Gateway Bank of Southwest Florida has appointed the founder of a rival Sarasota bank to its executive team.

The $227 million-asset Gateway has named Brian Hall executive vice president and director of wealth management, according to a press release Tuesday.

Hall founded Sabal Palm Bank, an $88 million-asset company, in 2006 and led the bank for the next eight years. In February the company completed a $5.6 million stock offering and installed board member Neil McCurry as chief executive. Hall continued to serve as president and as a director until resigning in August to assess other opportunities, according to the release.

Hall has a long history with Gateway's president and chief executive, Shaun Merriman. Merriman, the former president and CEO of SouthTrust Corp. in Sarasota, recruited Hall as a senior lender in 2001.

"When [Hall] shared with me he was leaving Sabal Palm, I jumped at the opportunity to have him join us at Gateway Bank," Merriman said in the release.

In his new position at Gateway, Hall assumes the responsibilities of senior vice president Rick Zimmerman, who headed Gateway's private wealth subsidiary. Zimmerman resigned in May and now serves as vice president of commercial banking at Capitol Bank in Madison, Wis., according to his LinkedIn page.

Gateway is a subsidiary of Gateway Financial Holdings of Florida.

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