CIT announced that CEO John A. Thain will retire effective March 31, 2016 and will be replaced by Ellen R. Alemany. CIT also said corporate controller Carol Hayles will be promoted to CFO effective November 1, 2015.
The board of directors of CIT Group announced that chief executive officer John A. Thain will retire effective March 31, 2016, and will continue to serve as chairman of the board of directors, and that CIT board member Ellen R. Alemany will become a member of the management team as vice chairman effective November 1, 2015, and upon Thain’s retirement become chief executive officer.
The board also announced that vice chairman Steven Mnuchin will step down from management effective March 31, 2016, and will remain as a member of the board of directors. The company announced the appointment of CIT corporate controller Carol Hayles as chief financial officer effective November 1, 2015.
Vice Admiral John Ryan, CIT lead director, speaking on behalf of the board of directors, said, “John has been a pivotal leader during one of the most challenging times in CIT’s more than 100 year history. Under his leadership he has overseen the successful corporate and financial restructuring of CIT. Since taking the helm in 2010, he returned CIT to profitability; rebuilt its management team; eliminated or refinanced approximately $31 billion of high-cost debt; oversaw the termination of the company’s written agreement with the Federal Reserve; returned more than $1.7 billion to shareholders; established a premier Internet Bank, and completed the acquisition of Direct Capital and OneWest Bank. On behalf of the board, employees and shareholders we extend our gratitude to John for his success and commitment to CIT.”
Ryan continued, “As part of our succession planning efforts, we are pleased to announce the appointment of Ellen Alemany as vice chairman of CIT as she transitions to her new role as CEO, a position she will assume on April 1, 2016. As an experienced and well respected leader in the commercial banking sector, she is well suited to assume these responsibilities and lead CIT forward. On behalf of the board we congratulate Ellen on her new position and look forward to working with her in the future.”
Thain commented, “It’s been a pleasure to lead an outstanding group of employees over the past five years and oversee CIT’s successful restructuring. Their hard work and commitment were critical to our efforts to rebuild and grow CIT and has helped ensure that CIT continues to play an important role in supporting small and middle market businesses, two sectors that remain the backbone of the U.S. economy.”
Alemany has been a CIT director since January 2014 and is a member of the Audit and Regulatory Compliance committees. She is also a member of the CIT Bank board of directors.
She is the former head of The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) Americas, the management structure that oversees RBS’ businesses in the Americas. She also served as chairman and chief executive officer for RBS Citizens Financial Group. Prior to RBS, Alemany served as chief executive officer for Global Transaction Services of Citigroup. She held a number of senior positions during her tenure at Citigroup, including executive vice president for the Commercial Business group and president and CEO of CitiCapital. She also held a number of executive positions in Citigroup’s Global Corporate Bank, including customer group executive of North American markets, Global Industry head of Media and Communications, U.S. industry head of Consumer Products and executive vice president of Citibank and Customer Group executive for the Global Relationship Bank in Europe, based in London.
Alemany received her MFA in finance from Fordham University. She serves on the boards of Fidelity National Information Services, Automatic Data Processing and the Center for Discovery.
As CFO, Hayles will serve as the company’s principal financial officer and oversee all financial operations including the Accounting, Planning, Tax, Treasury and Investor Relations departments.
Previously, she served as executive vice president and corporate controller where she was the company’s principal accounting officer responsible for the company’s accounting functions, SEC and regulatory reporting and the associated controls activities.
Prior to CIT, Hayles spent 24 years at Citigroup where she served as deputy controller, leading the SEC and regulatory reporting functions. Before this, she held various leadership positions in finance, including senior analyst in Investor Relations, chief financial officer of Citibank’s e-Business, CFO of Citigroup’s Global Relationship Bank and CFO of Citibank Canada. During her tenure in Canada, she also worked in internal audit, real estate lending and other finance positions. She began her career at Price Waterhouse in Toronto.