Aguirre on Board

Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA has added Eduardo Aguirre Jr. to the board of Compass Bancshares Inc., its U.S. retail banking arm.Mr. Aguirre, a former Bank of America Corp. executive, has held prominent positions on both sides of the Atlantic in recent years. He was the U.S. ambassador to Spain and Andorra under the George W. Bush administration.

He retired in 2001 as the president of B of A's international private bank. He has also served as the director of Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services and the acting chairman and chief executive of the Export-Import Bank.

The new director will provide the board with "diplomacy and veteran banking experience," Jose Maria Garcia Meyer, the chairman of Compass, said in a press release. "Eduardo is an accomplished leader with outstanding experience both in the U.S. and abroad."

Last month BBVA added Eddie Whitworth, the former chairman of Laredo National Bank, to Compass' board. BBVA bought the Texas bank in 2005.

Majoring in Banking

New York Community Bank Corp. says it has found a way to deal with branch positions with high turnover.The $32 billion-asset Westbury company is poised to cut the ribbon a branch of its Queens County Savings Bank today on the campus of Queens College in Flushing.

The branch — New York Community's first on a college campus — will serve as a recruitment center for tellers, customer representatives, automated teller machine attendants, and other positions at its 178 branches in the New York region.

New York Community is not really trying to boost its overall head count, but it is looking for reliable people for entry-level jobs that have a high-turnover rate, Robert Wann, its executive vice president and chief operating officer, said in an interview Thursday. "We have found that college students have been very reliable. They are computer-oriented, and they are really good" employees. The students will receive priority for full-time positions in the company's lending, finance, and other divisions after graduation, he said.

Last spring New York Community started a program to recruit students at St. John's University, Long Island University, Nassau Community College, and a number of other area colleges. So far it has recruited about 160 students, Mr. Wann said. The Queens College branch is the next step in the program, he said, and more college branches could follow. New York Community has about 3,000 employees, he said. It had 2,800 at the end of 2007.

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