Photo Release -- First Niagara Names Industry Veteran Deb Burgess to Serve as Director of Treasury Management

Photo Release -- First Niagara Names Industry Veteran Deb Burgess to Serve as
Director of Treasury Management

BUFFALO, N.Y., May 23, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- First Niagara Financial Group,
Inc. (Nasdaq:FNFG) recently welcomed Deb Burgess as the multi-state bank's
Senior Vice President and Director of Treasury Management. Burgess will draw
upon more than 25 years of experience to further enhance and expand First
Niagara's Treasury Management offerings. In her role, Burgess will work to
build out the company's Treasury Management division's sales and product
capabilities, and enhance the group's marketing capabilities and technology
infrastructure for increased functionality for customers in the small
business, business banking, commercial banking and specialty banking sectors.

Deb Burgess
 Deb Burgess, Director of
 Treasury Management for First

A photo accompanying this release is available at

Burgess said she accepted the newly created position based, in part, on her
desire to leverage her expertise and experience in the Treasury Management
area to build on First Niagara's current capabilities by driving product
innovation and services, and overall deliver a superior experience for the
bank's commercial and business customers. She will be located in First
Niagara's Commercial Finance offices at 3 Allied Drive, Dedham MA.

"First Niagara truly encourages me to bring a fresh perspective to my role,"
Burgess said. "After building a broad and deep background in treasury
management over the course of my career, I look forward to using that
experience to implement best practices and further build on First Niagara's
Treasury Management division."

Burgess will manage a team that consists of an experienced group of product
and sales professionals. She will report directly to David Ring, First
Niagara's Managing Director of Enterprise Banking.

"As a content expert with experience in every aspect of Treasury Management,
Deb was a natural fit for this new position," Ring said. "We're pleased to
have her leading First Niagara's treasury management team."

Burgess joins First Niagara from Santander's/Sovereign Bank, in Boston,
Massachusetts, where she served as a Senior Vice President and Director of
Product Management, Payables and Receivables, Lockbox Customer Service and
Implementation. While at Sovereign Bank, Burgess increased product revenue by
double digits, redesigned the bank's entire suite of Lockbox services and
introduced new products and services to small business customers. 

Prior to that position, Burgess managed a team of 37 treasury professionals
within Wachovia Bank's Treasury Services Division in Charlotte, North
Carolina. Her team was responsible for all product, liquidity, and global
sales consulting, industry strategy, product communications, sales training
and product launch.

Burgess is a graduate of Assumption College, and has taken part in several
leadership courses at Harvard Business School. She is a member of the Treasury
Management Association of New England, Association of Financial Professionals
(AFP), and the American Diabetes Association. 

About First Niagara

First Niagara, through its wholly owned subsidiary, First Niagara Bank, N.A.,
is a multi-state community-oriented bank with nearly 430 branches,
approximately $37 billion in assets, $28 billion in deposits, and
approximately 6,000 employees providing financial services to individuals,
families and businesses across Upstate New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and
Massachusetts. For more information, visit

The photo is also available via AP PhotoExpress.

CONTACT: Media Contact:
         Karen Crane
         Communications Manager
         (203) 789- 2752
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