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January 01 2009

Operation HOPE Appoints Union Bank’s Pierre Habis to its National Board

Longtime banking executive plans focused attention to community empowerment initiatives 

(LOS ANGELES) –August 15, 2009—Financial literacy nonprofit, Operation HOPE, Inc. (HOPE) Founder, Chairman and CEO John Hope Bryant announced today, that Executive Vice President Pierre P. Habis, Union Bank’s Head of Branch Banking, will take a seat on the organization’s National Board to become the newest Silver Rights Ambassador in HOPE’s campaign to empower the underserved.
“I look forward to working with Operation HOPE’s board in finding new approaches to financial literacy,” said Habis. “Union Bank has been a partner of Operation HOPE since its founding days and we join them in this new mission of helping small business owners and entrepreneurs become better educated in managing their finances and growing their businesses. We also salute and endorse HOPE’s ongoing efforts in assisting individuals and families.”
“I am pleased to have Pierre Habis join Operation HOPE’s National Board, with more than 20 years of consumer and small business banking experience, his expertise will make him a vital member to HOPE’s National Board,” Bryant stated. “His insight and knowledge will be of great assistance when it comes to making the critical decisions that affect the organization’s growth and development.”
Habis has direct oversight of more than 325 Union Bank branches in California, as well as the Bank's Small Business Banking and Priority Banking® groups. In 2006, he was named managing director of retail banking and chairman of Countrywide Investment Services, Inc., and in the following year Habis assumed oversight for Countrywide's commercial banking business. There he played a prominent role in developing and growing Countrywide Bank's unique retail business model, grew the deposit base by more than $30 billion, opened 150 new retail financial centers in 30 metropolitan markets across the U.S., and built a sales and service culture that increased employee and customer satisfaction and productivity. His responsibilities also included call centers, Internet banking, marketing and advertising, and all deposit products.
Habis will join some of the nation’s most powerful executives, decision-makers, bankers and economists as a HOPE National Board member. The organization is made up of six regional boards, an international board of advisors, and is governed by one national board.