Local SunTrust chief out amid shuffle

Gail Letts

Gail Letts

The local head of one of Richmond’s major employers is leaving her post.

Gail Letts, president and chief executive of SunTrust Bank’s Central Virginia operations, is “leaving us to pursue other opportunities,” company spokesperson Mike McCoy said, as part of the Atlanta-based bank’s plan to restructure its management ranks.

The changes went into effect Jan. 1. Letts will officially depart at the end of the month, McCoy said.

BizSense was unable to reach Letts by press time.

SunTrust, McCoy said, is moving from away from a structure in which it had regional heads in markets such as Richmond, Roanoke and Hampton Roads. The bank instead will have three statewide heads that will oversee each of its three main lines of business: retail banking, commercial banking and wealth management.

“It is a move to more closely align our business strategy and delivering for our clients,” McCoy said. “The organizational changes are going to be largely transparent to our clients.”

The changes do not affect SunTrust’s mortgage operations, which have a major presence in Richmond. The company, including its mortgage operations, has about 4,500 employees in Richmond.

The company has a large office downtown on Ninth and East Main streets and across the river in Manchester.

As a result of the changes, SunTrust’s three new Virginia heads are John Stallings, who will oversee commercial and business banking statewide, Leroy Abrahams, who will lead the company’s retail banking operations in Virginia, and Michael Lomax, who will oversee wealth management operations in the state.

Stallings and Lomax will continue to work out of Richmond. Abrahams works out of Norfolk.

The pending departure of Letts’s counterpart in Roanoke, Barry Henderson, was made public last month in a report by the Roanoke Times.

SunTrust is considered a regional bank with operations in 11 states and Washington, D.C., spread throughout the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic. It had total assets of $173.2 billion at the end of the third quarter.

Letts, a well-known and active figure in the local business scene, became president and chief executive of SunTrust Central Virginia in January 2007.

She began her career in banking with the former Loyola Federal, which was eventually bought out by SunTrust. She’s been with SunTrust since the early 1980s.

Letts has volunteered with and served in various capacities for organizations including the Greater Richmond Partnership, the United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg, Virginia Bankers Association, Richmond Symphony, UNOS and CenterStage Foundation. She also was named to Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones’ Washington Redskins steering committee that helped find a site for the team’s summer training camp facility set to open in the city next year.

She received her bachelor’s degree in English from Wilkes University.

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Calvin Stanley
Calvin Stanley
8 years ago

A very professional lady who served both the community and SunTrust well.