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St. Pete green-focused bank wins major certification, adds execs

  • By Jim Stinson
  • | 5:00 p.m. November 14, 2023
  • | 2 Free Articles Remaining!
Climate First Bank completed sustainable retrofits to its Winter Park branch, at 1150 S. Orlando Ave.
Climate First Bank completed sustainable retrofits to its Winter Park branch, at 1150 S. Orlando Ave.
Courtesy image
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St. Pete-based Climate First Bank, the world's first FDIC-insured community bank founded to combat the climate crisis, won a LEED platinum certification — the highest LEED rating — for its Winter Park branch, it announced in a news release Tuesday.

The certification, given by the U.S. Green Building Council, stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. LEED certifications are given to buildings that are designed to curb energy and water usage.

Climate First Bank also says it has expanded its executive team.

The bank hired Ron Strand-Sorrell as executive vice president, chief compliance officer and risk officer. With more than 40 years in banking and 25 years in compliance and risk management, Strand-Sorrell has held leadership positions with Axiom Bank, MVB Bank and others.

Climate First Bank also hired Corey Jones as vice president of commercial banking. As an alumnus of the University of North Florida, Jones comes with 17 years of banking industry experience, the bank says.

Digital banker Norman Ruiz will helm Climate First Bank's online banking platforms and smartphone apps. Ruiz is currently attending Valencia College and pursuing a degree in information technology.

Climate First Bank offers banking services and "places a special emphasis on non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and businesses committed to sustainability. Eco-conscious customers will find dedicated loan options for solar photovoltaic (PV), energy retrofits and infrastructure to help combat the climate crisis."



Jim Stinson

Jim Stinson is the Business Observer's Tampa Bay business reporter and editor, having previously written about business and policy in Washington, D.C.; Rochester, New York; Gary, Indiana; and Daytona Beach. He attended Boston University for business and Indiana University for journalism.

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