Region Executive, Eastern Community Bank, Wells Fargo
Dispatched to Charlotte, N.C., after Wells Fargo's acquisition of Wachovia, Laura Schulte has played a central role in making Wells a major retail force throughout the eastern half of the country.
The San Francisco-based institution would have been hard-pressed to find a better ambassador to the region. Schulte has spent 31 years with Wells and worked in finance, credit review and internal audit before taking on leadership roles in the community bank (which is how Wells refers to its retail and business banking operation).
Prior to her current role, she was president of Wells' home region in the West. In the East, where the bank has 2,700 branches and 32,000 employees, Schulte has overseen stronger household penetration and increased cross-selling of Wells Fargo products and services.
She also co-leads the retail bank's affluent segment strategy and is the executive advisor to Wells' Women's Team Member Network, which formed in 2009 with Schulte as executive sponsor.