Patrick M. Ryan, chair of First Bank, and Donald D. Somma, president & CEO of First Hope Bank
Banking / Financial

2 Recognized for Outstanding Service to NJ’s Banking Industry

The New Jersey Bankers Association (NJBankers) has announced the recipients of its 2024 Excellence in Banking Award. The award recognizes NJBankers members who have displayed long-term outstanding service to the New Jersey banking industry.

This year’s honorees are Patrick M. Ryan, chair of First Bank, and Donald D. Somma, president & CEO of First Hope Bank.

“Pat and Don are two exceptional individuals who have made an incredible impact on the industry and paved the way for future generations of bankers,” said Michael Affuso, NJBankers president & CEO. “Thanks to leaders like them, our industry is strong and resilient and is doing great work in our communities.”

Ryan is the owner of North Buffalo Advisors, LLC and P. Ryan Consulting, LLC, both financial and real estate investment advisory companies. He was the president and CEO of Yardville National Bank and its holding company from 1991 through its sale to PNC Corporation in 2007. Ryan has over 54 years of banking experience working for Yardville National Bank, Howard Savings Bank, Marine Midland Bank, Manufacturers Hanover, and M&T Bank.

Ryan joined the board of First Bank in 2011. He is the father of Patrick L. Ryan, First Bank’s president and CEO. In his capacity as First Bank’s chairman of the board, Ryan brings extensive knowledge of the commercial banking industry, gained over 54 years of experience, to the governance and leadership of the Board of Directors at First Bank.

Somma currently serves as the president and CEO of First Hope Bank, NA, a 112-year strong Federally chartered commercial bank, headquartered in Hope. He began his New Jersey banking career 41 years ago at Howard Savings Bank, moving on to Peoples Bank in 1989, before joining First Hope in 1993 as the vice president of lending operations.

Over Somma’s 30 plus years with First Hope, his responsibilities steadily increased, culminating in his current role as president and CEO in 2016. He has further served First Hope as a director since 2012, currently holding the title of vice chairman of the board. Somma was previously the president of First Hope Mortgages, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of the bank.

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