Mercer’s parent MMC names new CEO

GLOBAL - Marsh & McLennan Companies, the parent of consulting firm Mercer, has named a new chief executive as it seeks to resolve its “legal and regulatory issues”.

The firm – hit by a suit from New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer – said it has accepted the resignation of chairman and chief executive Jeffrey Greenberg. Michael Cherkasky, Spitzer’s former boss, has been named president and CEO.

Cherkasky - who is a former CEO of Marsh Kroll as well as a former chief of the Investigations Division for the New York County District Attorney's Office - will remain chairman and CEO of insurance arm Marsh.

"Jeff Greenberg has served MMC with dedication as chairman and chief executive officer for the past four and a half years,” MMC said in a statement. “He has led the company through significant challenges, including the tragedy of September 11.”

It added: “Michael Cherkasky is a proven executive with an enormous breadth of experience.

“He brings a history of innovation and together with our other senior executives will restore the confidence of our clients, employees, and shareholders and reassure the regulatory authorities of our commitment to operate at the highest legal and ethical standards."

MMC has also set up a committee of outside directors to solve its legal and regulatory matters.

“MMC is a strong company with a proud 130-year history and terrific people. I want to assure our clients, colleagues, and shareholders that we will resolve our problems and move forward," Cherkasky, 54, said.

Cherkasky joined MMC when it bought risk group Kroll in July this year.

The firm, which is also facing a slew of lawsuits about alleged conflicts of interest, has also changed its rules so that the chairman need not necessarily be CEO. Previously the chairman had to be CEO.

Robert Erburu has been named as lead director in lieu of a chairman of the board.

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