A former Moreland resident is among the 25 most powerful women in finance.
That’s according to American Banker magazine, which included American Express Centurion Bank president and CEO Andrea Moss on that list in its October issue.
“I’m quite surprised and happy about the award,” Moss said during a recent telephone interview.
In announcing her award, Tom Anderson, senior vice president of Global Banking, wrote, “Andrea’s professional skills and personal integrity have been known and celebrated at American Express for years. It is exciting that she is receiving the external recognition she deserves.”
Moss was valedictorian of her class at Snake River High School in 1984. Three years later she graduated from BYU.
“I thought I would go into teaching,” Moss said, noting that her mother taught for years. However, she said, she learned she didn’t care for that career path and graduated in accounting.
She started her career at Arthur Young, now known as Ernst and Young and audited American Express. She did such a good job that company officials offered her a job, something no longer possible under banking rules.
She worked for American Express for a couple of years, then left the company for awhile. When company officials called her back with another job offer, she accepted.
Moss was a controller for eight years, then moved into the company’s banking division in 2005. She served as AECB’s chief financial officer and chief operating officer before becoming its president and CEO four years ago.
“I got a whirlwind of experience in a few years,” she said of her career.
According to Moss, AECB is a $30 billion bank regulated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the state of Utah.
“We’ve weathered the storms and worked with our customers,” Moss said proudly. “We have come back and are trying to expand. We’re going slowly and cautiously.”
In addition to her leadership in her chosen career, Moss is an executive board member of the Salt Lake City Chamber of Commerce, serves on the American Bankers Associations Government Relations Council and is on the board of the Utah Bankers Association.
When her peers encouraged her to apply for the award, “I was hesitant,” she said. “They looked at everything; my position, what I did in the community . . .”
According to American Banker, “The 25 Most Powerful Women in Finance embraces more than performance; it is dedicated to the professional development of women executives across the banking and financial services industry. This award honors their business acumen, professional achievements and personal tenacity.”
She is married to Mike Moss, a Blackfoot High graduate who practices real estate law in Salt Lake City. They have five children ranging from ages 22 to 9.
“They keep me busy when I’m not at work,” she said with a laugh.
Moss credits her favorite teacher, Gary Elison, with providing her with some of the necessary skills to succeed in banking.
“As my high school career was winding down, I was looking forward to not taking any more difficult classes,” she recalled. “He pulled me aside and asked me if I was taking his advanced math class?”
When she answered in the negative, he strongly encouraged her to take it.
“Boy, was I glad I was able to get another year of math from a great teacher,” she said.
Several of her siblings still live in Bingham County. They include Randy Jones, Steve Jones, Pat Wolfley and Pam Shawver.