What’s the banking connection with Taylor Swift and the Super Bowl?

There’s a banking tie-in to a topic dominating pop culture.

By Khalil Garriott

We are all aware of the global popularity of Taylor Swift, arguably the most famous person on the planet. Only those living under a rock haven’t heard about her romance with NFL player Travis Kelce. And with two weeks of pregame hype reaching far beyond the boundaries of sport, you’d be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn’t know that Kelce’s Kansas City Chiefs are vying for another NFL championship on Sunday.

But did you know that Kelce’s mother spent 40 years in banking?

Donna Kelce worked in finance for four decades, retiring in 2021. She held SVP and VP roles at Truist for 11 years, Bank One (now JPMorgan Chase) for 22 years and KeyBank for seven years.

Her specialties were underwriting fund and direct affordable housing projects. She dedicated her long, successful career—specializing in commercial real estate finances—to the same industry that the target audience of this publication has committed to.

The Cleveland native now calls Orlando home. She has gained a modicum of national notoriety in her own right as a result of the recent relationship between the globally popular singer-songwriter and the Kansas City Chiefs tight end. This season, Donna Kelce has been spotted by broadcast cameras with Swift in suites at NFL stadiums—both cheering on Patrick Mahomes’ favorite target. Her other son, Jason, just retired after a stellar career that pundits around the league predict will land him in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Swift’s list of latest achievements rivals the length of a CVS receipt. Win TIME Person of the Year for 2023: Check. Break the Grammys record for most album of the year wins (with four): Check. Set the internet afire with a surprise album tease on Grammys night: Check. Inspire a legion of adoring Swifties who support her at every turn of her soaring career: Check.

It’s not every day there’s a neat banking tie-in to a person dominating the cultural zeitgeist.

As the Chiefs get set to battle the San Francisco 49ers for the Lombardi Trophy, expect to see the CBS cameras cut to proud mom Donna Kelce and Swift riding the wave of emotions while Travis and team leave it all out on the field.

And that proud mom is part of the family of bankers.

Khalil Garriott is executive editor of ABA Banking Journal and VP for creative content strategy at American Bankers Association.

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