Rodney Hawkins has succeeded Johnny McCaleb as Executive Vice President and Chief Audit Executive for Simmons Bank. Hawkins joined Simmons Bank in 2021 with responsibility for the oversight of Simmons’ risk-based Internal Audit function, and has worked closely with Johnny McCaleb as part of a designed transition. McCaleb will continue to lend his expertise in an advisory capacity before his planned retirement in December 2022.
“Johnny and Rodney have done a remarkable job working together over the past nine months to ensure a smooth changeover as part of this planned transition,” said George Makris, Jr., chairman and CEO of Simmons Bank. “With three decades of Fortune 500, public-company experience and a highly regarded track record, Rodney is well-positioned to lead our audit team and build upon the success that we have gained under Johnny’s leadership.”
Recently awarded the Arkansas Business Lifetime Achievement Award in Accounting, McCaleb joined Simmons Bank in 2016 after a 40-year career in public accounting. He was promoted to audit partner at Ernst & Young in 1990 and served as managing partner of the Little Rock office from 2003 through 2005. In 2005, he joined BKD as an audit partner and served a four-year term on the firm’s Accounting & Auditing Committee and a three-year term on the firm’s Governing Board.
“Johnny has distinguished himself as an outstanding leader during his 45-year storied career, always displaying a tireless work ethic and a commitment to maintaining the highest principles and integrity beyond reproach,” added Makris. “We’re very pleased that Johnny will continue to lend his expertise in an advisory capacity until his retirement.”
Prior to joining Simmons Bank, Hawkins was the Chief Compliance Officer and Vice President of Internal Audit at Windstream Communications. A certified public accountant, Hawkins earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accounting, with honors, from the University of Georgia. He is a member of the Institute of Internal Auditors, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, serves on the Board of Directors for the American Cancer Society (Arkansas) and is an External Advisory Board member for the University of Arkansas Sam M. Walton College’s Business Integrity Leadership Initiative.