Suffolk Bancorp in New York Names Bluver CEO

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Looking to move forward after recent accounting issues forced it to restate its 2010 earnings, Suffolk Bancorp in Riverhead, N.Y., has hired a new chief executive to replace J. Gordon Huszagh.

The $1.6 billion-asset company announced Tuesday that Howard C. Bluver, a former regulator and a longtime New York-area banker and consultant, has taken over as president and CEO, effective immediately.

Huszagh, a 29-year Suffolk veteran who had been president and CEO since February 2009, said he was stepping aside because he believes "that a change in leadership is in the best interest of our loyal shareholders."

Suffolk announced over the summer that it had identified weaknesses in its accounting for loan losses and, after a four-month internal review, restated its 2010 earnings that reflected a much smaller profit than it first reported. The company is now in full compliance with regulators and the Nasdaq, which had threatened on several occasions to delist the company's shares because it was delinquent in filing financial reports.

The new CEO, Bluver, most recently ran a financial-services consulting firm on Long Island and has been a member of the board of directors at the Bank of Georgetown in Washington, D.C., since 2005. He had previously been the general counsel and chief enterprise risk officer at the $32 billion-asst Greenpoint Financial Corp. and is a former deputy general counsel at the Office of Thrift Supervision.

In a news release, Bluver said that with Suffolk now current on its financial reporting "it is time to focus on its customers and the communities it has been an integral part of for over a century. We are open for business and ready to move forward."

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