Ex-CEO of Bankoh considered for Citigroup board


POSTED: Saturday, March 14, 2009

Former Bank of Hawaii Chief Executive Michael O'Neill reportedly is one of the candidates being considered for a position on the board of directors at financially troubled Citigroup Inc.

O'Neill, who turned around Bankoh's lagging fortunes in less than four years before retiring at age 57 in August 2004, was mentioned along with former U.S. Bancorp CEO Jerry Grundhofer and William S. Thompson, former co-chief of bond investment manager Pimco, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The newspaper said Citigroup is expected to announce the board changes next week when it files its proxy statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any nominees would have to be formally approved by the board and voted on by shareholders.

O'Neill took over then-called Pacific Century Financial Corp. from Larry Johnson on Nov. 3, 2000, and in less than four years transformed the bank into a more efficient operation, elevated earnings to record highs and increased shareholder value nearly fourfold.

He also became somewhat of a TV personality with the bank's “;Tell Mike”; campaign.

Richard Parsons, a one-time University of Hawaii student who took over as chairman last month, is one of the few Citigroup directors with experience in both banking and leading a large company.