General Counsel Mayopoulos is Fannie CEO candidate-WSJ

Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:26pm EST

Feb 16 (Reuters) - Fannie Mae's general counsel Timothy Mayopoulos has emerged as the leading internal contender to become chief executive at the government-controlled mortgage firm, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources.

In January, the company had said current CEO Michael Williams will depart after a successor is appointed to lead the country's largest provider of U.S. residential mortgage funding.

Mayopoulos was general counsel at Bank of America in 2008 but was pushed aside to make room for Brian Moynihan, who became the bank's CEO a year later.

The business daily said officials are canvassing a wide range of external candidates including Shekar Narasimhan, who runs a housing-finance advisory firm, and David Stevens, CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association, for the job.

Fannie has chosen recruiters Heidrick & Struggles International Inc to handle its CEO search, the Journal said, quoting people familiar with the situation.

Fannie Mae wasn't immediately available for comment outside regular business hours.

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