While still in high school, Kelley Brown-Murro took a job as a teller at Citibank. She wasn’t merely blazing a career path; she was following one.
A native of South Florida, Brown-Murro grew up the daughter of a branch manager, learning at an early age about balancing work and home life. Those lessons help her now as Regions’ Market Executive and Commercial Banking Leader in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. And Kelley’s career journey and leadership experience, like those of other women leaders at Regions, now serve as an inspiration to colleagues pursuing their own professional growth.
Here are highlights from a recent conversation with Kelley.
Where did you grow up? How did you get into banking?
“I grew up in the market I serve, Palm Beach County. I’m South Florida born and raised. My mom was a banker, so It was a natural progression for me. As a kid, I’d go with her to the office – she was a branch manager. My brother was three years younger, so we’d spend the day playing ‘banker.’ He’d be the customer, and I’d open an account for him. We both just loved being there.”
How did being the daughter of a banker impact you?
“My mom had a wonderful way of intertwining her job, her service to the community and her family by involving us in her career, her community involvement, church on Sundays and even Girl Scouts. She was a single mom then, yet she had a wonderful way of balancing everything. Handling three relationships like that is very difficult to do, and you don’t always get it right, but my memories of those times are so good.
“What I like about Regions is that those priorities, such as service to the community, are very important.”
It’s an advantage we have working for a company that puts an emphasis on service while also allowing us to enjoy our careers.
Kelley Brown-Murro, Regions’ Market Executive and Commercial Banking Leader in Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach
“Service is part of our job; it aligns with our strategic priorities. So, I can include my kids and enjoy that role of my life while I’m out in the community. Like my mom, I’m a single mom. My children are getting older now (13 and 16 years old), but they enjoy doing the things I do. I’m lucky I was prepared because of the tools my mom provided me. I never want them to feel like they’re missing out.”
One priority of your job is community outreach. While you’re involved with a lot of different things, one that caught our attention is your role in the Pace Center for Girls. As I understand it, Pace Center is for at-risk females in middle and high school who receive counseling, case management and classroom instruction.
“I love this connection. Students are young girls who have been given a second chance. Some have parents who are incarcerated. All are there because of circumstances beyond their control. When I joined Regions, I looked through my community for where needs matched my skillset, and Pace stood out – especially when it comes to their needs for financial literacy and workforce readiness.
“We just completed an all-day summit supported by Regions, where we met with students from across four South Florida counties. We did mentoring. They had told us the careers they were interested in, for instance law enforcement, healthcare and military service. We brought in professionals from those fields, and veterans, to share very personal life stories – often similar stories – about what they overcame to succeed. I get a little teary eyed remembering the responses, how these girls who were put in this position could see they weren’t alone. As one girl sitting in the front row put it, she now felt like she had hope that she could ‘get to the other side.’
“I also partnered with our Community Development Manager, Hanai Sablich, on workforce readiness and financial literacy. The kids are amazing. They’re like sponges. We wanted to provide inspiration and motivation on the spot. I couldn’t have asked for a better response.
“And the best thing of all? My children can join me as we carry out additional service to meet current and future needs. So it gives them another chance to see the value and importance of uplifting others. My mother’s banking career helped me see the roles that financial professionals can serve in supporting communities. Now, my career is helping me show my children the same.”
Developing leaders and engaging associates is an everyday focus for Regions Bank. See additional Women in Leadership profiles linked below: