Home to Johns Hopkins University and the Baltimore Museum of Art, Charles Village is known as an active and diverse community where residents pride themselves on knowing and getting along with their neighbors.
About two months ago, the culturally and educationally, rich section of Baltimore welcomed Kelly Fox, the new manager at PNC’s Charles Village branch.
Although he is very familiar with the area, Fox is eager to get to know his neighbors better. He also wants them to get to know him.
“I grew up in Northeast Baltimore, right here in this area where I’m now managing the branch,” said Fox, who is about to celebrate his 25th wedding anniversary.
Fox graduated from Morgan State University and has been in the banking business for 18 years. He has also made his mark as a community activist, fighting for the betterment of Northeast Baltimore and beyond. Fox once ran to become the state delegate of his district and even though that campaign didn’t result in an election victory, he has continued his activism.
“I have a community center on 25th Street and so I’m really rooted in this community,” he said.
Fox is also excited to be one of the faces of PNC in Charles Village.
“At PNC, it’s all about culture. The [bank] fosters that kind of environment where everybody’s happy, and where everyone wants to go the extra mile for the people we serve,” Fox said.
It was a no-brainer for Fox when he received the opportunity to work for PNC, he said.
“When the opportunity came, I jumped in,” Fox said, adding that the bank’s longstanding commitment to diversity served as a major draw.
“One thing that’s really exciting to me is my boss, Karen Brooms. She’s African American and she knows the community, and she really makes an effort to reach out to all parts of Baltimore City, not just certain demographics,” Fox said. “It’s important to her that we have a diversified approach to our strategic plan that’s around helping to deepen our relationships with our clients.
“That really stands out. I really applaud her for her efforts.”
Among Fox’s goals is to build partnerships in Charles Village with churches, small businesses and the community itself.
“We want to give financial wellness workshops, we want to be out there volunteering and not just here opening accounts. We want to be a partner where we can holistically empower this district,” Fox said. “It’s all about empowering our community and it’s about truly helping people because we don’t just want to be here to push products but we want to see people doing better. We’re not the typical bank— where it’s all about trying to package things to people.”
Fox says that the recent political banter that has played out in the national media about some negative aspects of Baltimore doesn’t take away his or PNC’s mission of being integral to the community.
“I grew up here and so I really understand that there is a character about this community that a lot of people who have not been born and raised in this community don’t really see,” Fox said. “And it’s my goal to make sure to show that the very fiber of what this community is all about comes to the forefront.
“That’s about people loving one another and people supporting one another.”