Fielding a Shareholder Proposal
Brian Moynihan had serious business to discuss at Bank of America's annual shareholder meeting, which came just two weeks after the embarrassing revelation that the firm had been overestimating its capital levels by $4 billion. But the gathering quickly took on the qualities of a Comedy Central roast of the BofA CEO.
First there was mocking by investor and mainstay heckler Judy Koenick, who quizzed Moynihan on the types of light bulbs used by the bank. She was booed off by another woman, Peggy McMahon, who then declared, "I love you, Mr. Moynihan." (His response: "Between you and my mother, that's two of you.")
McMahon resurfaced during the Q&A to tell Moynihan that if he got the company's stock price higher, she'd marry him. Things got nuttier from there, as the Rev. Jesse Jackson, there to advocate for low-income households and seated next to McMahon, indicated his potential willingness to bless the marriage.
New Voice in Dover
Rodger Levenson, chief commercial banking officer at WSFS Bank in Wilmington, Del., was named chairman of the Delaware Bankers Association last month. He takes over for David Gillan, chairman and CEO of County Bank. Levenson has been on the DBA's board since 2011. "While the current and evolving regulatory environment presents its challenges, the DBA gives Delaware banks a stronger voice with our elected officials" in state and federal government, he says.
Cards exec Beverly Anderson joined Wells Fargo from American Express in 2012. Before that she'd been with Fleet and First USA, worked at the consulting firm Novantas and graduated from Harvard Business School. Yet she says all that experience alone likely would not have gotten her to her executive vice president perch. What made the difference, she tells American Banker in a recent interview, were the mentors and sponsors she met along the way.
Now she's calling for more bankers to fill similar roles and "pull people through," especially women and people of color. "People have to get tapped for roles that perhaps they'll grow into," she says. "Maybe I wouldn't be someone's first choice. But if we're deliberate about our desire to have a work force that looks like our customer base, then you'll have to make deliberate decisions about talent strategies and performance strategies."
40 Years and Counting
Fulton Bank of Lancaster, Pa., had three executives inducted last month into the Pennsylvania Bankers Association's "40-Year Club," which recognizes PBA members with more than four decades of service in the state's banking industry. This year's class included Gary Watts, who joined the industry in 1972, and Steve Ulrich, who joined in 1969. Both are vice presidents of commercial banking at Fulton, where they have been working since 1998. Also honored was Jill Carson, president and COO of Fulton Mortgage Co., who began her career at the bank in 1974 working summers as a teller.
All in the Family
The Federal Home Loan Bank of Dallas had to leave Texas to find its next president and CEO, but it didn't have to leave the FHLB system. Sanjay Bhasin, previously an EVP and group head of members and markets at the FHLB of Chicago, joined the Dallas bank on May 12. Chairman James Clayton cites Bhasin's "deep understanding of the funding, balance sheet and liquidity needs of community financial institutions." Before joining the FHLB in Chicago in 2004, he was with Bank One, managing interest rate risk associated with mortgage pipeline holdings.
Wednesday Afternoon Lights
Growing up in West Texas, Linda Zukauckas, the corporate controller for American Express, never dreamed she'd wind up in the spotlight at a hotel ballroom in New York. But that's where she was on a Wednesday in May, getting feted with other high-ranking female executives at "Aiming High: a Celebration of the Power of Women," an annual fundraiser for the nonprofit women's advocacy group Legal Momentum.
"Where I come from, the spotlights typically shine on Friday nights," noted Zukauckas, drawing laughs from the luncheon guests.
The honoree still had a bit of Texas with her that day her parents accompanied her to the event, as did her best friend from Austin. Zukauckas was introduced on stage by Ally Bank CEO Barbara Yastine, whom Zukauckas worked with closely when she was controller and chief accounting officer at Ally Financial before joining AmEx in 2011.