Commencement Bank has announced some key changes in its leadership, including the appointment of John Manolides as its new president and chief operating officer.

Manolides, a founding bank member and former executive vice president and chief credit officer, will join the bank's board of directors next year. The move was made to ensure a smooth transition upon the retirement of CEO Hal Russell; while Russell will continue to operate as CEO and has no plans to retire in 2018, he felt it was time to begin the succession process.

“As I get closer to retirement, I have every confidence in my successor and the next level of bank management,” he said. “John Manolides has been with the Bank since inception in 2006 and it is my honor to appoint him as President & Chief Operating Officer. On behalf of the Board of Directors, we also welcome him as the newest member of our Board,” said Russell.

The bank also promoted former senior vice president and chief financial officer Tom Dhamers to executive vice president. Dhamers will retain his CEO post.

“Tom Dhamers has been a strong member of the Executive Management Team since he assumed his position through the merger with Thurston First Bank. His expertise has helped navigate the Bank through its first merger and I am pleased to acknowledge his contribution by appointing him as Executive Vice President,” said Russell.