Seattle FHLBank's CEO To Step Down in March

Norman Rice is retiring as president and chief executive of the Seattle Federal Home Loan Bank and he plans to step down on March 15.

The Seattle bank, which is operating under a supervisory agreement, announced Mr. Rice's departure last month - a few days after it disclosed that earnings remain under "pressure" and it skipped paying a fourth-quarter dividend. Until an interim CEO is named, executive vice president David Bley will lead the bank's management team.

"On behalf of the board, I want to personally thank Norm for his hard work and dedication to the more than 370 financial institutions that belong to this cooperative," vice-chairman Mike Daly said. "Norm was unwavering in his commitment to building stronger local communities and economies."

Mr. Rice did not attend a recent winter meeting of the Council of Federal Home Loan Banks in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. But council president John von Seggern said he will be missed. "He was a great advocate for affordable housing," Mr. von Seggern said.

Mr. Rice served as the FHLBanks' point man on GSE regulatory reform last year. He testified several times before the House and Senate Banking Committees on legislation to strengthen the regulation and federal oversight of the Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the 12 FHLBanks. Mr. Rice was the mayor of Seattle before joining the Seattle bank six years ago.

Meanwhile, the Seattle FHLBank is in the process of building retained earnings and it declared a first-quarter dividend of 1.63% on its Class B (1) stock payable on March 31. It paid a 3.5% dividend in the third quarter before signing a Dec. 10 supervisory agreement with the Federal Housing Finance Board.

"The Seattle Bank expects earnings will remain under pressure," the bank said in the dividend announcement.

Under the supervisory agreement, the Seattle bank is required to build retained earnings, limit the growth of its Mortgage Purchase Program, and submit a three-year capital and business plan to the Finance Board by Feb. 28.

Copyright 2005 SourceMedia, Inc. All Rights Reserved. http://www.sourcemedia.com http://www.mortgageservicingnews.com

Next in News ►