Leadership Team

Executive Committee

Our leadership team of seasoned industry professionals is supported by a highly motivated, diverse set of managers and employees committed to delivering a strong customer value proposition. Our highly experienced and talented executive management team, whose members have nearly 30 years of banking experience on average, provide strong leadership to deliver on our overall business objectives.

Profiles of Citizens’ executive management team can be viewed by clicking below

Bruce Van Saun – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

Van Saun joined CFG in October 2013 – after serving as RBS Group Finance Director and as an executive director on the RBS Board from 2009 to 2013 – and led Citizens to a successful initial public offering in September 2014. He has more than 30 years of financial services experience.

From 1997 to 2008, Van Saun held a number of senior positions with Bank of New York and later Bank of New York Mellon, including Vice Chairman and Chief Financial Officer. Earlier in his career, he held senior positions with Deutsche Bank, Wasserstein Perella Group and Kidder Peabody & Co.

Van Saun has served on a number of boards in both the U.S. and the U.K. He is currently a director of Moody’s Corporation, sits on the Federal Advisory Council, and is a member of The Clearing House Supervisory Board. He is also a board member of the National Constitution Center, the Partnership for Rhode Island and Jobs for Massachusetts.

John F. Woods – Chief Financial Officer

John F. Woods joined Citizens Financial Group, Inc. in February 2017 and assumed the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer in March 2017. As Chief Financial Officer, he has responsibility for our Financial Planning and Analysis, Controller, Investor Relations, Strategy, Treasury, Tax and Capital Management functions as well as for the business line finance groups.

Woods joined Citizens from Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. (MUFG), where he served as Chief Financial Officer of the MUFG Americas Holdings Corporation, which operates MUFG Union Bank, since 2013.  He previously served as Vice Chairman and Chief Financial Officer for the predecessor company of MUFG Union Bank since December 2009. Prior to that, Woods was Chief Financial Officer of the Home Lending business at JPMorgan Chase and at Washington Mutual, a predecessor entity. Before that, he held senior financial positions at the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), including Chief Financial Officer of the Funding & Investment Division and Corporate Controller. Woods began his career in 1986 with Arthur Andersen where he rose to partner in the financial and risk consulting group during his 16 years with the firm. 

Woods holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Commerce from the University of Virginia at Charlottesville.

Mary Ellen Baker – Head of Business Services

Mary Ellen Baker is Head of Business Services at Citizens Financial Group, Inc. She is responsible for the technology, operations, information and corporate security, property services, vendor management and change management functions. Baker oversees strategic investments in technology designed to drive value, efficiency and collaboration across the company.

Baker joined Citizens in August 2016 from PNC Financial Services, where she served as Executive Vice President of Enterprise Services, leading a wide range of efforts to improve the bank’s technology, controls and governance. In addition, she oversaw Information Security and built out PNC’s cyber security team.

Prior to PNC, she was at Bank of America and served as both Head of Enterprise Resiliency and Corporate Services and as the Head of Technology and Operations for the Consumer and Small Business Division. While at Bank of America, she led the implementation of the largest integrated platform upgrade and release the bank had ever attempted.

Baker is a graduate of Western Michigan University and is active in a number of community and professional organizations.

Brad L. Conner – Vice Chairman, Consumer Banking

Brad Conner is vice chairman of the Consumer Banking division at Citizens Financial Group, Inc. He is responsible for Retail Banking, Business Banking, Wealth Management, Home Lending, Auto Finance and Education Finance, as well as the Consumer phone bank and online channels.

Before joining Citizens in 2008, Conner was president of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s home equity and mortgage home loan direct business. He previously oversaw the combined home equity business of Chase and Bank One after the companies merged in 2004, and served as CEO of Chase’s education finance businesses. In his 12 years at Bank One/Chase, Conner played a key leadership role in the growth and evolution of the company’s mortgage and home equity businesses.

