Bankwell Financial Group in New Canaan, Conn., didn't have to look far to find a permanent leader.

The $900 million-asset company said in a press release Friday that Christopher Gruseke has become its president and chief executive. Gruseke, a founding investor in Bankwell, was hired last month as the company's chief strategic officer.

Bankwell said last month that Gruseke was being considered for the CEO vacancy created last fall when Peyton Patterson resigned shortly after it was revealed that a judge had ordered her to pay more than $350,000 in unpaid credit card bills. Blake Drexler, Bankwell's chairman, had been filling in temporarily while the company sought out a permanent replacement for Patterson.

Gruseke's financial services experience includes serving as a member of CRT Capital's executive committee and as a chief operating officer at Greenwich Capital Markets.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.