Raymond James & Associates has revamped the leadership and divisional organization of its Private Client Group, giving executives of Morgan Keegan and several Raymond James employees new leadership roles.

The changes, which were first announced on Monday via an internal firm memo, come one week after Raymond James closed the Morgan Keegan deal for about $1.2 billion in cash.

The new structure of the Private Client Group includes five divisions and five sets of divisional directors. Now, the firm has created regional director positions that aimed at supporting the division directors, as well as the branch managers and financial advisors.

“The intent…is to really develop a balanced integration of both the Morgan Keegan and Raymond James leadership in the Private Client Group to better position us as we integrate the two firms,” Tash Elwyn, president of Raymond James & Associates’ Private Client Group, said in an interview.

The move comes as Raymond James’s financial advisor force is expected to increase by approximately 1,000 financial advisors with the acquisition, based on the retention packages that were offered to certain Morgan Keegan financial advisors. Raymond James originally estimated in January that its financial advisor force would total more than 6,000 following the close of the deal.

The new regional director positions will help serve that expanded force, working to preserve the accessibility and responsiveness Raymond James already had in place for its financial advisors and clients, Elwyn said.

The appointments will allow Raymond James to continue to work with Morgan Keegan’s leadership, which Elwyn said he credits for the strong financial advisor allegiance to the firm both before and after its sale. The move also enabled the firm to promote several valuable Raymond James employees, he said.

The new Southern division, where Morgan Keegan had “the greatest density and success,” according to Elwyn, is comprised of all Morgan Keegan leadership. That includes co-division directors Dick Ferguson, who most recently served as president of Morgan Keegan’s Private Client Group; and Bill Geary, who previously served as the manager for Morgan Keegan’s Jackson, Miss., branch, was co-head of the Private Client Group and spent 15 years on Morgan Keegan’s Chairman’s Club.

They are joined by regional directors Jim Hamilton, a branch manager at Morgan Keegan’s Atlanta office; Van Thompson, a branch manager at Morgan Keegan’s Lexington, Ky., office, and Michael Turnbough, who is a branch manager in Morgan Keegan’s Birmingham, Ala., office.

That Southern division includes Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina and South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.

The newly named Southwestern division will also include Morgan Keegan leadership. Pat Allison of Raymond James will continue to lead that division, following his December 2005 appointment to that role. Tommy Orr, who was a co-manager of Morgan Keegan’s Houston branch, will serve as the regional director. Orr will continue to manage Morgan Keegan's Houston branch. The Southwestern division includes Arizona, California, Colorado, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas and Utah.

The Eastern division will include two internal Raymond James promotions. Ira Federer, who first joined Raymond James in June 1994, will continue to lead that division. Newly appointed regional directors for that division include Tom Walrond, who most recently served as North Atlantic complex manager at Raymond James, and Tom Galvin, who was previously a complex manager for North Florida and the coast of Georgia and South Carolina.

The Great Lakes division will continue to be led by Bill Roney, who came to Raymond James & Associates when it acquired Roney & Company in 1999. The North Central division will also continue to be led by John Kuklenski, who joined Raymond James in 2004 from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney.

Raymond James & Associates Private Client Group has also appointed Erik Fruland to assume the role of chief operating officer and senior vice president. Fruland has been with Raymond James for 20 years, and most recently served as a vice president and investment committee member in the firm’s Asset Management Services business. He replaces Scott Curtis, who became president of Raymond James Financial Services on Jan. 1.

Next for Raymond James and Morgan Keegan will be working to give their financial advisor force access to the best resources that the firms have to offer, according to Elwyn.

“The focus during the integration will be on initially providing access, both to Raymond James and Morgan Keegan [financial advisors] alike, to the combined shared resources and strengths that we have,” Elwyn said. “In the coming year, that will include integration of back office, as well as technology resources.”

Lorie Konish writes for On Wall Street.




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