A major leadership change has taken place at Live Oak Bank.
William “BJ” Losch, the company’s chief financial officer and chief banking officer, will serve as bank president, effectively immediately, according to a news release.
He replaces Huntley Garriott, who had served as the bank’s president since 2018
“Live Oak Bancshares … announced today its Board of Directors has appointed William C. (BJ) Losch, III as President of Live Oak Bank effective today. Losch will continue to serve in his role as Chief Financial Officer of Live Oak Bancshares,” a news release sent Friday afternoon stated.
The release did not mention a reason for Garriott’s departure.
During Garriott’s five years as president, Live Oak expanded its lending reach, adding new industries and loan products to its portfolio. It also increased its deposits and offered new business savings and – most recently – checking accounts.
The bank’s steady growth required substantial investment. In September 2022, the bank committed
to adding 204 jobs over the subsequent five years and investing $25 million in campus expansions as a requirement for receiving more than $2 million in three investment grants from the state of North Carolina, New Hanover County and the city of Wilmington.
At present, Live Oak employs almost 1,000 people.
During the pandemic, Live Oak distinguished itself by the number of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans it helped affected small businesses obtain, working with non-customers as well as customers.
The bank consistently ranks as the country’s No. 1 SBA 7(a) lender by volume, while also making USDA and conventional commercial loans.
Before taking the Live Oak Bank helm, Garriott (left
) was a partner in Goldman Sachs’ Investment Banking Division. He also served as a co-head of the Banks and Specialty Finance team within the Financial Institutions Group. He was named a Goldman Sachs managing director in 2007 and a partner in 2014.
“The Board and I are beyond excited to see BJ take on this role and lead Live Oak into the future,” Live Oak Chairman and CEO James S. (Chip) Mahan III said in the release. “He has been instrumental in making numerous positive changes to how we operate the business and manage our financial performance, while embracing our strong commitment to employees and customers. Huntley Garriott, who has been serving as President since 2018, worked tirelessly through many challenges to place Live Oak on incredible footing, and we are very grateful for his contributions to our company. We wish him well in his next endeavor.”
Losch, who has been with Live Oak since September 2021, has many years of experience in banking.
Prior to joining Live Oak, he spent 12 years at First Horizon Corp. as senior executive vice president and chief financial officer, according to his online profile.
Before that, he held senior positions with First Union Bank and Wachovia Bank. At Wachovia specifically, Losch served as senior vice president and chief financial officer for its general bank, the largest of the corporation’s four major business lines.
Reporter Emma Dill contributed to this article.