This year OED is recognizing and celebrating Frederick County’s young professionals who are leaders in their industry, give back to the community and add significant value to their company and its culture. Join us as we get to know our Top 50 Under 40.
Chris Clemons, 39
Vice President- Commercial Banking Group Manager
8 E Second St, Suite 203, Frederick
Chris is a lifelong resident of Frederick County and 18-year veteran of the Community Banking Industry. His banking career started as a part-time teller while attending UMBC and is currently Vice President and Commercial Banking Manager at Woodsboro Bank. He has been teaching finance, economics and banking classes in both the MBA and MHA programs at the Mount since 2012.
What is your greatest professional accomplishment?
I worked to build a PPP process from scratch. We were one of the first banks in Maryland to originate loans. We helped over 250 local businesses retain over 2,500 jobs during the worst of the pandemic.
Name one award you are most proud to have received.
In January 2021, I received the "One Woodsboro" award. Each year, this is awarded to two employees in the bank that best exemplify the Bank's values. This essentially is the bank's "Employee of the year" award. Coming off a challenging year, this award meant the world to me.
What is your experience with volunteering and civic engagement?
To me, my biggest contribution in civic leadership is over 10 years as an instructor at the Mount and FCC. I've dedicated 1-2 nights a week through a sincere desire to help develop and assist the next generation of leaders. I value the connections I've made through this work.
I assist in several service projects each year. I serve as treasurer for the FCC Foundation and am a member of the Rotary Club of Frederick. I also assist Mission of Mercy and Leadership Frederick County. Finally, I host events and financial literacy classes for Frederick Health.
What was your first job?
I was a cashier at a Chinese restaurant.
What do you like to do for fun in Frederick County?
I enjoy Frederick's rich craft brewing/distilling community. There's variety and a lot of wonderful personalities involved in the industry.
Who has influenced you most when it comes to how you approach your work and why?
My Grandfather, Jim Richardson. He was a business leader, entrepreneur and loving mentor. Without him, I would not be the person I am today.
What is your favorite leadership book and why?
"First, Break All the Rules" by Gallup. This is a wonderful read that helps one understand the concept of talents, versus skills. I personally have changed my management approach after reading it.
What behavior or personality trait do you most attribute to your success and why?
Adaptability. Working for a smaller company forces one to perform many duties; the ability to adapt and juggle those tasks has been essential throughout my career.