HONOLULU — The Independent Community Bankers of America stuck with a winning formula at this year's convention, bringing in a hall of fame football player for the second year in a row to motivate attendees.
Jerry Rice, who played most of his career as a wide receiver with the San Francisco 49ers, was among its featured speakers in Hawaii. One of his most famous former teammates, quarterback Joe Montana, starred at the 2013 conference in Las Vegas.
During an interview-style conversation Wednesday, Rice discussed his lengthy NFL career, winning three Super Bowls, the youth foundation he helped create and his second-place finish on "Dancing with the Stars."
He offered career advice to community bankers, drawing from his personal and professional experiences. His biggest nugget of wisdom: rely on expertise, hard work and hands-on efforts to succeed.
Rice was known during his pro career for meticulous preparation and grueling off-season conditioning. "I never wanted to shortchange myself," he said. "And I didn't want to take any shortcuts."
There was also a message for bankers who face criticism from naysayers. Rice, who retired in 2004, faced a lot of questions about his ability to play near the end of his 20-year career. "I didn't let those people get to me," he said. "Who were they to tell me what I couldn't do? It motivated me to prove them wrong."