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VOL. 124 | NO. 125 | Monday, June 29, 2009

SunTrust Exec’s Consulting Role Follows Other Leadership Changes

By Andy Meek

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William R. Reed Jr., vice chairman of Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks Inc., will retire at the end of August to work as a consultant for the bank with a focus on Memphis.

Reed has entered into a contract with the bank under which he’ll be paid $502,000 over the next two years. He’ll get office space in Memphis and will be expected to promote “the business interests of SunTrust and its affiliates both at the corporate level and, in particular, in the Memphis, Tenn., market,” according to SunTrust.

Reed formerly was in charge of SunTrust’s geographic banking organization.

Under the terms of his new arrangement, which the bank disclosed last week in a regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Reed also will get a seat on the SunTrust board of advisers in Memphis. He’ll work no more than 30 hours a month and is only bound to work in Memphis via a requirement that he attend meetings of the company’s Memphis board of advisers.

The company didn’t have any details about the work he’d be doing beyond what already has been released.

“I think it’s pretty much all included in the (regulatory) filing,” said SunTrust spokesman Mike McCoy. “That sums it up.”

Repositioning efforts

Reed has been vice chairman at SunTrust – which has $179 billion in assets and about 1,700 bank branches – since Oct. 1, 2004. From May 2003 to October 2004, he was president and chief executive officer of National Commerce Financial Corp., which merged with SunTrust in October 2004.

In addition to an independent contractor consulting agreement, SunTrust also has signed a non-compete agreement with Reed. For waiving any claims against the company, agreeing to not compete against it, solicit employees or disclose confidential information, he’ll receive a payment of $100,000 Sept. 1, 2011.

The agreement with Reed comes about a month after another major executive change in SunTrust’s Memphis ranks.

In early May, SunTrust announced Johnny B. Moore Jr. would succeed John Frazer June 1 as president and CEO of SunTrust Bank Memphis. Moore, a 17-year veteran of SunTrust, is the first black executive to hold the bank’s top spot in the city.

Moore most recently led the bank’s commercial line of business in the Memphis region. The bank’s Memphis and Mid-South market has 37 retail offices and 300 employees.

Frazer has gone to Georgia to assume the head of SunTrust’s Wealth and Investment Management line of business for the Greater Atlanta and North Georgia markets.

Frazer, who has worked for SunTrust for 20 years, will as an executive vice president now lead “sales and service efforts and the overall execution of business strategies” in Georgia, according to the bank.

SunTrust is one of the largest banks in the country and late last year got $4.9 billion in Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, funding.

Several weeks ago, the bank also seemingly emerged in a positive light from the federal government’s so-called “stress tests” of the nation’s largest banks. The bank was advised by the federal government it was generally well-capitalized but under a new regulatory standard still would need to add $2.2 billion in common equity.

SunTrust held the No. 3 spot on the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.’s most recent market share report for the Memphis area.

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