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A Conversation with Rita Lowman: Reflecting on a Year as Chair of the FBA

June 26, 2018

Rita Lowman is one of the Tampa Bay area’s leading businesspeople. Her accomplishments are many, and her commitment to the bay area is evident. As the president of Pilot Bank, she’s an example of a strong work ethic, a philanthropic mindset, and an attitude toward teamwork. Rita shared her time with #TeamElevate to provide an inside perspective to her year as chair of the Florida Bankers Association. Read the Q & A here.


Q: Why was the role of chair for the Florida Bankers Association meaningful for you?

A: It was an honor to serve as chair of the FBA. I remain particularly humbled by the fact that, in the Association’s 130-year history, I was only the third woman to serve as chair. The opportunity was not about being a female chair though, the opportunity was about working toward positive change in our industry.


Q: You accomplished many things during your year as chair. What are some of the key accomplishments for you?

A: For the past two years, I had the opportunity to visit Washington D.C. on an almost monthly basis. Along with the FBA and ABA, I was able to play an integral part in Senate Bill 2155—which came to be known as a community bank bill. During my time as chair, the FBA testified on the Hill. We discussed the importance of keeping our industry safe and doing so by rolling back several of the banking regulations put into place during the financial crisis that took place 10 years ago.


Q: What can you share about your commitment to emerging leaders?

A: Regardless of the industry, leaders must invest in future leaders. I’m deeply committed to engaging our industry’s emerging leaders in ways that help them further refine and develop their skills. I’m proud that, this past year, the FBA hosted 25 emerging leaders in D.C. They visited 10 congressional leaders and the FDIC. The experiences are enriching for all of us.  I also invited an emerging leader to Chair this year’s FBA Conference.


Q: You also did some work in education. What are the programs you helped develop?

A: Education at all levels is essential. The FBA introduced a partnership with Florida State University with a new Juris Masters program in Compliance.  This quarter 90 students from the industry are enrolled in the program.


Q: How much traveling and public speaking did you do in your role as chair?

A: The short answer is a lot! One amazing experience was representing the industry in Hawaii. I was honored to be a featured speaker at the American Bankers Association’s annual Conference for Community Bankers. My travels and speaking engagements also took me to the Dominican Republic for the Caribbean Association of Banks’ Annual General Meeting and Conference. Having an opportunity to travel and interact with bankers from around the world is extremely educational. I appreciate learning from other bankers’ perspectives and experiences.

Rita Lowman is grateful for her time as chair of the Florida Bankers Association. She will continue serving on the American Bankers Association’s Community Council Board. You’ll continue to find Rita’s perspectives on banking shared in print and on both the radio and podcasts. She enjoys providing insights on industry regulations and growth. “My year has been magical,” expressed Rita. “With the FBA, the Pilot Bank team, and my family, I’ve had an amazing journey.”

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This post was written by Elevate, Inc.

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