First Western Bancorp of New Castle, Pa., promoted executive vice president Richard L. Stover to president.

Mr. Stover, 55, a 27-year banking veteran who joined First Western in 1996, succeeded Thomas J. O'Shane. Mr. O'Shane, 50, who had been president since 1991, remains chairman and chief executive officer.

The new president had been managing director of portfolio and credit in the corporate finance group of GE Capital Corp. in 1993-94. From 1991 to 1993 he had been executive vice president and chief credit officer of Equimark Corp., a Pittsburgh bank holding company that Integra Financial Corp. later bought. (National City bought Integra in 1996.) And earlier he had been an executive vice president at Bank of New England, which Fleet Financial Group bought in 1991, and worked at Mellon Bank.

More recently he had been a general partner of ARC Capital Ltd., a private merchant banking firm, and he had his own consulting firm, Stover & Associates.

Mr. Stover will be responsible for the daily management of $2.1 billion- asset First Western and its First Western Bank, First Western Trust Services Co., and First Western Insurance Services. He will also remain chief lending officer until a successor is named.

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