Rob Brough at the Zions Bank Building in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Photo by Kevin Kiernan

I recently attended the retirement celebration of a dear friend and colleague. The party included equal parts roasting and paying tribute to the significant contributions made by my associate over the course of his 38-year banking career.

As I joined others in celebrating a remarkable and meaningful career, I realized that I am almost exactly in the middle of my working life. I began my career in banking 20 years ago in 1997 at the age of 27. If I retire sometime in my mid- to late-60s, that will be about 20 years from now.


As I listened to the comments made at the gathering and my friend’s parting remarks, I was struck by three thoughts.

First, what would I want others to say about me when it is my time to ride off into the sunset of retirement? I remembered some advice I received early in my career. A trusted friend and mentor said, “Individual success is a function of the degree to which you contribute to the success of the organization of which you are a part.”

One of my greatest desires would be for others to say that I was a contributor to the success of the bank and the growth and development of my employees. I would also hope that others would view me as one who created value for our community through my efforts to return a portion of what I have been given for the benefit of others.

My second thought centered on what I want to be able to say about my work experience at the end of my career. While I hope to be able to reflect on many successes, meaningful contributions and enduring accomplishments, above all else, I expect my most poignant feelings will be for those with whom I had the joy of sharing my career.

These sentiments shared by Emerson come to mind: “To laugh often and love much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children, to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends, to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded!”

My final thought was simply one of gratitude for the privilege of working for Zions Bank. I love what I do. I love those with whom I work and those for whom I work.

So, as I reflect on my career “from the middle,” I look forward to the next 20 years being as interesting, challenging, exciting and fulfilling as

the first 20.

Rob Brough

Executive Vice President

Corporate Marketing and Communications