Jane Fraser appointed first female CEO of a major US bank

Jane Fraser Citi

Citi has become the first major bank on Wall Street in the US to appoint a female CEO. Jane Fraser will succeed Mike Corbat at Citi, whose US$2.2 trillion balance sheet makes it one of the world’s major lenders.

Goldman Sachs boss David Solomon congratulated Fraser on being a “pioneer” on his LinkedIn page, and Deutsche Bank’s US boss Christiana Riley said on her LinkedIn page that Fraser’s appointment was “a watershed moment for meritocracy and equality that all women on Wall Street celebrate”.

Fraser was a partner at management consultancy business McKinsey & Company for 10 years before joining Citigroup, as it was called, in 2004. Fraser was appointed Citi President and CEO of Global Consumer Banking last year.

“Jane will become our first female CEO, a point of pride for all of us and groundbreaking for our industry,” Corbat, 60, said on his LinkedIn page.

Corbat, who will step down from the board in February next year, has been at Citi for 37 years, with the last eight years as CEO.

“I have worked with Jane for many years and am proud to have her succeed me. With her leadership, experience and values, I know she will make an outstanding CEO,” Corbat said in a Citi statement announcing his departure.

Jane Fraser, born in St Andrews, Scotland, UK, was “Number 1 Woman to Watch” in 2014 and 2015 by American Banker.

“I am honored by the Board’s decision and grateful to Mike for his leadership and support. The way our team has come together during this pandemic shows what Citi is made of. Our balance sheet is strong and our commitment to serving our clients and communities is even stronger. I will do everything I can to make all of our stakeholders proud of our firm as we continue to build a better bank and improve our returns. We will invest in our infrastructure, risk management and controls to ensure that we operate in a safe and sound manner and serve our clients and customers with excellence. Citi is an incredible institution with a proud history and a bright future. I am excited to join with my colleagues in writing the next chapter,” said Fraser in the Citi statement.

John C Dugan, Chair of Citi’s Board of Directors, said: “We believe Jane is the right person to build on Mike’s record and take Citi to the next level. She has deep experience across our lines of business and regions and we are highly confident in her. Jane’s ability to think strategically and also operate a business are a unique combination that will serve our company well.”

Jane Fraser is a member of the Board of Dean’s Advisors at Harvard Business School, serves on Stanford University’s Global Advisory Council and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She has an MBA from Harvard Business School and an MA in economics from Cambridge University. She is married with two children.

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