Conner serves as a director for the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council. He is treasurer of the board of trustees of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption and serves on its audit committee and its Committee for Institutional Advancement. He is also a member of the Consumer Bankers Association board of directors.

A native of St. Louis, Conner has a B.A. and MBA from the University of Arkansas.

Brendan Coughlin – President, Consumer Lending

Brendan Coughlin is president of Consumer Lending at Citizens Bank with responsibility for auto finance, home equity, student and personal unsecured lending. Citizens’ personal lending business includes an innovative national partnership with Apple that Coughlin’s team created and launched, and the telecom-industry-disruptive iPhone Upgrade Program.

Coughlin has been with Citizens for more than 10 years and has held numerous positions in Consumer Banking product management and consumer finance. He has led the student lending team since 2011 and auto finance since 2013, and was named president of Consumer Lending in June 2015. Previously, he was the head of marketing for Consumer Finance.

Prior to joining Citizens, Coughlin worked at Bank of America and FleetBoston Financial in a variety of business areas, including corporate strategy, mortgage product management and retail distribution / M&A.

Coughlin serves on the board of directors of uAspire, a national nonprofit aimed at increasing access to higher education among inner-city youth. He has served on the board of directors of Operation HOPE, a Boston financial literacy nonprofit for inner city youth. He actively represents the bank on the CBA Education Funding Committee, the nation’s most influential financial services trade organization for student lending.

Coughlin received his bachelor’s degree from Boston College in finance and marketing and an M.B.A from Babson College.

Stephen T. Gannon – General Counsel and Chief Legal Officer

Stephen T. Gannon is General Counsel and Chief Legal Officer of Citizens Financial Group. He leads the bank’s legal function and serves as the chief legal advisor for the company and its Board, where he counsels the company’s executives and provides strategic leadership on matters of legal risk.

Prior to joining CFG, Gannon served as executive vice president and deputy general counsel for Capital One Financial Corporation, leading that company’s Legal Department. In addition, he served as Capital One’s market president for Central Virginia, coordinating business development, government relations and community activities in the state capital region. Previously, Gannon served as General Counsel of the retail brokerage group of Wachovia Securities, where he was a member of the Operating Committee and managed the legal affairs for the nation’s third-largest brokerage firm. He also served as a Branch Chief in the Division of Enforcement with the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission and in private practice advising broker-dealer and financial services clients.

Gannon has held numerous positions within financial industry and legal organizations, including with the SIFMA Compliance and Legal Division and the Financial Services Roundtable. He served as President of the John Marshall Inn of Court and currently sits on the Managing Board of The Clearing House Association and the Georgetown Law Corporate Counsel Institute.

Active in the community, Gannon has served on the Boards of the Homeless Shelter of Richmond, Junior Achievement of Richmond, and Communities in Schools of Virginia, as well as being appointed by the Governor to the Board of the Virginia Community College System. He now serves as an Overseer for the Boston Symphony Orchestra and is a member of its Audit Committee.

He earned his undergraduate and J.D. degrees from Georgetown University.

Malcolm Griggs – Chief Risk Officer

Malcolm Griggs is the Chief Risk Officer of Citizens Financial Group, Inc. He joined Citizens in December 2014 as Executive Vice President and Chief Credit Officer.

Griggs serves on the Executive Committee and as CRO is responsible for defining and overseeing how we manage enterprise-wide risk at Citizens and for leading the bank’s Corporate Risk Management organization, including the development and execution of its strategy and its day-to-day operations.

Griggs has over 25 years of risk and business line experience. He joined Citizens from Citigroup where he was head of business risk and controls for the U.S. commercial and consumer banking businesses. Prior to this, he held senior risk management and business line roles at Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, Wachovia and Fifth Third Bancorp, where he served as CRO.

