Women in Business 2013: Debbie Fakalata, First Community Bank

Debbie Fakalata

Executive vice president and chief operating officer, First Community Bank, 438 First St., Santa Rosa, 95401; 707-636-9000; fcbconnect.com

Age: 54

Residence: Santa Rosa

Professional background: Finance/CFO/COO

Education: California State University Sacramento

Staff: I currently have 13 direct reports and 53 employees reporting under me.

company: I have been a Community Bank COO & CFO for the majority of my career. While I enjoy overseeing finance, budgets, operations, branches, HR and I.T., my passion is working with and mentoring others to help them to be successful in their jobs. In 2004, I was approached with the unique opportunity be a part of a new start-up, First Community Bank. Many of the people that I hired to be a part of the founding team are still happily working at the bank and have progressed in their careers. The success of First Community Bank is largely due to these people and many others who have joined us since, making sure we deliver the best service possible to our clients. It’s a great bank.

Is there a major accomplishment in the past year or so that you would like to share?: The bank experienced an extended period of time where the CEO was unable to fulfill her duties. I assumed the interim role and, together with the other two executive officers, was able to keep the bank running smoothly and keep directors informed while handling some tough issues during challenging economic times.

What is the achievement you are most proud of?: Being able to build and maintain a successful career with no regrets. My husband passed away when my two children were under the age of 9 and I was grateful that I was established in a career with the ability to financially, physically and emotionally support my family. 

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