Richard's Rapid Fire - June 9, 2017

June 9, 2017


Before going into the events in banking and politics this week, I would like to recognize the retirement of two very special people. This month, Mary Navarro of Huntington Bank and Paul Olivier of Frost Bank are retiring.  


Mary served in the banking industry for 42 years and was named by the American Banker as one of the Most Powerful Women in Banking. She has been a CBA Board member for 13 years and served as Board Chair in 2011.  Prior to becoming Huntington’s retail and business banking director, Mary served as executive vice president and eastern region retail manager for Banc One Corporation before it merged with JPMorgan Chase. She held many other senior leadership positions in retail, small business, commercial banking and commercial credit over her 17-year tenure there. We are pleased Mary will join us next week for her last board meeting.  She will be living full time in Florida and I’m looking forward to sharing a few sunsets with her and her family.


Paul spent every day of his entire 41 years in banking at Frost Bank in San Antonio, Texas.  I was delighted to spend many hours this week discussing Frost’s future as I toured their new state-of-the-art technology and innovation center.  I believe a retirement career should be offered to Paul as ambassador for San Antonio, as he truly loves that community. Paul has been a valued participant of CBA’s Mid-Tier Executive Retail Forum, always providing us with wisdom and keen insight. A fond memory I will have of Paul is when he challenged me to read the Accidental Superpower. I am pleased to say, I have just now begun to read it.


Mary and Paul have been tremendous stewards of banking whose leadership will have a lasting impact on us all. They will always be a part of the CBA family, and we wish them both the best.


CHOICE Act Passes the House. Next Stop, the Senate.

The House of Representatives finally passed the Financial CHOICE Act. As you know, Chairman Hensarling led this bill in an attempt to modify the Dodd-Frank Act, not repeal it entirely. To no surprise, Democrats and Republicans voted along party lines. Now, the real work is set to begin in the Senate.


My prediction? Dodd-Frank reform will not happen until the 4th quarter of this year. Regardless, CBA and many other banking trades will continue to push for a five-person bipartisan commission at the CFPB, as we believe one person should not have uncontested power in governing one of the most powerful agencies in the nation. Let me remind you, a Morning Consult poll we commissioned shows voters in battleground states prefer a bipartisan commission at the bureau by a 3-1 margin. We did appreciate reforms the CHOICE Act made to section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act, to arbitration, as well as to the small dollar rule.


What Visiting Frost Bank in San Antonio Taught Me

A top-10 day at CBA for me was my recent trip to San Antonio. As I mentioned in the beginning, I stopped by to see Paul Olivier and the folks at Frost. Great seeing Frost CEO Phil Green, CBA Committee Members Christy Merecka, Cindy Reeves, Donna Normandin, Lisa Cuevas, Susie Smith, Rebecka Holt, Raquel Cardenas, Eduardo Berain, and CBA Mid-Tier Retail Executive member Jimmy Stead. They gave me a tour of every square foot of the bank’s new technology building, called Frost One. As my host, Paul explained it was the vision of Phil some 15 years ago that Frost simply had to own the next frontier of banking technology after Phil attended a Harvard symposium of technology. I was impressed a bank of Frost’s size invested tremendous amount of capital and time – at great risk – to secure their future. But they did and are now a leading bank in Texas. This is what it’s all about – the ability to not only think differently, but to have the wherewithal to take action. This brings to mind a news article this week with J.Crew CEO Mickey Drexler where he admitted to being unprepared for how quickly online shopping upended retailers.


When I was in San Antonio, I also stopped by to see our friends at USAA. Big thanks to Carl Liebert, Chief Operating Officer, for meeting with the CBA team to discuss digital strategy and process improvement.


CBA Board Will be Here Next Week

Looking forward to having our Board Members in D.C. next week. The Board will be meeting with Keith Noreika, Acting Comptroller of the Currency, other administration officers, as well as the National Economic Council to discuss recent developments in the banking industry and the CHOICE Act. Stay tuned for my full update in next week’s Rapid Fire.



Joined U.S. Bank to Talk Regulation in a New Political Era

On Thursday, I presented at U.S. Bank’s Executive Client Roundtable and provided my banking perspective and regulatory outlook in a new political era. I reminded those in the room of the three factors influencing the industry the most, to include economy, technology and compliance. Though the industry is getting smaller, banks must continue to develop strategies for the next generation of banking while reminding consumers of the benefits we provide communities and families.



Observations from my first trip to Spain

Last week, I visited Spain for the first time for a wedding. Here are my takeaways:


  1. Why do people feel the need to go to a foreign country to get married?  :)  Can’t they do it in the good ol’ USA?  To be fair, I did enjoy every moment.
  2. Fiestas and siestas happen on a daily basis. Partying I get. But naps? What are those!?
  3. Madrid has the most elaborate airport and Starbucks I ever witnessed. With all the travel I have done, that’s saying something.
  4. Burger King and Taco Bell are on every corner. And yes, I found a double bacon cheeseburger, thank you very much!
  5. The rock of Gibraltar is big. As in BIG!
  6. The train system is embarrassingly superior to ours. Maybe I need to start lobbying Congress to improve our infrastructure. Come on, Metro!
  7. Banks close at 2:00 pm every day. Repeat. Every. Day.
  8. I was one of the last people to visit Banco Popular before it was purchased for 1 euro by Santander. A reminder nothing lasts forever.
  9. Most people in Spain speak some English. Too bad this does not happen in the reverse. Diversity and learning languages are good for business.
  10. It was great to see CBA members Santander and BBVA. You know ME, CBA and our members are always a priority, regardless of location.



Membership Spotlight: Bank of America Segment on Fox Business

We loved seeing our folks at Bank of America on Fox Business this week. In case you missed it, here’s the clip of D. Steve Boland, director of consumer lending at Bank of America, on Mornings with Maria explaining the new app to help consumers shop for a car and the state of the U.S. consumer.



Three Things to Know




Nate Gatten has been hired as SVP of government affairs for American Airlines. He currently is managing director and head of global government relations for JPMorgan Chase.


We are pleased to welcome summer interns Caroline Kerr and Nicholas Crowley to the CBA family. Caroline and Nick will be here all summer long, contributing to the incredibly important work we do around banking and policy.