SOURCE: Center Bancorp, Inc.

December 18, 2007 12:50 ET

Center Bancorp, Inc. Announces Permanent Appointment of President and Chief Executive Officer

UNION, NJ--(Marketwire - December 18, 2007) - Center Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: CNBC), parent company to Union Center National Bank of Union, New Jersey, announced at its board meeting yesterday that the Board of Directors permanently appointed current acting President, Anthony C. Weagley as President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Weagley was also appointed to the Board of the Bank.

"After our review and search for a permanent appointment to the position, it was clear Mr. Weagley has shown himself to be an extremely capable leader and an excellent choice to lead the Bank. We feel he is the best candidate to continue moving this company forward toward its stated goals and building shareholder value," said Alexander A. Bol, Chairman of Center's Board of Directors.

Mr. Weagley commented that he looks forward to continuing to work with the Board and management team in meeting the challenges ahead.

Mr. Weagley also announced today that he is continuing to move forward with the Bank's efforts to expand the lending staff and had announced that William Boylan and Ronald M. Shapiro have both joined the company as Vice Presidents, in the Commercial Lending Division.

"The Bank continues to gain traction in growing the loan portfolio as a percentage of its earning asset mix. These steps of recruiting and retaining quality lenders and increasing commercial business development are key to our strategic plan committed to by Anthony C. Weagley, President & CEO and the Board." Mr. Weagley further noted that they would be adding two more lenders to the team moving into the first quarter of 2008.

In a separate action, the Company additionally announced that it had taken steps on its branch rationalization initiatives and would be moving forward with consolidating two of its Morristown locations. The Current Red Oak Banking Center will be closed and consolidation with the Town Hall Morristown Banking Center effective March 18, 2008.

About Center Bancorp

Center Bancorp, Inc., through its wholly owned subsidiary, Union Center National Bank, Headquartered in Union, New Jersey, currently operates 14 banking locations. Banking centers are located in Union Township (6 locations), Berkeley Heights, Boonton/Mountain Lakes, Madison, Millburn/Vauxhall, Morristown (2 locations), Springfield, and Summit, New Jersey. The Bank also operates remote ATM locations in the Union, Chatham and Madison, New Jersey Transit train stations, Union Hospital and the Boys and Girls Club of Union.

Union Center National Bank is the largest commercial bank headquartered in Union County; it was chartered in 1923 and is a full-service banking company.

For further information regarding Center Bancorp, Inc., call 1-(800)-862-3683. For information regarding Union Center National Bank, visit our web site at http://www.centerbancorp.com

Contact Information

  • Investor Inquiries:
    Anthony C. Weagley
    President
    Center Bancorp, Inc
    (908) 206-2886