Head of Commercial Banking

Publicly Traded Bank
Central IL
5X the Wealth Management Business in 5 years
Role Focus
Lead, Transform and Expand the Wealth Management Business
Total Placements with this client

How We Helped - Placed Head of Commercial Banking leading to a Multi-Role engagement

A Midwestern regional bank was seeking a new Head of Commercial Banking in order to evolve their regional banking model from a traditional community banking structure.

The CEO had 5 regional presidents reporting directly to him that were responsible for the entire bank in their regions, which was dominating his time administratively. Based on their aggressive growth plan, the Board decided to begin a search for a Head of Commercial Banking to lead the regional presidents, enhance the strategy and lead the tactical development of their go-to-market strategy and product offerings. This position was critical to the growth of their regional banking model, with an acute focus on well-capitalized banking, inclusive of wealth management and commercial banking.

The client needed an executive search firm with a deep specialization and understanding of the commercial banking leadership landscape, but it was critically important that the firm also had cultural expertise of the Midwest, and a network of talent either in the Midwest, or ready to relocate there.

SLATE was selected and retained to conduct the search over multiple large search firm competitors based on our financial services sector specialization coupled with our specific focus on working with clients in the Midwest and in smaller market cities.

“As we considered a search firm to hire, our board typically wanted to see the big, well known name recruiting firms…but instead of dealing with recruiters in New York who have never been here (or don’t want to be), we chose to hire SLATE because of their regional expertise and smaller market focus, and it was a huge success.”

Led by Managing Partner Matt Huffman, we tailored the search to provide a clear and complete picture of the commercial banking leadership talent landscape nationally, through our intel of executive talent based on years of relationship building.  This specifically includes executives that we knew were open to relocating to the Midwest, and would thrive at the bank culturally based on our cultural assessment of the institution.

Midwest Focus

As Midwest natives, we know the culture from Omaha to Chicago to Cincinnati and use that knowledge to your benefit when placing executives in the right role.

Tell us what’s on your mind. We’ll use our extensive network and cutting-edge technology to find the best solution for you.

Andre Arbelaez
Strategic Advisor

Andre Arbelaez is a global technology executive and a leader in the hispanic community as the President & CEO of the Hispanic C-Suite Corporate Council (HC3), a non-profit organization focused on the promotion, advocacy, connectivity and development of the hispanic executive. 

Named by Latino Leaders magazine as a “Technology Diversity Guru”,  Andre is a frequent speaker on technology, diversity and inclusion as well as Smart Cities and has spoken at events from the White House to the United Nations headquarters. He serves as Oakland University’s (Rochester, Michigan) Chairman of the Advisory Board for the Information and Decision Sciences Department. 

He also serves on the Board of Directors of iWorker Innovations, a Michigan company driving equality and designing benefits tailored to America’s fast-growing independent workforce. Andre has had global technology executive roles with Globant, Argentina’s largest technology firm and Softtek USA, Mexico’s largest private nearshore firm, as their SVP and Chief Strategy Officer. 

He also has served in leadership roles in global business development with T-Systems and Covisint LLC, the automotive global portal owned by General Motors, Ford, DaimlerChrysler, PSA and Renault. Andre received the 2018 Maestro Award in Leadership in August, 2018 and was named one of the “101 Most Influential Latino Leaders in 2017” by Latino Leaders Magazine. He received the 2016 Alumni of the Year award from Northwood University in Midland, Michigan.

Matt Huffman
Managing Partner

Matt is the Managing Partner of SLATE and is fully focused on all aspects of financial services and industrial manufacturing at the board and executive level.  For over 20 years, he has designed and executed talent acquisition strategies for financial services firms ranging from Banks and Wealth Management firms, to Global Asset Managers and Insurance companies.  SLATE was founded by Matt in 2016 and exists to serve premier financial services firms in the Heartland, and in smaller market cities across the country.

His corporate experience includes building and leading the executive recruiting function for the corporate headquarters of Edward Jones, one of the largest wealth management firms in the country.  In this role he worked with the firm’s management committee on hiring strategy and succession planning, led and executed executive searches across the entire platform, and represented Edward Jones to the executive talent marketplace. 

Prior to joining Edward Jones, Matt spent 11 years working in the Global Capital Markets as a retained executive recruiter specializing in Investment Banking, Research, Sales and Trading and Institutional Asset Management.

Mr. Huffman holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration from Maryville University of St. Louis, MO and is licensed as a Registered General Securities Representative, Series 7.

leonard mcLaughlin

Leonard McLaughlin, a Partner at SLATE, is a renowned expert in diversity recruiting within consumer and commercial financial services, industrial manufacturing, and healthcare. Since joining SLATE in 2023, Leonard has been instrumental in spearheading our mission to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion. With an outstanding track record of accomplishments, he has held influential positions as Chief Diversity Officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Gallagher, and Mr. Cooper Group.

Throughout his career, Leonard has led strategic initiatives to attract, retain, and advance diverse talent while fostering an inclusive workplace. Notably, he has pioneered groundbreaking diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives at multiple organizations.

As President of Aon Cornerstone Solutions, Leonard revolutionized the professional services landscape by establishing an exclusive network of exceptional minority and women-owned businesses for clients. Under his leadership, this initiative grew from a start-up to a full-fledged division, forging strong partnerships with minority businesses and bolstering diversity recruitment efforts.

Leonard’s extensive knowledge and remarkable achievements in diversity recruitment have established him as a recognized authority in the field. By leveraging his expertise, SLATE continues to excel in connecting clients with the highest caliber of diverse talent in the financial services industry. Leonard’s unwavering passion for driving diversity, equity, and inclusion, coupled with his unwavering commitment to delivering exceptional results, solidifies him as a leader in diversity recruitment.

Jonathan Allard
Senior Associate

Jonathan Allard, a Senior Associate at SLATE, has been an instrumental financial services and manufacturing specialist since joining the firm in January 2020. His expertise lies in successfully leading search engagements across various sectors, including banking, wealth management, private equity, asset management, insurance, annuity platforms, and family offices. Currently, he oversees all aspects of search execution, from relationship building to candidate placement.

Prior to SLATE, Jonathan spent six years as a private wealth advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors and Edward Jones. His career was defined by leveraging nationwide banking and advisory relationships, specializing in a range of functions. This included crafting tailored portfolios for individuals and small businesses, as well as addressing Private Banking needs for major insurance companies and Wealth Management firms.

Mr. Allard holds Bachelor of Science Degrees in both Accounting and Finance from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL.