15 Minutes With … Dana Kilborne

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Dana Kilborne from Florida on women in banking

Dana Kilborne
President/CEO
of the $239 Million-Asset
Florida Bank of Commerce in Orlando, Fla.

IB: What’s new at Florida Bank of Commerce?

Kilborne: It’s been a busy summer here at the bank. We’re set to open our seventh location this month in Lake Nona, better known as “Medical City.” Florida Bank of Commerce will be the first community bank to have a presence in this market. The area is home to a number of hospitals and medical research companies. We are really excited about the potential of this market.

IB: How is Orlando doing?

Kilborne: The marketplace is extremely diverse. Of course, tourism is an economic driver here, but manufacturing, high-tech businesses and medical research are prominent around Orlando as well.

IB: How does your bank support its small-business customers?

Kilborne: We are very big on education and providing the latest guidance on various issues that may impact their businesses. We typically hold an educational session each quarter on a topic of interest to them. In the past, we have held sessions on changes to the tax code, insurance and health care, and succession planning.

IB: You recently participated in the Second Annual Women in Banking Conference. Tell me about that experience?

Kilborne: It was a wonderful opportunity. I had served on the inaugural committee last year and was delighted to be invited back to serve as a panelist this year. It’s always energizing to be with a room full of bright and enthusiastic women in our industry. We discussed a number of today’s top challenges, like balancing a career and family, securing leadership roles and developing leadership skills.

IB: Do you have any advice for emerging leaders, both female and male?

Kilborne: First off, play to your strengths. Identify what your own strengths are and figure out how they can help you achieve your goals. Secondly, don’t spend time doing something that doesn’t make you happy. Passion is a differentiator. Discover what you’re passionate about and go for it. Lastly, community banking is still a relationship business. Social media and other tools can be used to help drive customers to us, but at the end of the day people want to bank with someone they like and trust. That trust is built through sincere relationships.

IB: You’ve been a banker for more than 25 years. What’s the best thing about being a community banker?

Kilborne: For me it’s still meeting with business owners in their place of business and listening to them tell their stories. You can always hear the passion in their voices and understand what drives them.

IB: If you weren’t a community banker, what would you be doing?

Kilborne: I’ve always been interested in building things. It’s something I inherited from my father, so I would like to think that I would possibly have my own manufacturing business. I’m not certain what I would manufacture, but I’m sure I could figure something out.

IB: What do you like to do for fun?

Kilborne: I enjoy spending time with my husband and our three children. Our kids are very active in sports and music, so I’m usually busy with their activities.

I also like to volunteer in my free time working in the community. I’m involved with the local zoo, the Jewish Community Center and a few other programs that keep me busy.

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