updated 8/31/2010 7:45:45 AM ET 2010-08-31T11:45:45

OLNEY, Md., Aug. 30, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc. (Nasdaq:SASR) ranked among the top "Most Trustworthy Companies" list compiled for Forbes by Audit Integrity, a Los Angeles-based independent financial analytics firm.  

Audit Integrity conducted a survey reviewing companies traded on the U.S. exchanges. Using its Accounting & Governance Risk (AGR) rating, Audit Integrity assigns scores based on a company's accounting and management practices. The AGR rating identifies companies that have consistently shown "transparent and conservative accounting practices, and solid corporate governance and management." Scores range from 0 (very aggressive) to 100 (conservative); lower rated companies are more likely to suffer equity loss, issue financial restatements, and face class action suits. Conversely, Forbes states that companies with higher ratings tend to be more trustworthy. Fewer than 5% of public companies make Audit Integrity's Most Trustworthy Companies list.

"During our nation's recent economic challenges, it is gratifying to see that Sandy Spring Bancorp has maintained its long history of superior accounting practices," states Daniel J. Schrider, President and CEO. "Our core values of Relationship, Integrity, Community, Drive for Performance, and Teamwork are the foundation principles that have been the strength of our company. It is an honor to be listed among such distinguished companies across the nation and we offer congratulations to our fellow honorees."

Beyond an annual compilation of most trustworthy companies, in 2010, Audit Integrity completed its first five year trend. Sandy Spring Bancorp scored an impressive 98 out of 100 points and has been consistently recognized as one the Most Trustworthy Companies over the entire 60 month survey period. More information on Audit Integrity's methodology can be found at http://www.forbes.com/2010/08/05/most-trustworthy-companies-personal-finance-audit-integrity.html

About Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc. /Sandy Spring Bank

With $3.7 billion in assets, (Nasdaq:SASR) Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc. is the holding company for Sandy Spring Bank and its principal subsidiaries, Sandy Spring Insurance Corporation, The Equipment Leasing Company and West Financial Services, Inc. Sandy Spring Bancorp is the oldest and largest publicly traded banking company headquartered and operating in Maryland. Sandy Spring is a community banking organization that focuses its lending and other services on businesses and consumers in the local market area. Independent and community-oriented, Sandy Spring Bank was founded in 1868 and offers a broad range of commercial banking, retail banking and trust services through 43 community offices in Anne Arundel, Carroll, Frederick, Howard, Montgomery, and Prince George's counties in Maryland, and in Fairfax and Loudoun counties in Virginia. Through its subsidiaries, Sandy Spring Bank also offers a comprehensive menu of leasing, insurance and investment management services. Visit www.sandyspringbank.com to locate an ATM near you or for more information about Sandy Spring Bank.

The Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=4138

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