BOSTON, May 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- LPL Financial LLC, the nation's largest independent broker-dealer* and a wholly owned subsidiary of LPL Investment Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: LPLA), announced today that Robert Comfort has joined the Company as Executive Vice President of Business Consulting for its Institution Services division. In this role, Mr. Comfort will lead the Business Consulting team, responsible for serving the approximately 680 banks and credit unions to which LPL Financial provides brokerage, trust and wealth management services. Mr. Comfort and his team will focus on helping the Company's bank and credit union clients build, grow and maintain highly successful brokerage, trust and wealth management programs. LPL Financial Institution Services is a preeminent player in its space today, with leading market share across the third-party brokerage services industry for banks and credit unions. Mr. Comfort, 50, joins LPL Financial from Huntington Bank, where for years he led Huntington's retail brokerage program and most recently was responsible for leading all of Huntington's wealth management businesses, including personal trust, private banking, broker dealer and RIA. While at Huntington, which he joined in 1995, Mr. Comfort was instrumental in building Huntington Investment Company into an industry leading bank broker-dealer noted for its dynamic culture, top-ten-percent industry performance and exceptional compliance and regulatory record. Winner of numerous industry awards, Mr. Comfort was named "Executive of the Year" by the Bank Insurance & Securities Association (BISA) in 2009 and just recently was named to the Emeritus Board of the organization. He also served a two-year term as President of the BISA from 2006 – 2007. Andy Kalbaugh, Managing Director and Head of Institution Services for LPL Financial, said, "We are very pleased that Rob has joined our organization. He brings an outstanding record of leading a large financial services organization and its range of brokerage, trust and wealth management capabilities. As LPL Financial expands our institutional services from primarily brokerage to more comprehensive trust and wealth management, we believe Rob has tremendous value to offer our bank and credit union customers across the country." Mr. Comfort said, "I am excited about joining LPL Financial, which has earned a preeminent position in our industry. I look forward to working with my new colleagues to help our bank and credit union customers maximize their potential in their comprehensive wealth management businesses. It is a real honor to join such a fine organization."