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January 23, 2024

Kennebunk Savings Bank CEO announces retirement, and his successor

Courtesy / Kennebunk Savings Former President and CEO Bradford C. Paige, left, and his recently announced successor, Lex Meagher.

The longtime president and CEO of Kennebunk Savings Bank, Bradford Paige, will retire at the end of this year.

Paige has stepped down as president but will retain his CEO duties through December, according to a news release. Lex Meagher, senior executive vice president and chief credit officer, is taking on the role of president and will become CEO upon Paige’s retirement.

“Lex’s professional background, his performance, and accomplishments at Kennebunk Savings, his understanding and commitment to our culture and priorities, and his natural leadership abilities form a strong base from which to lead the organization into the future,” said Paige.

Meagher is an attorney and member of the Maine State Bar Association. He joined Kennebunk Savings in 2011 as associate general counsel after serving as a law clerk at both the Maine Superior and Maine Supreme Judicial courts. 

He was promoted to general counsel and compliance officer at Kennebunk Savings in 2013, a position in which he served until his promotion to senior commercial credit officer in 2019. In 2022, he was promoted to chief credit officer and added senior executive vice president to his title in February 2023.

Meagher graduated from the University of Massachusetts and received his law degree from the University of New Hampshire School of Law. He is also a member of the board for Habitat for Humanity of Greater Portland and a former board president.

“We are fortunate to have a management team that is focused on developing internal candidates for senior and executive roles, including that of president and CEO,” said Matthew Chase, Kennebunk Savings’ board chair.

“Lex has knowledge of the banking industry, accompanied by strong ethics and a dedication to our communities. He has big shoes to fill, but a strong senior management team and employee base backing him. The board and I have every confidence he’s up to the task.”

A long legacy 

Paige joined Kennebunk Savings as a commercial loan officer in 1998. He was later promoted to commercial and retail services positions before becoming chief financial officer. In 2009, amid the national banking crisis, he was named president and CEO.

Under Paige’s leadership, Kennebunk Savings has grown its assets from $806 million to $1.81 billion, expanded its network in York County and opened a new market along seacoast New Hampshire.

In his leadership role, Paige has also advanced many philanthropic and advocacy efforts. He continued to advance the Community Promise, anchored by the bank’s donation of 10% of its annual after-tax earnings to nonprofits in its communities. The program has provided over $20 million for nonprofits since its inception 30 years ago.

In 2016, Paige furthered the bank’s efforts by creating the Spotlight Fund. Its signature causes include substance-use disorder prevention and recovery, for which Paige has been a fierce advocate. He helped the bank achieve a recovery-friendly workplace certification in New Hampshire and in Maine, indicating that Kennebunk Savings promotes a safe and healthy environment that recognizes recovery as a strength.

Over the years, Paige has been active with local nonprofits including the United Way of York County, Southern Maine Health Care, Wells Rotary Club, Wells-Ogunquit Community Connections Mentoring Program, York SHIPs mentoring program, Kennebunk-Kennebunkport Little League and the Child Abuse Prevention Council of York County. He also has served as chair of the Maine Bankers Association and on the American Bankers Association board of directors.

“Brad has had a strong influence on the financial strength of Kennebunk Savings and certainly on the strength of its culture,” said Meagher. “On a personal level, Brad has been the single greatest influence in my professional career. His mentorship and support, along with his example as the leader of this institution, have been invaluable. I plan to extract every last bit of wisdom from him during this transition.”

Kennebunk Savings is headquartered in Kennebunk. The bank operates 18 branches and offices in York County and coastal New Hampshire. With assets of $1.81 billion, Kennebunk Savings is No. 8 among the largest Maine-based banks, according to the 2024 Mainebiz Book of Lists.

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