University of Tennessee

Tiffany Elkins Gardner

A passion for working with people & finance

Finance - Alumni

Tiffany Elkins Gardner found a way to combine her passion for working with people and finance in her role as senior vice president for corporate and commercial banking at First Tennessee Bank.

“I just get a great sense of accomplishment out of making clients happy,” she says.

Gardner entered the banking industry as a part-time teller while earning her bachelor’s degree in finance at the Haslam College of Business. After graduating in 1992, she knew that commercial banking was the right avenue for her.

“It is a blend between working and understanding the numbers but also interacting with clients on a daily basis to provide solutions to their needs,” said Gardner.  She worked at Bank of America as a credit analyst, and later joined RBC Centura Bank in Hickory, North Carolina, in 2000 as the executive and relationship manager.

Since returning to Knoxville in 2006, Gardner has excelled in her work at the First Tennessee Bank. She manages the bank’s top five clients for the east market. Her team consists of relationship managers, portfolio managers, credit analysts, and client specialists who work together to provide solutions for their client’s banking needs.

By listening to her clients and viewing situations objectively, Gardner says she’s earned their trust.

“No client is the same, and each has unique needs, which keeps my job fun,” Garner says. “I really enjoy learning about their business and how they got to where they are today.”

Born and raised in Knoxville, Gardner is glad to be back in big orange country. As a third generation graduate of UT, and with a daughter beginning UT as a freshman this fall, her passion for the campus and the community is apparent. She has worked with United Way, Leadership Knoxville, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee.

“I serve on the Knoxville Chamber of Commerce Board and the Haslam College of Business Finance Advisory Board as well,” she says. “I love giving back to my community.”