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Hoptry of First Merchants Bank Named 2021 IBA Woman of the Year

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Friday, November 12, 2021

MUNCIE, IN. -- First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ - FRME) is proud to announce Jadira Hoptry, Director of Community Lending and Development, as the 2021 Indiana Bankers Association (IBA) Woman of the Year. The award, sponsored by Krieg DeVault LLP, recognizes female professionals who best demonstrate professional excellence, community service and a passion for supporting other women to reach their full potential – whether in banking or other fields.

Hoptry first began her career in Indianapolis with Fifth Third Bank in 1998. As a newcomer to the financial industry, she won three President’s Circle trips for her performance and developed extensive knowledge in small business services and Small Business Administration products. After leaving the state, Hoptry continued to lead community lending and development efforts, coinciding with her passion for helping others.

Since then, Hoptry has moved back to Indiana and began her role at First Merchants in 2020. As Director of Community Lending and Development, Hoptry leads the bank’s affordable housing initiatives and a team of community home lenders across the markets First Merchants serves to advance affordable housing and homeownership opportunities.

In a little over a year, Hoptry has made a significant impact and was a clear choice to be nominated for this award through her commitment to First Merchants’ corporate social responsibility and deep empathy for the bank’s vision and mission.

“I’m humbled and honored to receive this recognition,” said Hoptry. “But I am also inspired. This is a big win for First Merchants Bank, my amazing team, the banking industry and everyone who shares our passion for community lending, inclusive economic mobility and diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives.”

Amber Van Til, President and CEO of IBA, recognized Hoptry for her commitment to the industry while lifting up other women in banking. She noted that the bank team and department are stronger because of her influence.

“Jadira is a high-achieving teammate and a passionate advocate for inclusive economic mobility,” said First Merchants CEO Mark Hardwick. “She helps deliver our bank’s vision of enhancing the financial wellness of the diverse communities we serve through her work in advancing home ownership opportunities across our markets and her leadership in our own Diversity, Equity and Inclusion program. Being named IBA Woman of the Year for 2021 is an honor she richly deserves.”

Hoptry is a board member of Prosperity Indiana, an organization advocating for affordable housing, and serves as chair of the organization’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. She holds additional leadership positions with Bankable Powered by the Flagship Enterprise Center, the Indiana Latino Institute, Local Initiatives Support Corporation and United Way. A Latino community advocate and committed volunteer, Hoptry is also active with Coburn Place Safe Haven, Dress for Success, Pace Center for Girls and the Women’s Fund of Southwest Florida. She graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in business administration and has earned certification as an economic development finance professional.

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Bali Heir (left) and Niki Finelli of Kreig DeVault LLP (right) presented the 2021 IBA Women of the Year Award to Jadira Hoptry (center).

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About First Merchants Corporation

First Merchants Corporation is a financial holding company headquartered in Muncie, Ind. The Corporation has one full-service bank charter, First Merchants Bank. The bank also operates as First Merchants Private Wealth Advisors (as a division of First Merchants Bank). First Merchants Corporation’s common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market System under the symbol FRME. Quotations are carried in daily newspapers and can be found on the company’s website (www.firstmerchants.com). FIRST MERCHANTS and the Shield Logo are federally registered trademarks of First Merchants Corporation.