August 29, 2005 08:00 ET

Deanna Oppenheimer Appointed to Leading Role at Global Bank

SAN FRANCISCO, CA and NEW YORK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 29, 2005 -- Barclays, the UK headquartered financial services group and one of the top ten banks in the world, is pleased to announce the appointment of Deanna Oppenheimer as its UK Banking Chief Operating Officer, reporting to Roger Davis, Chief Executive of UK Banking.

Ms Oppenheimer takes up her role with Barclays having spent 20 years at Washington Mutual in the US, most recently as President of its Retail Banking and Financial Services group. Washington Mutual is the sixth largest US banking institution and is known for its innovative approach to customer service. It operates more than 2,400 retail banking, mortgage lending, commercial banking, and financial services offices across the US and has over 50,000 employees.

As Barclays UK Banking Chief Operating Officer, Ms Oppenheimer will support Roger Davis in the development of strategy for the UK Bank. She will concentrate specifically on developments targeted to improve customer service and on the streamlining of front and back office processes.

Roger Davis, Chief Executive, Barclays UK Banking said: "We are delighted that such a universally respected banker as Deanna has agreed to join the team as we continue to drive forward our agenda for UK Banking. Our strategy is to reshape our cost base whilst transforming the Barclays experience for all our customers. Deanna has a proven record of achievement built up over many years in the banking industry and is well placed to make a crucial contribution to helping us achieve our goals."

Commenting on her appointment, Ms Oppenheimer said: "I am very excited about joining one of the world's leading banks giving me the opportunity to contribute on a global stage. I believe my experience of reinventing customer service at one of the leading financial services groups in the US will help Barclays reach its full potential in this crucial part of its business."

Ms Oppenheimer and her husband John are prominent members of the Seattle community. Mr and Mrs Oppenheimer plan to maintain their local ties and John in particular will co-locate/spend half of his time in Seattle overseeing his growing corporate hospitality business, Columbia Hospitality Inc. Columbia Hospitality manages 15 premier conference centres, meeting venues, inns, and resorts in the Pacific Northwest.

Ms Oppenheimer intends to retain her position on the board of Plum Creek Timber Company, one of the largest private timberland owners in the US, and will also continue to Chair the Board of Trustees of the University of Puget Sound, a nationally ranked independent liberal arts college in Washington State. She takes up her new post with Barclays in the middle of October of this year.

During Ms Oppenheimer's tenure at Washington Mutual it grew to be the sixth largest US banking institution through an aggressive organic growth strategy supplemented by a series of acquisitions. Ms Oppenheimer led a programme to open 250 new Washington Mutual branches a year. She is also known for having pioneered free checking in the US and masterminded the design of a new in-branch customer service proposition which has since been patented. Ms Oppenheimer also led the bank's award-winning, highly successful marketing and advertising programme.

Under Ms Oppenheimer's guidance Washington Mutual was named as Best Retail Bank - Americas in the 2003 Lafferty Awards and in the same year Ms Oppenheimer herself was selected as one of the "Top Five" most influential women in banking by US Banker magazine. Ms Oppenheimer stepped down from Washington Mutual in March 2005.

Notes to Editors:

Barclays PLC is one of the world's largest global financial services providers primarily offering banking, investment banking and investment management services. Present in over 60 countries, Barclays is a leading provider of global services to over 20 million customers and employs more than 78,800 people worldwide.

With over 300 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays Plc has six major divisions: UK Banking, Barclaycard, Barclays Capital, Barclays Global Investors, Barclays Wealth Management and International Retail and Commercial Banking.

Barclays Bank PLC. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

Registered in England. Registered No: 1026167. Registered Office: 1 Churchill Place, London E14 5HP.

Contact Information

  • For further information contact:
    Tom Taggart
    Direct: 415-597-2736
    Email: Email Contact


    Peter Truell
    Direct: 212-412-7576
    Email: Email Contact