First Republic, Stearns Bank and CIBC: Bankers on the Move

Succession planning was a recurring theme during the past several weeks as banks made key personnel moves to either give themselves a new leader or line up a clear successor.

For example, though First Republic Bank in San Francisco extended the contract of its longtime Chairman and CEO, it also positioned its president, Gaye Erkan, to potentially succeed Herbert when he eventually retires.

In St. Cloud, Minn., Kelly Skalicky succeeded her father Norm Skalicky as CEO of Stearns Bank. The elder Skalicky had led the bank since 1964, and will remain its chairman.

Additionally, CIBC named a president and CEO of its U.S. bank, while First Defiance Financial in Defiance, Ohio, and Banc of California also named new leaders.

Scroll down for a list of this month's key executive moves.

Gaye Erkan, president of First Republic Bank
First Republic leadership: Change coming?
First Republic Bank in San Francisco extended the contract of its longtime Chairman and CEO James Herbert in February, but also expanded the role of a top executive who could potentially become Herbert’s successor.

The $99 billion-asset private banking and wealth management company said Herbert, 73, would remain CEO until Dec. 31, 2021, and serve as executive chairman until the end of 2028.

First Republic also announced that its president, Gaye Erkan, has been appointed to the board of directors, a move that could position the 39-year-old Erkan to succeed Herbert when he eventually retires.

The company said in a news release that Erkan’s appointment is “an important next step as we continue our leadership succession plan,” though a spokesman declined to comment further.

Erkan joined First Republic in 2014 as chief investment officer and co-chief risk officer. She was named chief deposit officer in 2016 and was promoted to president in 2017.
Kelly Skalicky
Stearns Bank top role stays in the family
Kelly Skalicky has succeeded her father as CEO of Stearns Bank in St. Cloud, Minn. The $2 billion-asset Stearns said in a press release that the elder Skalicky, who had led the bank since 1964, will remain its chairman.

Skalicky has been involved in Stearns since her childhood, when she spent Saturdays at the office with her dad. She was legal counsel to the bank after graduating from law school and joined the bank full time seven years ago, serving as a director and as general counsel.

She became the bank's president last year.

“I have full confidence in Kelly’s ability to lead Stearns Bank," Norm Skalicky said in the release.
Michael Capatides
CIBC names new U.S. CEO
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce has named a new CEO for its U.S. subsidiary.

The Toronto company said Michael Capatides, its chief administrative officer and general counsel, will take over as president and CEO of CIBC Bank USA on April 1.

Capatides, 63, will replace Larry Richman, who will transition to a new role as chair of of the U.S. region for CIBC Bank USA, which is based in Chicago.

Capatides joined CIBC in 1996 as general counsel and managing director of CIBC World Markets. He was named CIBC's general counsel in 1999 and was appointed chief administrative officer in 2014, a role in which he oversees strategy and corporate development.

Richman, 66, has served as head the U.S. operations since CIBC acquired The PrivateBancorp in mid-2017.
Steve Zandpour, the U.S. head of retail specialty sales at BMO Harris Bank in Chicago
BMO Harris picks specialty lines chief, three Midwestern executives
BMO Harris Bank in Chicago has promoted a regional president to a new post overseeing retail specialty lines and shuffled some of its other regional leaders.

Steve Zandpour, the new U.S. head of retail specialty sales, will oversee premier sales (wealth management services for the mass affluent), mortgage sales and small-business banking handled out of branches, the $123 billion-asset bank said. He has more than 20 years of experience and was mostly recently a regional president for the bank’s northern Chicago market.

The bank also named Chris Michalski regional president of Minnesota, Kansas, Missouri and Indiana; Bernard Narine regional president of the Chicago south region; and Tony Tintinalli regional president of the Chicago north region. Each will oversee the branch networks in their respective markets. One of their priorities will be revamping digital banking, BMO Harris said.
Vince Liuzzi
First Defiance in Ohio picks outsider
First Defiance Financial in Defiance, Ohio, has hired an outsider to run its bank.

The $3.2 billion-asset company said in a press release that Vince Liuzzi became president of First Federal Bank of the Midwest on March 4.

Liuzzi succeeded Don Hileman, who remains CEO of the company. Liuzzi recently was chief banking officer of DNB First in Downingtown, Pa.
Signage is displayed outside a Wells Fargo bank branch in Los Angeles.
Wells taps KeyCorp exec for risk management
Wells Fargo has hired a former KeyCorp executive to help shore up its risk management in the wake of various scandals.

Maria Teresa Tejada joined the San Francisco bank as chief strategic enterprise risk officer, the company said. She will report to Chief Risk Officer Amanda Norton, a former JPMorgan Chase executive who was hired in May.

Tejada will have responsibility for enterprise risk reporting, as well as oversight of strategic risk, reputation risk and international risk, according to the company.

Tejada had worked at Cleveland-based Key since 2013, most recently as deputy chief risk officer. She previously spent 16 years at Goldman Sachs.
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Banc of California names new CEO
Banc of California will soon have a new CEO.

The $10 billion-asset company said in a press release that Jared Wolff will also become its president, effective March 18. Wolff will also join Banc of California’s board.

Wolff will succeed Doug Bowers, who will stay at Banc of California until the end of April to assist with the transition.

Wolff previously served as general counsel at City National Bank, where he managed the bank’s legal and corporate administrative group. He once was president of PacWest Bancorp’s bank.

While at PacWest, Wolff handled acquisitions, including the $2.3 billion purchase of CapitalSource in 2013.
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Hilltop down to one CEO
Hilltop Holdings in Dallas soon will have just one CEO.

The $10 billion-asset company said Alan White, its vice chairman and co-CEO, will retire on April 1. White, who started Hilltop's PlainsCapital Bank unit in 1988, will also step down from the company’s board and other leadership roles.

Jeremy Ford, Hilltop's president and co-CEO, will lead the company. Jerry Schaffner will remain president and CEO of PlainsCapital.
Citi sign
Citi losing two top executives
Citi's head of U.S. retail banking and mortgage is retiring in April, and its head of digital client experience is leaving the bank for another firm.

Will Howle, 53, will retire in April and Alice Milligan will depart in mid-March for a job outside the company, according to a memo distributed to employees on Friday.

Citigroup has not announced replacements for either executive, and the company “will immediately establish slates [of candidates] to fill both roles,” a spokeswoman said.

Howle has worked for Citi since 2010 and has led the U.S. retail bank since 2014. He has also had leadership roles in commercial banking at Citi. He previously worked for Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Wachovia.

Milligan joined Citi in 2014 and has helped drive the company’s efforts to sign up more mobile users, among other projects. She is leaving to accept "an exciting new opportunity outside Citi that advances her long-term personal and career objectives," the memo said.