GSBLSU 2019 State Association Letter

Mike HighField, PhD, CFA, CTP
Vice President for Curriculum, GSBLSU
Professor of Finance, Mississippi State University

Peter Drucker once said, “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” At the Graduate School of Banking at Louisiana State University (GSBLSU), we are emphasizing ethical decision making as part of leadership in the financial services industry. As part of that effort, we are pleased to introduce two new upper-level courses focused on different facets of ethical leadership: Leadership Inside and Outside the Bank and Leading through Advocacy.

When it comes to leading and managing, are you a Lion, a Fox, a Clydesdale, or a St. Bernard?  In Rita Floyd, Director of Organization Development at Trustmark National Bank, will help you answer that question in Leadership Inside and Outside the Bank, a new required senior course for 2019. Rita will emphasize the importance of ethical leadership, the critical difference between leading and managing, how to effectively deal with conflict, and the role of bankers as stewards in their community. She will also help you examine the pitfalls to effective leadership, determine ways to foster better communication, and learn tips and tools to help bankers understand “self” and the impact “self” has on the thoughts and actions of others.  

A new faculty member at GSBLSU in 2019, Rita has worked in banking for 34 years in various capacities, but the major portion of this time in the Human Resources field. Her current role involves directing the Learning and Development function which encompasses Career Coaching, Team Effectiveness and Assessment Services, Talent Management, Succession Planning, Performance Management, 360 Degree Multi-rater Feedback, Mentorship and Training. She received her Master’s degree in Human Resources from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, and she was chosen by the Mississippi Business Journal as one of the 50 leading Business Women in 2009. Putting her experience to practice, Rita extends her work in learning and development beyond the walls of Trustmark by serving as an Adjunct Professor at Mississippi College in Clinton, Mississippi.

Leading through Advocacy, a new Junior/Senior elective for 2019, is an interactive course designed to educate banking leaders on the purpose of grassroots involvement in political campaigns and policy discussions.  Pamela Ricco, EVP and Chief Operating Officer at the Florida Bankers Association, will highlight the importance of local, state and federal advocacy for all bankers, covering best practices and demonstrating how advocacy has significantly impacted the banking industry over the last ten years.  Pamela will also address the role of state and national trade associations in advocacy initiatives.

Also a new faculty member at GSBLSU in 2019, Pamela, oversees all membership functions of the Florida Bankers Association, including Education, the Florida Bankers Education Foundation, Communications & Marketing, the Trust Division and all non-dues revenue programs.  Pamela also serves as President and CEO of FBA BancServ, Inc., the association’s wholly owned for-profit subsidiary. She holds a bachelors degree from the University of Alabama and two masters degrees from Florida State University. She is member of the Board of Trustees at Florida House, Florida’s state embassy on Capitol Hill, and she serves as a director at SelectSouce, a third-party administrator for the Florida Bankers Insurance Trust. 

At GSBLSU, our goal is to ensure that our graduates are prepared to advance and serve the needs of our industry, both today and in the future. As evidenced by the impressive backgrounds of these two new instructors we remain committed to our role as a banking school. Our next session is scheduled for May 19-31, 2019, and we invite you to visit to learn how GSBLSU can help advance your professional career and your bank. 

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