The success of any banking and financial services institution lies squarely with those who lead an organization and the employees who come to work each day.
We recognize the importance of strong management and the professionalism required to ensure that our customers become satisfied clients. As part of the fabric of the communities, our bankers can understand and handle our customers’ challenging issues.
Our management team of experienced private and commercial bankers has the vision to lead Darien Rowayton Bank and establish new directions in community banking. They provide the leadership to develop meaningful products, set standards for service and focus on building customer relationships that are the heart of our offering.
We are also proud to be supported by a group of founders and directors with strong roots in Fairfield County and the surrounding area. As established members of the community, they are committed to the bank’s vitality and success and have been instrumental in providing guidance into the bank’s formation and product offerings.
Robert K. Kettenmann
President & Chief Operating Officer
Robert K. Kettenmann is President and Chief Operating Officer of the Bank. He has extensive commercial and retail banking experience and has spent over 25 years at the Chase Manhattan Bank in a variety of executive positions, including President of Chase's banking subsidiary in Spain. Mr. Kettenmann later was employed by the Dime Savings Bank of New York where he held a series of senior management positions, including Executive Vice President and General Manager of the consumer lending division. Under Mr. Kettenmann's leadership, Dime built a national consumer lending business while introducing a number of technology solutions designed to enhance customer service. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in economics from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
Robert E. O’Brien, Jr.
Executive Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer
Robert E. O’Brien, Jr. is Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer of the Bank. He has over 30 years of banking experience in positions of increasing responsibility. Mr. O’Brien began his career at Putnam Trust Company. He ultimately rose to Senior Vice President with responsibility for private lending, the loan division and the mortgage division. Mr. O’Brien was most recently employed as Senior Vice President – Operations of Greenwich Bank & Trust Company, a de novo institution formed in 1997. He worked with the originating team to launch this new bank and was integral in implementing the loan, compliance and credit policies. He also helped develop and was responsible for the bank’s internal systems, including its IT infrastructure.
Mr. O’Brien is a member of the Harpoon Club of Greenwich, Trustee and Past Commodore of The Greenwich Boat and Yacht Club, Director and Past President of the Greenwich Kiwanis Club, and Advancement Chairman for the Greenwich Council, Boy Scouts of America. He is a resident of Old Greenwich.
Robert W. Herrmann
Executive Vice President & Chief Lending Officer
Rob Herrmann has served as the Chief Lending Officer of the Bank since November 2010. He has over 20 years of banking, credit and lending experience. Most recently, Mr. Herrmann was employed by People’s United Bank. He has also held credit related positions with Citibank, Pitney Bowes Credit Corporation and First Fidelity Bancorporation (now Wells Fargo). Mr. Herrmann holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Connecticut. He received formal credit training from First Fidelity Bancorporation.
Neil M. McDonnell
Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer
Neil M. McDonnell is Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the Bank. He has over 25 years of experience and prior to joining DRB, Mr. McDonnell served as the Chief Financial Officer of Fieldpoint Private Bank & Trust in Greenwich, Connecticut. He also held key positions at Global Wealth Management Partners and U.S. Trust Company.
Mr. McDonnell serves as the Chairman of the Finance Committee for The Workplace, Inc. in Bridgeport, CT, a not-for-profit organization created by the State Assembly to conduct comprehensive planning and coordinate regional workforce development policies and programs. He resides in New Canaan, Connecticut, with his wife and three children. Mr. McDonnell holds a B.S. in Finance from St. John’s University.
Gary Lieberman, Chairman of the Board, is the Founder and CEO of Westside Advisors, LLC, an investment management firm established in 1997. Mr. Lieberman is the Managing Member of Alcar, LLC, which owns a majority interest in the Darien Rowayton Bank. Mr. Lieberman is part owner of the Brooklyn Nets and serves on the team’s Board of Directors. Mr. Lieberman is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Riverdale Country School. Additionally, he is on the Board of Directors for the Leif Nissen Foundation and Evan’s Team Foundation, as well as the Board of Directors of Urban Dove, a non-profit organization which provides after school programs for underperforming inner-city children as well as an alternative charter school for over-aged, under-credited students. Mr. Lieberman received an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and an undergraduate degree from Emory University.
Robert Hirt, Vice Chairman, has been associated since 1991 with the RPM family of mortgage companies. Under Rob’s leadership, RPM has excelled during what has proven to be an unpredictable time in the lending industry.
