BMO Financial Group CEO Bill Downe has shared his intention to retire from the post on October 31, 2017. The bank’s board will appoint Chief Operating Officer Darryl White as Downe’s successor, effective November 1, 2017.
Downe will serve as CEO for the remainder of fiscal 2017 and will work closely with White to ensure a smooth succession.
“The leadership team we have assembled represents an exceptional combination of strengths and is among the most capable in the industry. They are achievement oriented, act early on business opportunities and have driven strong performance in the businesses,” Downe said. “Individually and collectively, this team put the bank on a path of sustained growth, and Darryl is eminently qualified to lead them further down that path. Darryl possesses a deep understanding of the financial industry. His command of the bank’s fundamental performance drivers and what constitutes opportunity for the organization is distinctive.”
White has progressed through a series of key leadership roles at BMO. Currently, he provides strategic leadership for the bank’s Personal, Commercial and Wealth businesses across North America and globally. Additionally, White is a director of BMO Financial, the entity that has overall responsibility for the activities of the bank in the U.S. Prior to being appointed COO, White served as group head, BMO Capital Markets. White has spent considerable time in the U.S. deepening the group’s strategy and U.S. presence.
“I am energized by the opportunities ahead both for BMO’s customers and for our employees. Bill Downe’s leadership has been extraordinary on every level. I think I speak for everyone at BMO when I say we are extremely fortunate to have such an accomplished chief executive officer leading the bank,” White said. “I am deeply appreciative of the board’s confidence and look forward to spending the remainder of the fiscal year working alongside Bill. The bank’s leadership team is first-rate and BMO employees are, quite simply, the greatest. I also look forward to working with them and doing my part as we continue to build on our momentum.”