Alabama Academy of Honor

George Alexander LeMaistre

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 1978.

George Alexander LeMaistre, lawyer and banker, was born in Lockhard, Alabama, September 8, 1911, and was the son of John Wesley and Edith (McLeod) Lemaistre. He attended the University of Michigan from 1927 to 1930 and then attended the University of Alabama where his bachelor of laws degree in 1933. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1941 to 1945 attaining the rank of lieutenant commander.

He was a member of the firm of LeMaistre, Clement and Gewin from 1933 to 1960. From 1955 to 1960 he also was Referee in Bankruptcy. In 1960 he became president and chief executive officer of the City National Bank of Tuscaloosa, and in 1971 he became chairman of the bank's board of directors and continued to serve as chief executive officer. In 1973 he became a director of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in Washington, D.C. and in June, 1977, he became chairman of the agency. Starting in 1939, he was the adjunct professor of law at the University of Alabama.

Mr. LeMaistre was active in community and civic affairs. He was president of the Alabama Coalition for Better Education, 1968 to 1969; president of the Alabama Heart Association, Tuscaloosa Unit, 1971 to 1973 and member of the Board of Directors from 1972 to 1973; member of the Abvisory Council of the Southwest Area from 1965 to 1968 of the American Red Cross, chairman of their National Resolutions Committee in 1970, chairman of the Tuscaloosa County Chapter in 1960, 1961, and 1962; appointed by President Richard M. Nixon as a member of the State Advisory Committee of the Cabinet Committee on Education, serving from 1970 to 1973; chairman of the Druid City Hospital Board in Tuscaloosa, 1949 to 1951; member of the Board of Trustees of the Federated Guaranty Life Insurance Company; chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Indian Springs School, Helena, Alabama; member of the National Citizens Committee for Community Relations, 1964-65, appointed by President Lyndon B. Johnson; chairman of the Alabama Chapter of the Radio Board of Trustees of Stillman College, 1965-74, and chairman of the Board of Trustees 1973-74; president of the Tuscaloosa Chamber of Commerce 1954-55; member of the Board of Directors 1961-73, member of the Executive Committee 1961-73, campaign chairman in 1961, president in 1963, and treasurer 1970-72 of the United Fund, Tuscaloosa County; and member of the Board of Directors of the YMCA 1966-72.

He was an elder of the First Presbyterian Church in Tuscaloosa, a member of the National Conference of Christian and Jews, also a member of their Board of Trustees and National Board of Governors since 1967, and member of the Executive Committee, Alabama Chapter since 1967.

In professional organizations he is a member of the Alabama Bankers Association and served as their president 1970 to 1971; was a member of the Board of Directors of the Alabama Law School Foundation; member of the American Association of University Professors; member of the American Bankers Association, vice-chairman of the Government Relations Council, 1972 to 1973, and member of their Special Committee to Review the Findings of the Presidential Commission of Financial Structure and Regulations (Hunt Commission); member of the American Bar Association; member of the Committee of Federal Legislation of the Association of American College Law Schools in 1964; president of the Junior Bar Association of Alabama in 1936.

Mr. LeMaistre published a number of articles appearing in periodicals on banking. In 1954 he wrote a Real Estate Handbook, published by Paul R. Malone of Birmingham, Alabama. The American Bankers Association published his recommendations of the Special Committee on the Hunt Commission, Toward a More Viable Finance System. In August 1974, the Commercial West published The Responsibilities of the Director; in September 1974, the Texas Bankers Record included his "What Should be Expected of a Bank Director in These Times?" in their publication. In October 1974, Mid-Continent Banker published "Insider Transactions;" in October 1974, the Journal of Commercial Bank Lending, Robert Morris Associates published "Insider Dealings and Financial Restructuring;" and in November 1974, the American Banker published the "Mistrust by Biggest Depositors in Financial Institutions Top Peril."

Awards were given to Mr. LeMaistre by the Universdity of Alabama fraternities Omicron Delta Kappa and Beta Gamma Sigma. In addition he received the Algernon Sydney Sullivan award from the University of Alabama.

He is married to the former Virginia Mosby and they have three children, Mrs. Virginia L. Jones of Decatur, Alabama; Alice Cartwright LeMaistre of Canberra, Australia; and George Alexander, Jr. of Washington, D.C. Mr. LeMaistre is now deceased.