RPM Mortgage is a privately owned, family run mortgage bank led by its owners, Rob and Tracey Hirt. RPM is head quartered in the San Francisco Bay Area and has over 60 branch locations and over 800 hundred employees and mortgage professionals.
Rob’s career in the mortgage industry started in 1982. His foray into the industry began as a loan agent with a small private money firm. Rob soon started his own mortgage brokerage company and has been primarily self-employed the majority of his career. Along the way, Rob held positions with Bear Stearns and Farmer Savings Bank.
An acute understanding of the mortgage finance market has led Rob to make other investments in the financial arena where he has seen dislocation in the market and an opportunity to excel. Such investments include:
• RPM Appraisal Services, Inc, a nationally registered Appraisal Management Company (AMC) that has overseen over 50,000 appraisals since its inception in 2008,
• RPM Loan Servicing, Inc, which services loans originated by RPM Mortgage. Currently, the company is servicing over $3.5 billion in Fannie eligible loans totaling over 8,000 loans.
• Mortgage Management, Inc., a closely held company that owns mortgage retail branches in Northern and Southern California via its association with RPM Mortgage.
Maureen Connor, Director, is the owner and founder of Equity Capital Real Estate, the top Mortgage Default Asset Sales firm in Northern California, and one of the top residential real estate brokerage companies in the San Francisco Bay Area. The company serves REO Managers among most of the major national banks and third party mortgage servicing companies nation-wide. Ms. Connor founded the company in 1991 and since then has sold over 5,000 REO properties in total. The company sells REO assets in Northern California as a listing agent, and performs all services related to recovery and loss mitigation. The Company’s competitive position comes from a thorough understanding of Asset Valuation and market drivers, well developed systems for screening of prospective Residential Buyers (99.5% of deals close), and a highly Customer service driven staff.
Ms. Connor is a Co-Founder, Co-Owner, and a Corporate Officer of HMI Inc, a private mortgage lender specializing in short-term Residential Bridge financing for private individuals in Northern California. Ms. Connor is also a member and frequent conference speaker and panelist for REOMAC, the nation’s Mortgage-Default/Servicing Industry trade association who’s objective is best practices to mitigate losses on defaulted mortgage loans and to market, maintain, sell and ultimately dispose of non-performing real estate assets.
Ms. Connor was recently appointed to serve on the REO Advisory Board for First American Corporation, a Santa Ana, California based diversified real estate and financial information services firm. A native of Oakland, California, Ms. Connor earned her Bachelor degree from University of California at Berkeley in 1982. In 1982, she was hired by Pacific Plaza Hotels, a Northern California based hotel developer where she served eight years and became Vice President of Marketing, Partner and member of the Executive Committee and Development Team.
Gary S. Gladstein, Director, is currently an independent investor and consultant. He was a Partner, Managing Director, and Chief Operating Officer at Soros Fund Management from 1985 until his retirement in 2000. Mr. Gladstein serves on several corporate boards, including Mueller Industries, where he is a non-executive chairman of the board, and serves as a director of various independent boards of hedge funds. Mr. Gladstein has served on other private and public company boards over his career. He is also a director of the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation and the Abraham Fund Initiatives and various other not-for-profit boards. He was also a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Connecticut. Mr. Gladstein graduated from the University of Connecticut in 1966 and earned a Masters in Business Administration from Columbia University in 1968. He received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Connecticut in 2008.
Rodgers L. Harper, Director, has over 30 years of diverse business experience in management consulting, general management and finance. He currently works with The Harper Company, a management consulting firm, specializing in strategy, organization, marketing and productivity improvement. Previously, Mr. Harper was a partner of First Manhattan Consulting Group, a financial services industry consultancy that counseled major financial institutions in the US and abroad. Previously, Mr. Harper was a consultant at Booz Allen and Hamilton, Director of Administration of the Hathaway Patch Division of Warnaco, COO of Atlantic Sails and Senior Investment Analyst at New England Life. He is a board member of the Connecticut Chapter of the American Red Cross, the China Care Foundation, and the Harvard Business School Club of Connecticut Community Partners who provide pro-bono consulting, management workshops and scholarships for leaders of not for profits in Connecticut. Mr. Harper has an undergraduate degree from John Carroll University and an MBA from Harvard. Former Darien residents, Rodgers and his wife Nancy, now live in New Canaan.
