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KeyBank Hudson Valley/Metro NY District President Ruth Mahoney was born in Ireland and came to the United States to attend Marist College as a freshman, but you would never know it from speaking to her. You won’t hear a trace of brogue, though, since, Maroney says, “I’ve learned to speak ‘American’ over the years,” she says.

Evidently she’s learned something else, too: how to turn around an organization. When Mahoney took over in 2010 as president for the Hudson Valley/Metro NY district, which comprises 59 branches and more than 400 employees, the region’s performance scraped the bottom of KeyBank’s 23-market barrel. By 2013, though, the Hudson Valley/NY Metro region’s private and commercial banking teams were ranked among the top divisions at Key. How did she do it?

“It was all about the people and relationship-building,” says Mahoney, an Ossining resident. “Whether it’s our clients, people considering doing business with us, or members of the community, those relationships are what help us survive and thrive.”

“Ruth inspires everyone she works with, whether it is at Key or in the community,” says Lianne Hales-Dugan, senior director of corporate relations and operations at the Westchester Medical Center Foundation and the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital Foundation, and a friend and colleague of Mahoney. “But Ruth also does much more—she empowers them to find inspiration within themselves. She understands that providing people with opportunities to learn and the tools to succeed, and demanding they achieve to their fullest capabilities, is the best way to develop talent and grow an organization.”

Mahoney’s focus on relationship-building is not limited to KeyBank. Not only can she rattle off a long list of community/nonprofit board memberships, including the United Way of Westchester and Putnam, but she also lays claim to a slew of business recognitions and awards—far too many to list here.

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