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Dan Burns

Rochester Regional President, M&T Bank

Years in current role: 17 as Regional President; 36 with M&T Bank

What has been your organization’s biggest success over the past year?

At M&T Bank, our biggest successes are always measured by how we make a difference in people’s lives — for our customers and our communities. We’ve been a bank for communities since our earliest days in Rochester, directing charitable investments to causes that matter locally and designing our products and services for the unique needs of our market. However, what’s exciting for me is how our company has really leaned into our community-banking model to ensure we’re continuously meeting local needs here in Rochester, as M&T expands to new markets. This service model has been essential to our work to help local businesses grow and help our neighbors thrive, and I’m confident it will continue to drive our success going forward.

What are your expectations for the next 6-12 months?

The next 12 months will bring unique opportunities to foster sustained growth here in Rochester — but like every year, the months ahead are sure to bring a few challenges that will require us to collaborate around solutions. While supply chain issues, talent attraction and inflation are still headwinds, consistent investment from regional businesses and the public sector has fostered stability and steady growth. Importantly, given the federal and state governments’ focus on innovation-led economic development, Rochester is well-positioned for further investment thanks to our legacy of technological innovation and the impressive research and discovery happening here today.

What advice would you give somebody just starting out in your industry?

Never stop learning — our industry and the communities we serve are constantly evolving. It’s essential that we stay ahead of curve with the latest technology and service models, and we need to remain connected with the community to learn about needs and challenges so we can do our part to create and promote solutions. Building on that point, people in our industry need to understand the importance of making a difference in our community. Get involved in causes and organizations you care about and share your time and talents. In addition to providing a greater sense of purpose, community involvement helps grow your network and deepen your understanding of the ways you and your work in banking can uplift people and strengthen organizations.

What is one personal goal you have for the next year?

It’s so important to connect with people — to get to know them, understand what they care about and learn what drives them. So, in the year ahead, I want to connect with even more of my colleagues at M&T Bank, even more of our clients and even more of our community partners. With ongoing dialogue and idea-sharing, we’ll learn from each other and find more ways to collaborate to strengthen our community.

What are your favorite things about Rochester?

I love Rochester’s arts and cultural scene and our commitment to uplifting our community. It’s a big reason why our region is such a vibrant and attractive place to live. From the Rochester Jazz Festival, CMAC, the RPO and Eastman School of Music to the Memorial Art Gallery, George Eastman Museum and ArtisanWorks to Geva Theatre, the RBTL and so much more, Rochester has it all — and the best part is that our creative communities are constantly developing outreach and education programs to engage, inspire and uplift young people and marginalized communities. It’s an ongoing effort to share our love of the arts to create opportunities for our neighbors. Our team at M&T is grateful to have the opportunity to support their work through charitable giving, sponsorships and volunteer initiatives.

This profile is part of Rochester Business Journal's Power 30 Banking & Finance list for 2022. Information used in this profile was sourced from the honoree. View the full list at


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