WARREN - Louis J. Dunham will take over as First Place Bank chief executive officer on Wednesday, bank board Chairman Samuel A. Roth announced late Monday afternoon.
Dunham will join the bank on an interim basis, subject to final non-objection from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the bank's primary regulator, officials said in a news release issued after the stock market's close.
First Place shares lost 10 cents, or 15.4 percent, to close at 55 cents in a day of widespread market weakness.
"I'm excited about joining First Place Bank as well as the local community," Dunham, a 38-year banking industry veteran, said in the release. "I've been impressed with the bank's history and commitment to community banking, and I look forward to working with the management team and associates to continue the tradition of providing a strong community banking presence for local customers."
"Lou has a good understanding of our leadership team, and the vetting process has been a mutually favorable experience," Roth said. "Our entire senior management team concurs that Lou is a great fit for our culture of community banking, and we look forward to welcoming him."
Roth said the bank got a "nice group of candidates," but didn't comment on the number of candidates. He said Dunham's compensation isn't being disclosed at this time.
The bank said Dunham has served as chief executive of several financial institutions, including Mutual Bank in Illinois, American Home Bank of Chicago and Ameribank in Florida. He has also served in other positions including chief credit officer and chief risk officer during his banking career.
Most recently, Dunham specialized in providing consultation services to banks through his company, CAMELSolutions of Lakeville, Pa.
Dunham replaces Steven R. Lewis, whom the board terminated April 20.
First Place in February 2011 began operating under a supervisory agreement with Office of Thrift Supervision, which said First Place has engaged in "unsafe or unsound practices."
It consented last July to cease-and-desist orders from OTS to find ways to strengthen key bank capital standards.
The company was delisted from the Nasdaq in November.
Regulators are requiring First Place to restate quarterly and annual financials within fiscal years ended June 30, 2010, 2009 and 2008, which it has yet to do, due to adjustments in the company's allowance for loan losses.
The losses stem largely from its 2005 acquisition of Southfield, Mich.,-based Franklin Bancorp. The purchase saddled the bank with loans that went sour during the global credit crisis that struck in 2007 and worsened through 2008.
In 2009, First Place took $75 million from the federal government's Troubled Assets Relief Program program to provide capital to increase lending.