Susan P. Haney, one of the most prominent executives in the U.S. private banking business, is resigning from Bank of Boston Corp.
Ms. Haney, 47, who currently holds the title of group executive for domestic asset management, informed her staff on Monday that she will leave the bank by the end of the month, a spokesman confirmed.
The spokesman declined to say why Ms. Haney was leaving, saying only that she is pursuing other opportunities. Ms. Haney was traveling and could not be reached for comment.
Ms. Haney, who joined BankBoston from Boston Co. in 1990, oversaw BankBoston's entire asset management business until September. At that time, international asset management was placed under executive vice president Guilliaem "Rusty" Aertsen 4th, who previously ran the bank's capital markets business.
The spokesman said the domestic asset management group - responsible for domestic private client accounts, institutional trusts, and mutual funds - will report to Mr. Aertsen after Ms. Haney leaves, at least temporarily. "No plans are written in stone just yet," he said. "When someone at Susan's level leaves, it's a process."
Ms. Haney has been widely credited with helping BankBoston marshal services for high-net-worth customers into a cohesive business unit - a strategy that placed BankBoston in the vanguard of an industry trend, and helped the bank double its private client assets in six years to $24 billion.
"Susan is most noted for having brought an integrated structure to the private banking process at Bank of Boston," said David Ross Palmer, a private banking consultant. "She learned that by observation at the Boston Co. and applied those lessons at the Bank of Boston."
Ms. Haney spent 19 years at Boston Co., which is now a unit of Mellon Bank Corp. She is the co-chairman of the planning committee for the American Bankers Association's 1997 trust and private banking conference.
The private banking chief told her employees Monday that she would be leaving the bank, but higher-ranking executives apparently had known for some time that Ms. Haney did not want to stay with BankBoston after the company closed its merger with BayBanks Inc.
"The decision was hers. She's been chatting with senior management for a while," a bank spokesman said.
"Coincidentally, at the time BankBoston announced the reorganization (in September), Susan was exploring other opportunities outside the bank," he added.
This year, BankBoston's private bank continued to expand under Ms. Haney, opening six new offices in New York, Connecticut, and Florida. In addition to those states, BankBoston has principal private banking offices in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, London, Argentina, and Brazil.
In October, the private banking division entered an alliance with PaineWebber Inc. PaineWebber brokers in New England now refer their wealthy clients to the bank for trust management and services.
BankBoston said the asset management businesses would continue to expand by following Ms. Haney's initiatives. "The last thing we're doing is de-emphasizing the private banking business," said Paul Diesel, the bank's strategic planning executive.