Magazine article American Banker

Star Exec Quits Card Game for Life in Paradise

Magazine article American Banker

Star Exec Quits Card Game for Life in Paradise

Article excerpt

Most banks worry about losing valued employees to other banks, but the competition for Star Banc Corp.'s credit card executive was not of the brick- and-mortar kind.

The company lost senior vice president Collin McKenny to the Fiji Islands.

Ms. McKenny, a prominent voice in the card industry and a nine-year veteran of the Cincinnati bank, is three months into her new life.

Ms. McKenny, her husband, and three pets-a cat, a cockatoo, and a Shih Tzu-moved to Vanua Viti island to open a resort called Lomalagi, the Fijian word for heaven.

The 52-year-old banker had been plotting her move for a decade, determined to reach her goal before she turned 55.

"I'm looking forward to not dealing with other people's priorities," Ms. McKenny said in an interview before she left Cincinnati in March.

Though lacking experience in the hospitality business, Ms. McKenny says there is little difference between running an upscale resort and providing a high level of customer service for a bank.

While Fiji may be gaining a hotel, the card business has lost a leader of 30 years' experience who had served on numerous industry committees and taught at the American Bankers Association's National School of Bank Card Management.

Ms. McKenny was also responsible for several innovative programs at Star, including the Dining A La Card program-which gives Cincinnati-area cardholders a 20% discount on restaurant bills-and a card designed to help customers save for their children's college expenses. …

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