TACOMA, Wash., May 23, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Columbia Banking System, Inc. (NASDAQ: COLB) ('Columbia' or the 'Company') today announced that Craig D. Eerkes, who has served on the Board of Directors of the Company and its wholly owned subsidiary Columbia Bank since September 2014, has been appointed as Chairman of the Board. During his time on the Board of Columbia, Mr. Eerkes has served on the Personnel and Compensation, Enterprise Risk Management, and Trust Committees.
Mr. Eerkes succeeds William T. Weyerhaeuser, who served as the Chairman of the Board since 2001 and Director since 1998. Mr. Weyerhaeuser will remain on the Board as a Director.
In accordance with its governance policy that requires mandatory retirement at age 75, the Company also announced that Mr. Weyerhaeuser, along with Directors John P. Folsom and David A. Dietzler, will retire from the Board of Directors at the 2019 Annual Meeting of Shareholders.
'It has been a great privilege to serve as Chairman of the Board of Columbia for the last 17 years,' said William Weyerhauser. 'During that time, I have witnessed the incredible dedication of both our Directors and leadership team. Together we have built one of the finest banking franchises in the Northwest, and I am especially proud of our strong commitment to our customers, employees and the communities we serve. While it will soon be time for me to retire, I could not be more pleased to have Craig Eerkes lead the Board and continue to build upon our success. Craig is a proven and collaborative leader with considerable expertise in both community banking and regulated industries. He has been a Columbia Board member for the past four years, and knows our company, people, culture, and vision. I am confident that Craig will be an outstanding Chairman for Columbia.'
Mr. Eerkes commented, 'I am honored to be appointed the Chairman of the Board. On behalf of the Board and leadership team, we are grateful for Bill's numerous contributions in establishing a strong foundation for Columbia. It has been a privilege to work side-by-side with Bill, who is a collaborative leader, a strategic thinker, and a great steward of capital. With Bill, John Folsom and Dave Dietzler retiring next year, our Board has been highly engaged in succession planning to ensure a seamless transition. Recently we have added new members with great credentials and fresh perspectives. I am excited to work with our dedicated and talented Board and leadership team in the continued pursuit of our long-term strategic vision.'
Mr. Eerkes has served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Sun Pacific Energy, Inc., a Tri-Cities based retail and wholesale petroleum company with locations throughout Washington since 1981. He has an extensive background with financial institutions and broad experience in highly regulated industries, including 16 years as a director of WMI Insurance Company, a health and life insurance company based in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was the chairman and a director of AmericanWest Bancorp from 2004 to 2012, as well as a director of First Hawaiian Bank from 1996 to 1999. He was founder, director and chairman of American National Bank, N.A., Kennewick, Washington, from 1981 to 1996. Mr. Eerkes is a graduate of the University of Puget Sound. He was named 'Tri-Citian of the Year' for 2014 and is actively involved in the Boy Scouts, Boys & Girls Clubs, United Way and several other community organizations.
About Columbia Bank
Headquartered in Tacoma, Washington, Columbia Banking System, Inc. (NASDAQ: COLB) is the holding company of Columbia Bank, a Washington state-chartered full-service commercial bank with locations throughout Washington, Oregon and Idaho. For the eleventh consecutive year, the bank was named in 2017 as one of Puget Sound Business Journal's 'Washington's Best Workplaces.' Columbia ranked eleventh on the 2018 Forbes list of best banks. More information about Columbia can be found on its website at www.columbiabank.com.
Note Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which can be identified by words such as 'may,' 'expected,' 'anticipate', 'continue,' or other comparable words. In addition, all statements other than statements of historical facts that address activities that Columbia expects or anticipates will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. Readers are encouraged to read the SEC reports of Columbia, particularly its form 10-K for the Fiscal Year ended December 31, 2017, for meaningful cautionary language discussing why actual results may vary materially from those anticipated by management.
Investor Relations Contact:
Financial Profiles, Inc.
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SOURCE Columbia Banking System, Inc.