Michael Hegarty, the former Chase Manhattan Corp. vice chairman who resigned last month in a management shake-up, has been named chief operating officer of Equitable Cos., effective Jan. 19.

Mr. Hegarty, 53, who will also serve as president and chief operating officer of Equitable Life Assurance Society of the U.S., follows his longtime mentor, Edward D. Miller, to the insurance company. Mr. Miller was named president and chief executive officer of Equitable Cos. and its main unit five months ago.

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