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Raymond James board gets more diverse with new member

Margie Manning

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Raymond James headquarters

An executive vice president at MetLife Inc. has joined the board of directors of Raymond James Financial Inc.

Marlene Debel, who is EVP and chief risk officer at MetLife (NYSE: MET), becomes the 13th member of the board and the fourth woman on the board.

Marlene Debel

Debel is 53 years old, which also makes her the youngest director on Raymond James’ board.

Raymond James (NYSE: RJF), a financial services firm and one of the largest companies headquartered in St. Petersburg, already had one of the most gender diverse boards among local firms, according to a report released in October by 2020 Women on Boards.

There’s been a growing effort at the national level to increase diversity of all types on corporate boards. Most recently, Nasdaq proposed that most companies listed on its U.S. exchange have two diverse directors, including one who self-identifies as female and one who self-identifies as either an under-represented minority or LGBTQ+.

Debel brings three decades of experience in financial, strategic and risk management to Raymond James, said Paul Reilly, chairman and CEO.

“Marlene is a proven business leader who has helped guide organizations through periods of significant growth and change,” Reilly said. “As we continue to anticipate and react to the evolving marketplace and regulatory environment, I’m confident Marlene’s unique perspective will be valuable in helping us deliver on the firm’s long-term growth strategy.”

Debel joined MetLife in 2011 and has served in various leadership capacities. She was named to her current role as chief risk officer in May 2019, when she became a member of the company’s executive group.

Before MetLife, she had leadership roles at Bank of America and Merrill Lynch.

In addition to serving on Raymond James board of directors, Debel will serve on the board’s audit and risk committee.

She has received a restricted stock award valued at $37,500 and will be get the same compensation as other board members, the company said. In fiscal year 2020, Raymond James directors received an annual cash retainer of $100,000 and restricted stock awards valued at $150,000.

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