Wisconsin Banking News

Weyers to succeed Hansen as Johnson Financial CEO; Associated Banc-Corp launches institutional investment management firm

Weyers to succeed Hansen as Johnson Financial CEO

Richard Hansen, chief executive officer of Racine-based Johnson Financial Group, will retire at the end of the year, and the company announced today that he will be succeeded by Russ Weyers, currently the president and chief operating officer of the firm.

“Dick joined our company 15 years ago when we were a small local enterprise,” said Helen Johnson-Leipold, chairman of Johnson Financial, the parent company of Johnson Bank. “He has significantly strengthened our banking and insurance businesses and has expanded the footprint and portfolio of our company. He’s built a very strong team of associates, giving us remarkable growth and success.”

Hansen and Weyers have worked together over the past 15 years, which should make Weyers’ transition into the CEO role smooth for the company and its employees, Johnson-Leipold said.

“Succession planning is very important for all of our family enterprises,” she said. “One of our keys to success is our people-focused values. And to find that in a leader in combination with the long-term thinking and acumen that Russ has is a great combination, something that is unique to the leaders of our companies.”

“We’ve kind of grown up here together,” Hansen said. “He’s participated in developing our vision proposition and has demonstrated to all of us his ability to deal with the dramatic change we’re going through while staying focused on the community.”

Although the company is facing changing financial regulations and challenging economic conditions, Weyers believes Johnson Financial will achieve significant future growth.

“We’re a financial company that follows the rules and treats our customers with respect,” he said. “It’s our job to figure out (new regulations) and follow them correctly. The (financial reform) bill will create new and unique challenges for us. We’re in an economic situation that no one knows (what will happen). But with the plan we have today and the people we have today, we will be successful.”

Associated Banc-Corp launches institutional investment management firm

Green Bay-based Associated Banc-Corp. has launched a new affiliate, Kellogg Asset Management LLC, a federally registered investment advisory firm that focuses on the needs of institutional investors.

Kellogg Asset Management’s target clients include corporations, endowments and foundations, financial intermediaries, insurance companies, municipalities, defined benefit pension funds and defined contribution retirement plans.

"Associated has a long history of working with institutional clients," said John Thayer, chief investment officer of Associated. "We believe there is a tremendous opportunity to build on our existing institutional business based on our record of producing competitive investment returns and rigorous risk management. In addition, the experience and expertise of our colleagues strengthens our team approach to serving our clients."

Kellogg Asset Management began managing institutional client accounts earlier this year after the transfer of investment management responsibilities for institutional clients from Associated Trust Company, N.A., an affiliated banking institution with trust powers.

The firm was named for Rufus B. Kellogg, who organized the Kellogg National Bank of Green Bay in 1874. Kellogg National Bank was the precursor of Associated Bank.

The firm has 12 employees, three of whom were hired in the last 12 months. All of its employees are in Green Bay.

Associated Trust Co. continues to manage trust accounts for high net worth individuals and fiduciary accounts. Kellogg was formed to handle institutional accounts.


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