Few women in banking have a bigger job than Barbara Desoer.

She has led all major merger activities at Bank of America Corp. over the last three years, including deals for MBNA and U.S. Trust in 2006, LaSalle Bank in 2007 and Countrywide Financial in 2008. And in her first year as president of Bank of America Home Loans, Desoer is not only managing the integration of Countrywide, she is also ramping up BofA's servicing business by modifying loans of troubled borrowers and expanding its sales force to accommodate record-breaking origination volume.

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