In 1993, Heritage Commerce Corp. sought Brad L. Smith's advice on starting a bank. This month the fast-growing San Jose, Calif., banking company named Mr. Smith chairman.

Mr. Smith, who helped found South Valley National Bank in 1982, will spearhead Heritage's expansion efforts in the Bay Area. He is also the new president and chief executive officer of Heritage's soon-to-open bank subsidiary in the booming South Valley, his old stomping ground.

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