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Finding Your Passion: A conversation with Kyle McMillian, senior vice president, commercial loan officer

We talk with Kyle McMillian, senior vice president and commercial loan officer about his unique career path, most significant accomplishments and his passion for giving back.  

Tell me more about what you do at UMB.

I am a senior vice president and commercial loan officer for UMB Bank Arizona. I was lucky to find my passion early on in life and started my banking career in high school as a bank teller. My career path is unusual. I’ve spent my entire post-college career at UMB Bank and recently celebrated my 15th anniversary. I joined UMB Bank’s Management Rotation Program just one month after graduating college and was able to gain exposure and experience in various departments within the bank before joining the commercial team in Arizona.

What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment during your 15 years with UMB?

When UMB expanded its presence into Arizona, I was given the opportunity to be one of the first dozen associates to develop and grow the new office in Phoenix. We started with zero in-market networks and no existing book of business and now bank several marquee businesses in the market and have $1.6B in average loan balances as of 2Q 2021.

During the past year, I was also able to lead the task force in the first round of the Payment Protection Program (PPP) funding in Arizona. Our team rose to the occasion, and together, we secured funding for all of our customers who applied.

Tell us about a moment that provided you clarity about your passion.

When I was a child, I spent Saturdays with my grandparents; one Saturday sticks out in my memory. It was the night before Christmas in 1996, and while watching sports bloopers (an affinity my grandpa and I shared and bonded over), my grandpa began gagging and convulsing. I rushed over to my grandma, who quickly dialed 911, and then to the neighbor’s house for help. Unfortunately, that was the last time I saw my grandpa. He passed away that evening from a heart attack.

I was able to turn this heartbreaking incident into a passion to find ways to help others and have been able to fulfill this passion at UMB. Daily, I work to find solutions that help people with their finances and their business. My role in PPP was vital to helping thousands of small businesses stay afloat and helped people stay employed during the height of the pandemic. It is my goal to create value and make an impact on others and I strive to achieve this every day, both at work and in the community.

What causes or organizations are you most passionate about?

I serve on the board for Boys Hope Girls Hope of Arizona, where we nurture and guide motivated young people in need to become well-educated, career-ready men and women. I am also involved in Scottsdale Active 20-30 Club, a men’s organization that gives back to the community by raising money to support children’s charities in Arizona. I am leading the reorganization process to set up the 501(c)3 to have the proper designations for future growth and grant access. As president, I challenged the members to raise $1 million within the fiscal year, something that had never been done before in the organization’s 30-year history. I wagered a tattoo if they could hit that milestone and I now proudly have “$1.3MM” on my ankle in celebration of raising $1.3 million for kids!

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