Jeffrey Laikind, Director, is retired and a former Co-Founder and Managing Director of Prudential Securities Asset Management. At Prudential Securities, Mr. Laikind created its in-house asset management division where it raised over $2 billion in assets under management, generating over $50 million in revenue for the firm. Prior to joining Prudential Securities, Mr. Laikind was Founder and Managing Director of Furman Selz Asset Management, building its division from $20 million to $200 million in assets under management. Mr. Laikind also held similar positions at Wertheim & Co., A.G. Becker & Co., David J. Greene & Co., and Marine Midland Bank. Mr. Laikind has served on the boards of Harken Energy, North American Resources, a joint venture of Richmonte N.A. and on the board of Hanover Direct, a direct mail company. Mr. Laikind currently serves on the boards of Riversource Mutual Funds, a $240 billion family of mutual funds and Hapoalim Securities where he is chairman of the Audit Committee. He is also on the Board of American Progressive Insurance Company, where he chairs both the audit and compensation committees.
Mr. Laikind has extensive community relationships that include: President of the Choate Rosemary Hall Alumni Association and Trustee of Choate Rosemary Hall; Chairman of the Board of “StreetSquash”, an urban enrichment program serving over 750 high school students in Harlem; Team Captain and General Chairman of Maccabi, USA,; and Chairman of the Executive Committee of the New York City Opera. Mr. Laikind received a B.A. from Cornell University and attended New York University’s Graduate School of Business. Mr. Laikind lives in Weston, Ct. He is a nationally ranked squash player and an avid tennis player.
Michael Madigan, Director, is Principal and Founder of Sound Financial Management, LLC, an investment management firm in Rowayton offering comprehensive financial planning and tax services. He was previously Chief Financial Officer, Executive Vice President and a member of the board of Dorr-Oliver Inc., an engineering services and equipment company with nine foreign subsidiaries. Mr. Madigan was also Principal and Founder of Restoration Properties, LLC, a real estate development company specializing in the purchase and remodeling of historic Victorian homes in Fairfield County and Washington, DC. He is a resident of Rowayton.
Stanley (Bud) Morten, Director, is a consultant to the financial services industry and a private investor. He was the Independent Consultant to Citigroup Global Markets Inc. with responsibility for its independent research under the S.E.C.’s Global Research Analyst Settlement from 2003 to 2009. Mr. Morten was previously Chief Operating Officer of Punk, Ziegel & Co., a specialty investment bank focusing on the healthcare and technology industries, and prior to that, he spent 26 years at Wertheim & Co., an investment bank that was acquired by Schroder plc in 1994, and by Citigroup in 2000. At Wertheim he was involved with investment research, corporate finance, asset management and equity services, becoming a general partner of the firm in 1983 and later a member of the Executive Committee.
Current and past affiliations include: WPP plc (www.wpp.com), a leading marketing services firm (Senior Independent Director, former Chairman of the Compensation Committee, and former member of the Audit and Nomination committees); Register.com, Inc., which sells Internet domain name registration and related online services (former Director and Chairman of the Audit Committee); The Motley Fool, Inc. (www.fool.com), a multimedia financial content company (Director, Chairman of the Audit Committee); Morten Paper and Metal, Inc. (former Director and Chairman); the CFA Institute (member); Investment Advisory Council of the State of Connecticut, which oversees all of the state’s pension funds (one of five public members); Southport Conservancy (former Director); Fairfield Republican Town Committee (Member for District 1); the Skidmore College Parents Council; the Fairfield County Hunt Club; and the Parents Fund for Choate Rosemary Hall. Mr. Morten also is an experienced coach of youth baseball, soccer and basketball.
Mr. Morten received a B.A. degree in Economics from Lake Forest College and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Mr. Morten is also a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). Mr. Morten lives in Fairfield, CT.
Brian W. Smith, Director, is the founder and Managing Director of Smith Regulatory Strategies, LLC located in Washington, DC, New York and West Palm Beach. Smith Regulatory Strategies, LLC provides management consulting and strategic advisory services to participants in the financial services industry. Mr. Smith has over 41 years of experience in the financial services industry, including roles as a senior partner in a multinational law firm, as Chief Counsel to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and, as SVP and General Counsel of MasterCard International. His experience includes roles as a legal counselor to corporate management and Boards of Directors, a business executive with planning and management responsibilities, and a government official with responsibilities for policy development. Mr. Smith received his BA and JD from St. Johns University and an MS from Columbia University Graduate School of Business.
This website and all content is the exclusive property of Darien Rowayton Bank and may not be reproduced without permission. All information contained on this website is subject to change without notice.