JPMorgan Risk Committee Cut in Half as Futter, Cote Leave

JPMorgan Chase & Co., the largest U.S. bank, said Ellen V. Futter and David M. Cote, two of the firm’s four risk-committee members, left the board.

Futter, president of the American Museum of Natural History, is leaving after 16 years with the bank, while Honeywell International Inc. Chief Executive Officer Cote, 62, is retiring after more than five, the New York-based firm said yesterday in a statement.

Cote and Futter were among three risk committee members who narrowly won re-election to the board in May, overcoming opposition from some shareholders after a London unit’s loss of more than $6 billion exposed risk-management failures. None of the three had worked at a bank or as financial risk managers, Bloomberg News reported in May 2012. A fourth was added to the committee after the loss.

“I am proud to have served as a member of JPMorgan Chase’s board during such a historic time,” Futter, 63, said in the statement. She was the only director who didn’t attend the annual shareholder meeting in May. She was re-elected with 53 percent of the vote, the smallest margin.

“I think she just got tired of the criticism,” John H. Biggs, who served as a JPMorgan director with Futter until 2007, said in an interview. “She was long on judgment but short on technical knowledge, and that’s OK by me.”

Cote received 59 percent support, while James S. Crown, the president of Henry Crown & Co., got 57 percent. Lead director Lee R. Raymond said at the time that investors should “stay tuned” for changes.

JPMorgan intends to name new directors later this year, according to the statement. The retirements leave the board with nine members, including Chairman Jamie Dimon.

“It was totally unfair criticism,” Biggs, 77, said. “You look at the people who were raising the criticism: None of them had ever been on an audit committee. None of them had ever been on a risk-management committee.”

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