HF Financial Corp. (Nasdaq: HFFC) today announced that the Board of Directors has named Michael M. Vekich as Chairman of the Board and Stephen M. Bianchi as interim President and Chief Executive Officer. The company also announced the nominations of current directors Christine E. Hamilton and Thomas L. Van Wyhe for reelection at the company’s annual meeting of stockholders, which will be held on December 13, 2011. Stockholders of record as of October 17, 2011 will be entitled to vote at the meeting.
Vekich, who joined the company’s board in October 2010 and has served as Vice-Chair since November 2010, has over 30 years of senior executive and board experience at a variety of companies in banking and other industries. He is CEO of Vekich Associates Chartered, a Minneapolis-based management advisory firm which specializes in strategic planning, turnarounds, mergers and acquisitions, and board governance. Bianchi, who joined HF Financial in April 2010, has over 26 years of commercial and retail banking experience, including 20 years in the Twin Cities and broader Midwest markets.
“The HF Financial Board is committed to positive change in the operational leadership and execution at the company as we focus on delivering value for all our shareholders,” said Vekich. “I am pleased to have been elected Chairman by the Board, and we all believe Steve is the right person to lead HF Financial as we continue our permanent CEO search and execute our strategic plan. We are committed to maintaining our strong capital levels and asset quality and delivering the outstanding customer service that is the hallmark of our franchise. Whether through acquisition or organic growth, we believe expanding into the fragmented and underserved Twin Cities marketplace is a significant opportunity. HF Financial has a solid foundation and a bright future serving the banking needs of the communities of South Dakota and the Twin Cities.”