Merrill Lynch & Co. has named Joseph J. Murin president of its Lender's Service Inc.

The unit was acquired in June by Merrill Lynch's private client group. It will support Merrill Lynch Credit Corp., the brokerage firm's mortgage and consumer credit subsidiary.

Michael A. Johnston, chairman and chief executive of Merrill Lynch Credit, said Mr. Murin's role would be to oversee a high level of customer service and "lead LSI toward the creation of the paperless mortgage process - the loan origination highway of the future."

Mr. Murin has 25 years of mortgage and banking experience and previously was chief marketing officer and executive vice president for client services at LSI, which Merrill bought from the now defunct Lomas Mortgage USA.

Lender's Service Inc., based in Coraplis, Pa., employs more than 500. It maintains a network of independent real estate appraisers, abstractors, and closing agents who provide appraisal, title agency, and closing-management services.

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