MEMPHIS, Tenn., May 14, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- FTN Financial Capital Markets, a division of First Tennessee Bank N.A., announces new hires as part of strategic growth in its Public Finance Department. NORTHEAST REGION: Cheryl Ishmael, in New York,brings 30 years of experience spanning both the private and public sectors to FTN Financial. In the public sector, she served as a public finance debt issuer for 13 years, including the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) and in the private sector with M.R. Beal & Company. Alex Greenwald also joins FTN Financial's New York office with 12 years of experience in the public finance markets. Prior to joining FTN Financial, Alex was a vice president with Janney Montgomery Scott, and also served as the Manager of Public Finance for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA). Greg Fertel has over three years of experience in public finance, providing services to a diverse collection of issuers. Prior to joining the FTN Financial team in New York, Greg was an analyst in the public finance group at KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc. WESTERN REGION: Lester Graves Lennon is based in Los Angeles and comes to FTN Financial with more than 30 years of experience, including participation in the issuance of more than $200 billion of municipal debt primarily in the Western region. Prior to joining FTN Financial, Lester was a partner and served as Managing Director at Stone &Youngberg. Lester will head the West Coast public finance efforts. Chris St. James is based in Sacramento and has joined the West Coast team with over 20 years of municipal investment banking, financial advisory, and account relationship management experience. Most recently, Chris was Senior Vice President with Blaylock Beal Van, LLC. TEXAS REGION: Robert Collins joins the Texas team and is based in Houston. Robert's extensive experience includes creative bond structuring, credit analysis, and overall customer support and servicing. He was previously with Siebert, Brandford, Shank & Co. "The vast acceptance and encouragement by both issuers and investors has validated our strategic plan to allocate even more resources to our long-standing commitment to the municipal market. Our ability to attract seasoned professionals is a testament to our powerful distribution capabilities, our approach to servicing accounts, and the added value we bring to the table," said Mike Allen, Executive Vice President and Municipal Products Manager at FTN Financial. "We believe these factors, coupled with our strong capital base, will contribute to our success as we continue to selectively expand the team throughout the country."