Should Brian Moynihan hold both the CEO and chairman posts at Bank of America? When asked about this in 2009 (and every year after that), shareholders said no. And if you ran into Moynihan on a Tuesday night at Safeway, where he was picking up something for dinner, and corned him in the frozen food section, up against the glass door behind which 4 different kinds of bagel bites had moments earlier rendered him paralyzed and unable to make a decision, and point blank asked him, "Brian, do you actually want to do both these jobs? Or even one of them?", pinning him between the freezer door and his cart and not letting him out until he answered, well, he'd probably say no, too. But the board has given him both anyway. Knowing the decision was controversial, it made sure to come up with a list of reasons that demonstrate B-Mo is qualified:
Bank of America Corp. defended its decision last fall to give the chairman title to CEO Brian Moynihan, saying it made the move after careful consideration and he is well suited for the job. In a regulatory filing Thursday, the bank said its board’s corporate governance committee “deliberates on and discusses the appropriate leadership structure for the board based on the needs of our company” at least every year. Mr. Moynihan deserved the chairman job, the bank said, because of “leadership qualities, management capability, knowledge of the business and industry, and a long-term, strategic perspective” that he has laid out during five years as CEO, the bank said...The board said it went through “months of thorough deliberation” before wiping out the shareholder amendment and said the 2009 vote was made during a different era, in the depths of the financial crisis.
Oh, and just in case anyone is really panicked, BofA has installed a guy to act as the adult supervision:
The bank noted it had appointed another board member, Jack Bovender, as lead independent director when it made Mr. Moynihan the chairman. The bank said Mr. Bovender, who held the roles of chairman and CEO at hospital chain HCA Inc., had experience running a highly regulated company and showed “a readiness to challenge management.”