Wells Fargo has named Senior Vice President Jeff Smith to succeed Perry Hilzendeger as head of home loan servicing following Hilzendeger's earlier appointment to head of retail home lending.

Smith previously was responsible for servicing within the company's consumer lending real estate compliance and operational risk group. His new title is pending board approval.

"Our servicing team plays a critical role in helping our customers through their homeownership journey, and Jeff is uniquely qualified to build on the momentum and solid foundation that is already in place," Michael DeVito, head of Wells Fargo Home Lending, said in a press release.

Wells Fargo executive hires

"He has a proven track record of leading high-performing teams, hands-on experience managing large customer-support organizations, and strong relationships across Wells Fargo and our industry. These strengths, combined with his deep operations and risk management experience, will help us continue to evolve our business."

Smith's consumer lending experience extends to home equity products, credit cards and personal loans, as well as home mortgages. He started his career as a collections associate at JPMorgan Chase in 1987 and later was named a vice president. He has been at Wells Fargo since 1997.

Executive positions have been shifting in Wells' mortgage unit since the bank fired consumer lending head Franklin Codel over an improper discussion and named Mary Mack, a retail banking executive, to lead the company's consumer lending and consumer banking business. DeVito became head of home lending at first on an interim basis and then more permanently.

Gui Kahl, senior vice president for servicing change delivery, previously had responsibility for Hilzendeger's job on an interim basis.

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