Room for Two
In the megamerger of Citicorp and Travelers Group Inc., it looks like both CFOs will have a spot under the umbrella. Current Travelers CFO Heidi Miller claimed the CFO post of the combined Citigroup. She will report to Jamie Dimon, who was named president of Citigroup and co-head of the Salomon Smith Barney unit. Citicorp’s current CFO, Victor Menezes, was appointed president of the Citibank unit and will head global corporate banking activities.
MCI Communications Corp. called on Michael J. Rowny to become acting CFO in addition to his role as EVP for ventures and alliances at the Washington, D.C.-based telecommunications company. He succeeds Douglas L. Maine, who officially accepted the CFO job at IBM Corp. After MCI completes its merger with WorldCom Inc., current WorldCom CFO Scott D. Sullivan will become CFO of the combined companies. Dorothy A. Carey traded in her job as SVP of derivative finance at Lehman Brothers Inc. to become SVP, international corporate, at the New York Stock Exchange. Carey will develop programs for foreign companies listed on the exchange, and will administer rules and policies that relate to them. Thomas J. Tranchina squeaked into the CFO job at WD-40 Co. He succeeds Peter Williams, who resigned from the San Diegobased multipurpose- lubricant company. Tranchina, most recently a management consultant to several companies, was also named treasurer.
Saks Holdings Corp. added Mark E. Hood to its summer collection. He was named CFO of the upscale New York department store after Richard Zannino resigned to become EVP and CFO of General Signal Corp., a Stamford, Conn., manufacturer. Hood was formerly SVP of finance at Saks. Zannino succeeds Terence D. Martin, who announced his retirement.
Patrick B. Purcell is retiring while he is still king of the world. He is stepping down as CFO of Viacom Inc.’s Paramount Pictures unit after 28 years. Paramount recently coproduced Titanic, the most profitable movie of all time. Mark Badagliacca, SVP of planning for the Hollywood studio, succeeds Purcell as SVP and CFO.
Nanula’s career is running parallel to that of his peer and onetime fellow CFO at Disney, Stephen Bollenbach. Like Bollenbach, Nanula made a name for himself as someone who drives shareholder value. Now, he’s leaving Disney to become CEO of the company that plucked ITT Corp. from the clutches of Hilton Hotels Corp., where Bollenbach is president and CEO.
Nanula and Sternlicht first met when they attended Harvard Business School in the 1980s, and they’ve been close friends ever since. Sternlicht even turned to Nanula for advice on Starwood’s merger with ITT. It was Nanula’s deal-making abilities, though, that sealed the selection. “Richard is very tough dealing with Wall Street and the banks,” Sternlicht says, adding that Nanula’s deal-making mastery “enhances value for shareholders.”
Disney is now faced with finding a new CFO for the third time in three years. Mark D. Rozells, former VP, corporate treasury, is not a candidate; he left with Nanula to join Starwood.
The SEC’s Top Accountant
The SEC selected Lynn E. Turner to be its next chief accountant. Turner, currently CFO of Symbios Inc., a Fort Collins, Colo., high-tech firm, says he’s the first chief accountant to come from the corporate finance ranks in more than 30 years. Turner also served at the SEC from 1989 to 1991 as a professional accounting fellow. “To be able to contribute to the accounting profession in this way is a dream come true,” says Turner. Before joining Symbios in 1996, he spent most of his career with Coopers & Lybrand LLP, most recently as national practice leader for the high-tech audit practice.
SEC chairman Arthur Levitt cited Turner’s varied experience as a key qualification. “He has sat on all four sides of the table, giving him a keen understanding of the various and sometimes competing needs and views of the participants in the financial reporting process,” Levitt said in a statement.
Turner will face some tough issues, including international accounting standards and the independence of accounting and auditing professionals (an issue that preoccupied his predecessor, Michael Sutton, who resigned in July). Turner reassures CFOs that he will protect the independence of the Financial Accounting Standards Board. “As a CFO, I’m a strong proponent of the standards-setting process being done in the private sector.”