Griggs is active in industry organizations and is a past chairman of the board of the Risk Management Association (RMA).  He currently serves on the board of the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra and Music School. He earned both his undergraduate and J.D. degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Beth Johnson – Chief Marketing Officer and Head of Consumer Strategy

Beth Johnson is chief marketing officer and head of Consumer strategy for Citizens Financial Group. She is responsible for corporate-wide marketing activities and for advancing Consumer Banking growth and profitability by leading and aligning the businesses’ strategy, brand, customer experience and data analytics efforts. She joined Citizens in October 2013 as head of Corporate Strategy and was named to her current role in May 2015.

Prior to joining Citizens in 2013, Johnson was a senior leader at Bain and Company. She served as a partner and leader of its customer strategy and marketing practice, specializing in financial services. She regularly co-authored Bain’s annual Customer Loyalty in Banking study.

Johnson also held roles at J.P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs, where she focused on fixed income and derivatives products for commercial banking clients as well as risk management. An active member of the community, Johnson serves on Peer Health Exchange’s Boston board of overseers. She earned a bachelor's degree in economics from Northwestern University and an MBA from Stanford University.

Susan LaMonica – Chief Human Resources Officer

Susan LaMonica is the Chief Human Resources Officer for Citizens Bank and a member of the bank’s executive committee. She is responsible for developing and driving people strategies to support the Citizens business plan. She oversees a team of human resource professionals responsible for recruiting, leadership and talent development, learning, diversity, compensation and benefits, employee relations and the human resource service center and payroll. Susan is also responsible for internal communications and corporate affairs.

Prior to joining Citizens in 2011, LaMonica held senior leadership roles at JP Morgan Chase. She served as the head of Human Resources for the investment banking and markets division globally, and before that served as the head of human resources for the consumer and commercial banking division. LaMonica also served as global head of development for the bank, leading the firm’s efforts around talent, leadership, learning, diversity, culture and organizational change. During her tenure she played a key role for human resources in a number of bank mergers. Before moving into human resources, LaMonica began her career with Chase Manhattan Bank, holding a number of roles in operations, risk and retail banking.

LaMonica earned a B.S. in finance from Boston College and an MBA in finance from New York University.

Donald H. McCree – Vice Chairman and Head of Commercial Banking

Donald H. McCree is Vice Chairman and Head of Commercial Banking at Citizens Financial Group, Inc. He is responsible for all aspects of Commercial Banking, which includes Corporate Banking, Commercial Real Estate, Corporate Finance and Capital Markets, Mergers & Acquisitions, Treasury Solutions, Underwriting and Portfolio Management, and Community Development (CRA activities).

McCree also oversees Risk Management, Loan Operations and Strategy and Development within Commercial Banking, as well as the company’s network of State Presidents and Region Heads who represent Citizens Bank in multiple states that make up its footprint. McCree is a member of the CFG Executive Committee.

McCree joined Citizens in September 2015 from JPMorgan Chase, where he held a number of senior leadership roles over 31 years, including Head of Corporate Banking and CEO of Global Treasury Services. In that role, he was responsible for providing relationship banking services to commercial clients, as well as innovative Treasury and Trade Finance solutions to small businesses, multinational corporations, financial services’ firms, and government entities worldwide. Prior to that, McCree led and transformed a variety of large, complex businesses and functions in roles that included Head of Global Credit Markets, North American Co-Head of Fixed Income, and Head of Wholesale Risk Management.

Active in the community, McCree serves on several charitable boards. He is a graduate of the University of Vermont and sits on the UVM Board of Trustees and on the UVM Foundation Board of Directors. He and his wife have three grown children.

Brian O’Connell – Head of Technology Services

Brian O’Connell is Head of Technology Services for Citizens Financial Group, Inc. He is responsible for the design, development and implementation of technology across the company.

Before joining Citizens in 2012, O’Connell was an independent consultant working with companies in such industries as private equity, software and insurance. Prior to that, he was the chief information officer at The Hartford Insurance Group, where he had responsibility for all technology functions across the company. O’Connell has also held sales positions in both IT and insurance.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Boston College.