Executive Leadership

Steve Stone
President, Chief Executive Officer 
Steve Stone serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of CoastalSouth Bancshares, Inc. and Coastal States Bank.  As CEO, Steve led the recapitalization of CoastalSouth in 2017 and is responsible for executing the business strategy that he and Tony Valduga implemented when they joined the bank.  That strategy is focused on strong organic growth through CSB’s community banking line of business and specialized lending groups combined with mergers and acquisitions.  Prior to joining Coastal States in 2017, he previously served as Chief Strategy Officer and General Counsel at Community & Southern Bank. Steve is responsible for mergers and acquisitions, strategic planning and special projects, and investor relations. Steve was formerly an attorney in the Financial Services and Products Group at the law firm of Alston & Bird, LLP in Atlanta, Georgia. While at Alston & Bird, Steve’s practice was focused primarily on public and private mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance transactions in the financial services industry. Steve received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Virginia and received his law degree from the Washington College of Law at The American University, cum laude.

Tony Valduga
Chief Financial Officer, Chief Operating Officer
Tony serves as the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer of CoastalSouth Bancshares, Inc. and Coastal States Bank. Prior to joining CSB in 2017, Tony was the CFO of Community & Southern Holdings, Inc. and Community & Southern Bank. Tony led the finance function to include treasury, financial profitability and analysis, shared-loss accounting and reporting, regulatory & investor reporting, tax and overall general accounting functions. Tony helped lead efforts around all M&A, to include the successful acquisition and integration of 3 failed banks purchased out of receivership from the FDIC, 3 branch acquisitions, and 3 open bank acquisitions. Prior to joining Community & Southern, Tony was with PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP for 11 years. Tony was a leader within the Firm’s Banking and Capital Markets practice and had expertise in advising both public and private financial institutions on a wide range of issues including mergers & acquisitions, public offerings and filings, FDIC-assisted transaction accounting, integration and compliance, and other complex finance and accounting related matters. Tony earned his Bachelor of Science in Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Brad Turner
Chief Credit Officer
Brad serves as Chief Credit Officer of Coastal States Bank. Prior to joining the Bank in 2017, Brad’s extensive banking career has included several executive leadership roles specializing in Government Guaranteed Lending. His banking background also includes commercial underwriting and risk. Brad holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial relations from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Larry DesPres
Chief Information Officer
Larry's professional background includes serving as a Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for several community banks throughout the Southeast. Larry’s experience includes over 30 years building high performance IT teams, robust IT infrastructures and Disaster Recovery / Business Continuance (DR/BC) programs. He has also worked extensively in both IT Audit and enterprise Vendor Management. Larry holds a degree from Northern Michigan University in Industrial Electronics, is a veteran of the US Air Force and is active in Georgia High School sports (GHSA) as a basketball and volleyball referee.

Gary Dowell 
Atlanta Regional President
Gary joined Coastal States Bank in 2018 and is responsible for building and leading our commercial banking group in Atlanta, GA. Gary brings 32 years of banking experience to his role with Coastal States Bank. After 19 years of working in North Carolina, Gary moved to Atlanta in 2006 with RBC Bank. Subsequently, Gary worked with PNC Bank and most recently with State Bank and Trust where he served as Atlanta Region President for five years. Gary is a native of Winston-Salem, N.C. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from East Carolina University.  An active member of the Atlanta community, he serves on the Board of Directors for Inspiritus and the Advisory Council for Action Ministries. He has actively served with the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Cobb Chamber of Commerce and Cobb Edge. 

Tim Haug
Director of Mortgage Banker Finance
Tim brings 25 years of Industry experience to his role as Director Mortgage Banker Finance. Tim joined Coastal States Bank in 2014 to manage and grow the warehouse lending team. Prior to joining Coastal States Bank, Tim held various roles in the mortgage industry, including Finance, Accounting, Servicing and Operations. Tim holds a Master’s in Business Administration as well as a Bachelor of Business Administration, Banking and Finance from the University of North Florida where he was a member of the golf program.

Lauren Hemby
Chief Accounting Officer
Prior to joining Coastal States Bank in 2017, Lauren worked in various roles at both Community & Southern Bank and SunTrust Bank, where she managed the financial aspects of mergers and acquisitions activity and led a variety of other accounting, finance, and regulatory areas. Lauren also worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP, where she served clients in the firm’s financial services assurance practice, including banks, insurance companies, real estate investors, and employee benefit plans. She holds both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Accountancy from Wake Forest University.

Diana McDougall
Lowcountry Regional  President
Diana has served on the management team for Coastal States Bank since the Bank’s inception in 2004. As the leader of the Retail Banking team, her responsibilities include retail and business banking, business development, retail sales and branch administration. Diana has more than 30 years of experience in and around the banking industry. She serves as Treasurer of the Zonta Club of Hilton Head as and is an active member of other community organizations.

Pete O'Hern
Government Guaranteed Lending
National Sales Manager
Pete serves as National Sales Manager for the Government Guaranteed Lending Team at Coastal States Bank. With over 25 years’ experience in SBA Lending, and prior to joining the bank in 2017, he held sales management roles at CIT, Square 1 Bank and a few others. Prior to sales management, Pete was a Business Development Officer with CIT, Amresco and Heller Financial. Pete holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration/finance from St. Bonaventure University.

Brian Smith
Savannah Regional President
Brian brings 19 years of industry experience to his position as Regional President of Savannah at Coastal States Bank.  Brian specializes in leading the Savannah Market in commercial lending and treasury services.  Brian is an active member of the community and has served on the boards of multiple organizations including Interfaith Hospitality Network, Community Housing Service Authority, Savannah Tech Advisory Board, and The Next Generation Advisory Board. Brian is a graduate of both Leadership Savannah and Leadership Georgia and enjoys outdoor activities with his family in his spare time.

Ric Spiehs
President, Chief Executive Officer 
Coastal States Mortgage
Ric returned to Coastal States Bank in 2018 to serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of Coastal States Mortgage, the Bank’s wholly-owned subsidiary. With over 15 years of experience in the mortgage industry, in various sales and management roles at local mortgage companies and national retail banks. Ric’s vast experience in mortgage sales management has provided leadership through the ever-changing landscape of the mortgage lending business. He has served as president of the Mortgage Lender’s Association of Hilton Head. Ric holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of South Carolina and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Temple University.

Ellen Tressler
Director of Project Management and Operational Strategy
Ellen serves as the Director of Project Management and Operational Strategy at Coastal States Bank. Before joining the leadership team in 2018, she held various senior and executive positions in the financial industry most recently at the Bank of the Ozarks, Community & Southern Bank, and Regions Financial. Ellen’s primary focus in recent years has been on merger & acquisition activity and complex enterprise wide projects. She also has a broad array of experience in the information technology, mortgage, operations, and compliance areas.