This Woman's Job: to Make You Like BofA

Anne Finucane juggles politicians, shareholders, and customers

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 15, 2012 3:43 PM CST

(Newser) – Anne Finucane has one of the hardest jobs in the country: to make us like Bank of America. The high-powered image-maker juggles politicians, interest groups, and her own boss—BofA President Brian Moynihan—in an ongoing effort to resuscitate the bank's flailing reputation and lowly stock price since the 2008 economic collapse. Correct that: Finucane is so powerful, Moynihan has to meet with her. “We all report to Anne,” he once quipped.

A wide-ranging New York Times article looks at Finucane's upbringing among Boston Democrats, her marriage to MSNBC contributor Mike Barnicle, and her rise to power in the rapidly expanding banking world. Described by colleagues as "blunt" and "brutal," Finucane has already stumbled by trying to impose $5 debit card fees. But she's also meeting with borrower advocates to lower principal on some mortgages, despite shareholder concerns. “When BofA stock was $40, her ability to analyze issues coolly and collectively was the same as when BofA was $5.50,” says a friend. "She stays above the fray and observes it.”

Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns and Anne Finucane, Chief Marketing Officer, Bank of America, attend the 2009 National Arts Awards on Monday, Oct. 5, 2009, in New York.
Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns and Anne Finucane, Chief Marketing Officer, Bank of America, attend the 2009 National Arts Awards on Monday, Oct. 5, 2009, in New York.   (AP Photo/Evan Agostini)
Anne Finucane, Global Corporate Affairs Executive of Bank of America, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008.
Anne Finucane, Global Corporate Affairs Executive of Bank of America, testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
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