Former North Carolina-based bank CEO Kel Landis III dies

Published 2:16 pm Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Kel Landis III, a former regional bank CEO and economic adviser to a North Carolina governor, has died at age 64, a funeral home said.

Landis died at his Raleigh home on Saturday, Brown-Wynne Funeral Home confirmed on Tuesday. An obituary from his family released by the funeral home said he had battled cancer.

A Rocky Mount native, Landis was president of Rocky Mount-based Centura Bank starting in the mid-1990s. He became chief executive of RBC Centura after Centura was bought by the Royal Bank of Canada in 2001.

After retiring as CEO, Landis became an economic adviser to then-Gov. Mike Easley in 2005. That same year he helped create Plexus Capital, which invests in small businesses.

Gov. Roy Cooper, who like Easley and Landis grew up in Nash County, recently presented Landis with the Order of the Long Leaf Pine.

Landis served on the trustee board at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and recently worked to raise money to build a North Carolina Freedom Park to honor contributions of African Americans. Landis also wrote a motivational book, “The Little Book of Do!”

Survivors include his wife Nina Szlosberg-Landis, two children and two grandchildren. A public memorial service will be held later.

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