CHICAGO, June 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Associated Bank has created a national Specialized Financial Services Group to capitalize on opportunities in targeted industry segments. The bank announced today the addition of several specialized industry experts who will lead this effort. Mark Sander, executive vice president and head of commercial banking for Associated Bank, made the announcement, stating, "The addition of these industry experts is an initial step in building our business in specialized industries where we believe we have the potential to grow. They know these targeted niches well, including the major players and the dynamics of the industry."
John A. Utz has been named Executive Vice President, Specialized Financial Services Director. Utz will be based in Milwaukee and will oversee the development of the national Specialized Financial Services Group. Utz recently joined Associated Bank from Union Bank in Los Angeles, where he held a number of senior management positions in commercial and corporate banking during the past 16 years. Most recently, he held the dual positions of senior vice president, head of capital markets for Union Bank and president of UnionBanCal Equities.
Peter J. Bulandr has joined the company as Specialized Financial Services Market Manager. Bulandr will be based in Chicago. He will lead a group of bankers focused on providing commercial banking services to companies in the insurance industry.
Bulandr brings a long history in commercial banking to Associated Bank. He joins the company from Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago, where he headed up the bank's insurance industry sector. Previously, Bulandr served as senior vice president and product delivery manager for Bank of America, Chicago. Other experience includes a number of progressively responsible positions in commercial banking during nearly 15 years at LaSalle Bank, Chicago.
Christopher J. O'Brien has also been named Specialized Financial Services Market Manager. O'Brien, who will be based in Chicago, will manage a team focused on secondary education. He will also assist in the development of the company's overall specialized industries activities.
O'Brien has more than 20 years of commercial banking experience. Prior to joining Associated, he held the position of senior vice president and senior client manager, middle market banking group at Bank of America. Previously, he served as senior vice president and division head in the specialized finance group at LaSalle Bank, where he managed a team responsible for originating and growing relationships with private post secondary schools and universities across the United States.
Associated Bank is part of Associated Banc-Corp (Nasdaq: ASBC), a diversified bank holding company with total assets of $23 billion. Headquartered in Green Bay, Wisconsin, Associated has 290 banking offices serving approximately 160 communities in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Illinois. Associated offers a full range of traditional banking services and a variety of other financial products and services. More information about Associated Banc-Corp is available at www.AssociatedBank.com.
Contact: Janet Ford
Senior Vice President
Public Relations Director
SOURCE Associated Bank