People of Etowah – Andrew H. Roberts


Name: Andrew H. Roberts

Where were you born and raised?

“I was born in Jasper, Alabama. My father worked with Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company so we lived in many different places (e.g. Brazil and Ohio) when I was very young.  My family moved to Gadsden when I was five years old.”

What is your occupation?

“I am a Vice President and a Senior Commercial Lender with The Southern Bank Company in Gadsden. I also hold a real estate brokers license with Kessler Land Agency where I deal with primarily commercial real estate transactions, and I am responsible for leasing much of the medical office space at Gadsden Regional Medical Center.”

Tell us about your family and pets.

“I have been married to my wife Kathy for 24 years.  She is currently employed as a 6th grade social studies teacher at Gadsden Middle School. She was honored this year as the “Middle School Teacher of the Year” for the Gadsden City School system. My daughter Anne is entering the 11th grade at Gadsden City High School where she currently serves as a Titan Ambassador. Anne is also a member of the Titan band and performs in the Titan dance line. I have triplet sons: John Hiller, Everett and William that are entering the 7th grade at Gadsden Middle School.  The boys enjoy playing basketball for the middle school and competitive soccer.  With so many people in our house we have room for only one pet, a black labrador retriever named Jack.”

What school or schools have you attended?

“I am a product of the Gadsden City School system. I graduated from Eura Brown Elementary School, Disque Middle School (now Gadsden Middle School) and Gadsden High School in 1987. I went on to Birmingham-Southern College where I earned a bachelor of science degree (BS) while majoring in economics and minoring in history. After college I attended Jacksonville State University where I received a masters degree in business administration (MBA). I acquired my real estate broker’s license in 1994 and earned my designation as a certified commercial investment member (CCIM) in 2008.”

What do you like to do in your free time?

“I find that I do not have very much free time these days. I try to enjoy my family while they are still around. Whatever the family activity might be at the time is what I try to do in my spare time. I’m guessing that there will be plenty of time to golf, hunt, fish or do whatever once the kids are not around anymore.”

What would you say is your greatest accomplishment?

“My greatest accomplishment up to this point in my life is that I have been married to Kathy for 24 years, and we have four healthy children that are smart and well mannered.”

Name the one person that has been the most influential in your life. Why?

“If I had to pick the one person that has been most influential in my life, it would be my father Jack Roberts. As I was growing up, he taught me that working hard is a necessity in order to achieve anything of value in this life. As I have grown older, he has taught me that material possessions are not what matter in this world, it is the relationships and time we spend with those around us that will be remembered after we are gone.”

To what do you credit your success?

“I credit my success to the grace of God. He has given me so many things that I have not earned or deserved. I have been very fortunate to have two loving parents that continually sacrificed their time and resources in order for me to have opportunities that many others never had. I have a friend/mentor/father figure in Mickey Kessler that took me on as a partner and taught me how to become a successful businessman. And now I have a friend in Gates Little that has given me a tremendous opportunity at The Southern Bank Company.”

Are you involved in any service organizations?

“I am currently an elder at Rainbow Presbyterian Church. I also serve on the church’s Youth Ministry Team. I am a member of the Gadsden Kiwanis Club and a board member of the local Red Cross. I am a past board member of Big Brothers Big Sisters and Young Life. I have mentored students at Striplin Elementary School and was a board member/football coach for the Gadsden City Titan Youth Football Team.”

What is your favorite thing about this community?

“My favorite thing about this community is that the people seem to genuinely care about others around them. Its citizens donate their time, efforts and money in order to help their neighbors in need.  Our local churches, the Big Oak Ranch, Eagle Rock Boys Ranch, Thirteenth Place, Way of the Cross, Etowah Pregnancy Testing Center and the Love Center are a few of the local organizations that I am familiar with that serve the needs of many in our community. Many people in our community are also involved in several national and regional organizations that serve those around us. The United Way, the Red Cross, Young Life, Big Brothers Big Sisters, the Salvation Army and Kiwanis Club are examples of some of these organizations. All of the individuals that volunteer with any of these organizations in our area go over and beyond the call of duty to serve those in our community.”

What would you like to see change in the community?

“I would like to see our community become more unified. Our community needs more industry/jobs in this area. I would like to see all of our local municipalities along with our county officials band together in order to promote the entire county and recruit new industry to the area.”

What are three words that describe you?

“Get it done. I know this is not the way that I am supposed to answer this question, but it is the best way for me to describe myself.  I hate to sit around and be idle. I always want to get started on a task as soon as possible. I do not like to be distracted when I am working on a task. And I never want to quit before I have completed the project.”

What is something surprising that many do not know about you?

“The fact that many times I get teary-eyed over silly, insignificant things.”

What is your favorite quote?

“Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.”~ Albert Einstein.”

What is on your bucket list?

“I would like to travel in Europe and the Holy Land. I would like to serve on mission trips abroad.”

What is your hidden talent?

“For a man, I am unusually good with babies and small children.”

If a movie were made about your life, who would you want to play you?

“I love Robert Duvall, Robert DeNiro, Al Pacino, Morgan Freeman, Kevin Spacey, John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and Denzel Washington. However, if I had to pick one actor that is close to my age I would choose Kevin Costner. In the movies that I have seen starring Costner, he has seemed believable, likable and down to earth. I like to think that I portray these qualities also.”

What advice would you give yourself as a child?

“Don’t be afraid to fail. Ask questions. Explore.  Get outside of your comfort zone. Learn from your mistakes. Find out what you love to do and you will figure out a way to make a living doing it. Put the interests and needs of others ahead of your own.”

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