Wintrust Financial CEO Ed Wehmer
The Chicago-area company has shown a willingness to pursue small branch deals and expand in nearby Wisconsin as it looks for liquidity and lending opportunities.
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Robert Wilmers, chairman and CEO of M&T Bank, told shareholders at its annual meeting that times are tough for banking and that the continued delay of its Hudson City deal, and associated high costs, are disappointing. But he insisted that the deal is still worth doing.

The company, which was an active acquirer before the financial crisis, has returned to its roots after a long hiatus brought on by the downturn and integration problems. Archie Brown, who became CEO in 2008, says the company is taking a more disciplined approach this time.

Joseph Stilwell used a photo of the then-chairman of Harvard Illinois snoozing at last year's annual meeting as part of his fight for representation on the board. Harvard's board accused Stilwell of waging his battle "in the gutter."

Claude Davis, First Financialís president and CEO
Insight, based in Ohio, wanted to raise capital to expand its operations. Instead, it ended up talking to suitors and agreeing to sell to First Financial in Cincinnati.

Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf
The San Francisco bank is mainly counting on organic loan growth and improved asset quality to drive future profits, but it would also be open to acquisitions, especially in the credit card in wealth management businesses.

Camden Fine, president of the Independent Community Bankers of America (Bloomberg News)
The Independent Community Bankers of America is taking issue with Wall Street's opinion that banks need scale to survive. The group has urged members to tune out "defeatist talk" about smaller banks.
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The Greenville, S.C., company hired John Poelker as interim CEO and ousted its top executives less than two weeks after allegations of financial mismanagement surfaced. Poelker, known for stabilizing struggling banks, could be tasked with cleaning Certus up for a buyer.
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Reps. Maxine Waters (left), and Barney Frank (Bloomberg News)
Barney Frank, Maxine Waters and nine other Democrats urged financial regulators in 2010 to consider Certus' charter as a way to create a large minority-run bank headed by managers of "unquestioned character." That bank's big problems since suggest that, at minimum, the vote of confidence was misguided.
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Hod Kosman, CEO of Platte Valley Financial
The rising costs of regulatory compliance, health insurance and technology prompted Mountain Valley Bank to merge with a company that once was its biggest investor.

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