Mercantile president steps down Dunn, once thought to be future chairman, to stay at mortgage unit

'Next generation' coming

Reid is named his replacement in 'logical move for him'


September 10, 1997|By Bill Atkinson | Bill Atkinson,SUN STAFF

The man once seen as the successor to H. Furlong Baldwin as chairman and chief executive of Mercantile Bankshares Corp. resigned yesterday as president of the company and as president and chief operating officer of its flagship bank.

Edward K. Dunn, a nine-year veteran of Mercantile, was replaced by J. Marshall Reid, who was named president and chief operating officer of the $2.6 billion-asset Mercantile-Safe Deposit and Trust Co.

Baldwin was given the additional title of president of the parent company at a board of directors meeting yesterday.

Dunn was "passed over," said an analyst, who did not want to be named.

"He was a very strong individual, well respected inside the organization and outside the organization," the analyst said. "But it was: 'Let's bring the next generation in.' "

Dunn, 62, will continue as chairman of Mercantile Mortgage Corp., a unit of the company that has $34 million in assets and services about $600 million in mortgages.

Dunn's chances of succeeding Baldwin to run Maryland's largest banking company, with $6.8 billion in assets, ended when Mercantile's board of directors extended Baldwin's contract a year ago.

Baldwin, who turned 65 last January, has an employment agreement with the company until Feb. 1, 1999, which may be extended until Feb. 1, 2000.

Dunn has been president of the parent company since 1991, and president and chief operating officer of Mercantile-Safe since mid-1995. He joined the bank in 1988 after a 14-year career with Alex. Brown Inc., where he was a managing director in charge of investment banking for banks and saving and loans.

Baldwin credited Dunn with helping Mercantile grow to its present size. It is one of the nation's most heavily capitalized and profitable banks. He said he was "delighted he [Dunn] is going to stay with us in an active role and be directly involved with this bank and the community, which is one of his great strengths."

Dunn could not be reached for comment.

Reid, 51, joined Mercantile in 1993. In 1994, he was named executive vice president in charge of its banking division, which oversees operations that include lending and deposit gathering.

"The next logical move for him was to be president and chief operating officer," Baldwin said. "He has a strong background. He is one of the very bright young people of our next generation of management." In addition to Reid's promotion, Mercantile named Jack E. Steil chairman of credit policy, a newly created position at the bank. Steil is in charge of credit and loan administration.

Mercantile's directors also voted yesterday for a quarterly dividend of 20 cents a share on its common stock, payable Sept. 22.

Pub Date: 9/10/97

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