UPDATE 1-BofA board adds DuPont's Holliday

Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:42pm EDT

* All board positions now filled

* Two new committees to replace asset quality committee (Adds New York dateline, details of committee changes and earlier board changes)

NEW YORK, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Bank of America Corp's (BAC.N) directors on Monday elected DuPont Co (DD.N) Chairman Charles Holliday to the board of the largest U.S. bank and resolved to cap the board's size at 15 directors, down from 18.

The board also created two new committees, the credit and enterprise risk committees, that will replace its asset quality committee from Oct. 27, according to a statement.

Chief Executive Ken Lewis and other directors at Bank of America, which bought investment bank and brokerage Merrill Lynch & Co, have been under fire for paying billions in bonuses to Merrill employees and the government asked the bank to shake up its board.

Since the bank's annual meeting in April, at which shareholders ousted Lewis as chairman of the board, long-time directors, including O. Temple Sloan and Jackie Ward, have left.

The board has added more directors with banking experience, including two former regulators: Susan Bies and Donald Powell.

All 15 positions on Bank of America's board have been filled with Holliday's appointment, the board said.

Last week, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo subpoenaed five current or former Bank of America directors to learn what they knew about Merrill Lynch & Co's problems as the companies prepared to merge. [ID:nN16137315]

Cuomo has threatened to sue Bank of America officers, perhaps including Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis, and its lawyers over a lack of disclosures about the merger, which shareholders approved last Dec. 5 and which closed on Jan. 1.

The board will be briefed on its options if Lewis is charged with civil fraud, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.

The bank's directors were not surprised by any of the allegations made by Cuomo's office and back Lewis, the Journal said, citing the person familiar with the matter. (Reporting by Ajay Kamalakaran in Bangalore and Elinor Comlay in New York; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman, Phil Berlowitz)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.