Profile of the Week

Jay McKenna, senior vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer, North Shore Bank

Name: Jay McKenna

Title: Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer

Company: North Shore Bank

City of Residence: Brookfield

Family: Wife, Lisa; sons, James (10), Christopher (7) and Patrick (4)

What’s new at your company this year? “We continue to navigate the challenging business environment along with everyone else, building on the careful decisions, prudent lending practices and long-term customer commitment that have made North Shore Bank one of the strongest and most secure institutions in the country. Customer-oriented growth initiatives are a major focus for 2009, including new branches in southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois and new products for our customers.”

What was the best investment/client/project you’ve been involved with? “In 2000, North Shore Bank purchased Milwaukee-based Marquette Savings Bank. It was a good business move for North Shore Bank, but also a pioneering move for the banking industry because it marked the first time a mutually owned thrift bought a mutual holding company. The deal was fascinating – to bankers and people with accounting backgrounds like me, at least – because of the unique capital structures of the two entities and the careful timing and planning that was required. We received some nice publicity as an industry trailblazer, but, most importantly, it’s also a win-win situation for North Shore Bank and Marquette Savings Bank shareholders, customers and employees.

What was the funniest or most interesting moment of your career? “At my previous job as an auditor in a large public accounting firm, I was working at a small town bank. Being an eager young auditor, I was working late, but soon discovered I had been locked inside the bank all alone after all the employees had left. Knowing the doors were alarmed, my first call was to the local police department. They didn’t seem too interested in helping me out. Luckily, I was able to find a phone book and call one of the employees at home to come unlock the door. For a while, I thought I’d be spending the night in the bank.”

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