Notebook: Richard Rieser, MB Financial, Amcore

Posted April 13, 2010 at 1:52 p.m.

By Becky Yerak
Richard Rieser is back on the scene at MB Financial Inc.

In 2006 he sold First Oak Brook Bancshares Inc., which amassed a notable fine art collection, to MB. Rieser stayed on as an MB director, vice chairman and chief marketing strategist but left in 2007. His severance pact stipulated that MB pay for his farewell bash, “with the arrangements to be made by the executive.”

Now Rieser, who owns 360,163 MB shares, has introduced a shareholder proposal asking MB to reimburse expenses in contested elections for directors.

“The board needs to do a better job,” Rieser, who’s not seeking a board
seat, told the Tribune.

Among other things, he said MB’s earnings
per share from continuing operations have fallen annually since 2005,
“long before the start of the current recession.” In 2009 MB cut its
dividend, and has heavily diluted holders of MB stock, he said.

proposal notes that rivals to MB’s director candidates currently must
pay their own costs in a contested election. Rieser proposes that where a
challenge is mounted by shareholders holding at least 250,000 MB
shares, and that rival gets support of more than a third of
shareholders, MB shall reimburse the challenger “reasonable” costs.

which has been actively acquiring failed banks in the Chicago area,
recommends that shareholders vote against the proposal. It said its
board already may reimburse “reasonable” expenses of a stockholder who
initiates a proxy contest. MB also said, among other things, it would be
unfair to shareholders to reimburse an opposition candidate who might
have been rejected.

Forward progress:  Rick Stiles, a former
Amcore Bank executive vice president who last year lost his job along
with the Rockford-based lender’s president in a cost-cutting, has landed
at Wintrust Financial Corp.’s $1 billion-asset Barrington Bank &

Stiles, who after Amcore worked as a consultant for
Horizon Advisors, is now commercial banking senior vice president at

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