Talbot in Maryland Names New CEO, Clashes with an Ex-Director

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The president and chief executive of Talbot Bank of Easton, Md., will step down at yearend and an insider will take over.

William W. Duncan, who has served in those roles since 2006, will retire Dec. 31, the $709 million-asset bank said Wednesday. Patrick M. Bilbrough, an executive vice president, will succeed Duncan. Talbot is a unit of Shore Bancshares (SHBI).

Shore has struggled this year, reporting a $4.6 million loss for the first nine months of the year. In the third quarter Shore lost $1.8 million after increasing its provision for credit losses by almost 70%. Its board voted to suspend its one-cent-per-share quarterly cash dividend after a $3 million loss in the first quarter.

William E. Sylvester, Jr. resigned this month from the boards of Shore and its other banking unit, CNB in Centreville, Md. In a letter to the board filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Sylvester cited concerns over management appointments that “were not based on objective criteria.” He also said he decided to step down because of acquisitions that were not well executed, credit decisions that resulted in high loan losses at Talbot and funding decisions that could lead to future liquidity issues.

 Shore replied in an SEC filing that it “respectfully disagrees” with Sylvester and notes that all of Sylvester’s concerns related to circumstances from before his appointment to Shore’s board. The company denied that any executive or director acted improperly and said Sylvester’s concerns related to differences of opinion between Sylvester and the board and management.

Sylvester had been on the board of CNB since 2002 and joined the Shore board this year.

The new CEO, Bilbrough, 48, joined Talbot in May 2011 and has been responsible for general administration with a focus on credit improvement. Previously he was a market executive for PNC Bank where he oversaw an 11-county region and was a commercial banking team leader for a five-county area.

"A key to our future success has been the development of a succession plan for senior management," W. Moorhead Vermilye, the chairman of Talbot, said in a news release. "We are very pleased to be able to promote from within the organization a talented career banker with such a diverse background who is a longtime member of our local community."

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