (UCB Board Member) and Russell Jones. 

 -Supporting the Family Service Center of Community Health of East TN

Sharon Ayers, Kim Berry and Doris Wilson, employees of UCB Jacksboro Branch cooked up some awesome homemade chili, that was combined and entered in the Hats-N-Hawgs Chili and Wing Cook-Off event held on 9/21 at The Stables in LaFollette. UCB sponsored a table at the event and serving up the chili were Jacksboro bankers Sharon Ayers, Kim Berry, John Branam and Rayma Daugherty. CHET Family Services Center Community Health of East Tennessee, Inc. is a local agency providing health, education, social and community services for Campbell and surrounding counties. 

 -UCB enters team in the 3rd Annual Clays for Children Sporting Clays Tournament

Hosted by the Office of District Attorney General Jared Effler, the 3rd Annual Clays for Children Sporting Clays Tournament was held 9/28 at the Chilhowie Sportsman’s Club in Maryville.  The annual fundraiser provides much needed funds to the children’s centers of Campbell, Fentress, Scott, and Union counties.  The centers provide services to abused and neglected children and serve as an integral part in the prosecution of the perpetrators of these heinous crimes. Each year, the centers provide services to hundreds of children in the communities they serve, and the proceeds from this event will help ensure that these services are not interrupted. Team UCB employees were Myke Baird, Michael Laxton, Justin Wright and Stephen Vanover.




 -UCB Jacksboro Branch Host Campbell Chamber of Commerce Coffee Connection

Great morning on 10/18 with generous people; attendees donated canned good to Open Arms Ministry Food Pantry while attending the UCB Chamber Coffee Connection. Employees of the Jacksboro branch prepared a country breakfast along with the assistance for a couple of items provided by McDonalds. Several guests received door prizes and give-a-ways.  The Chamber Coffee provides the business community a great networking opportunity. Non-perishable food items will continue to be collected thru 11/15 for the local food pantry.

 -Celebrating One Year in Somerset

UCB Somerset Branch celebrated their one-year anniversary on 10/5, with refreshments, cornhole, activities and door prizes.  The branch is committed to provide full-service community banking to those who live and work in Pulaski County. The employees of the branch are truly a part of the community participating in area events and are active members of the Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce.

 -No Business One-Hundred - Annual Event

A 100-mile loop course with over 15,085 feet of ascent that traverses through the heart of the Big South Fork National River & Recreation Area out of Stearns, KY took place on 10/13.  UCB bankers Emily King, Lena Sumner, Leslie Tucker and Whitney Tucker volunteered their time with registration and checking in runners for this challenging event.

 -Employees raise money for the American Heart Association

Hundreds of people walked the streets of downtown Somerset, KY on 10/18 in the annual fundraiser. UCB emloyees raised money that help contribute to the near $150,000 raised for the event according to Joey Maggard, executive director of the American Heart Association's regional chapter based in Lexington. UCB employees partaking in the walk were Steve Bray, Kelli Chaney, Leslie Tucker and Whitney Tucker.

 -Congratulations to UCB banker, Ryan Strunk for finishing 1st place in his age group

At the 6th Annual Rogers Scholars 5k Glow Run and Walk on 10/19 held in Somerset, KY.  Other UCB employees that participated in the event were bankers, Kelli Chaney, Leslie Tucker and Whitney Tucker.

 -UCB brings home the People’s Choice Award at “Fall on the Mall”

A huge crowd attended the 2nd Annual Fall on the Mall held in Scott County, TN on 10/20 with well over 500 children participating.  United Cumberland Bank took home the People’s Choice Award at the Trunk-or-Treat event with our “The Price Is Right” themed truck. Special thanks to Patricia Hall, UCB Oneida branch employee for her work and participation at the event!

 -Huntsville Elementary School is getting a New Playground

UCB employee Sonni Brooke Letner presented Lisa Hamilton, Principal and Abby Young, Special Education teacher with a $1,000 donation to help fund their new playground.

 -Middle-College Scholarships for Campbell County High School Students

UCB along with other Campbell County friends and supporters were recognized by the Roane State Foundation at a recent dinner held at Clairhill Farms for providing scholarships to Campbell County High School Students. These scholarships will assist students that qualify to enroll in Middle-College at Roane State Community College.  Attending the dinner on behalf of the bank are Jacksboro Bankers Sharon Ayers & Rayma Daugherty. A UCB donation check for $2,500 was presented to the foundation.

 -October is Domestic Abuse Awareness Month

Scott County branches of UCB are supporting the cause by displaying purple ribbons purchased from the Scott County Shelter Society. The shelter located near Oneida, TN is a domestic violence service providing help for people dealing with domestic abuse.