Lawrence K. Fish
Lawrence K. Fish is the former Chairman and CEO of Citizens Financial Group, Inc., a multi-state commercial bank holding company headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island. During his 17-year tenure, CFG grew 30-fold and became one of the 10 largest commercial bank holding companies in the United States in total assets and deposits. It operates its branch network in 13 states through its Citizens Bank and Charter One brands, and has non-branch retail and commercial offices in about 40 states.
Currently Fish is Chairman of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, the largest educational publishing company in the United States with principal offices in Orlando, Boston, Austin and Chicago. The company employs several thousand people and is the largest publisher of K-12 textbooks in America as well as publishing adult fiction, non-fiction and a wide selection of children's book titles. He also is a Director of Textron Inc., a leading global multi-industry company with brands including Cessna, Beechcraft, Bell Helicopter and E-Z-Go golf carts, and Tiffany & Co., a leading American luxury brand with stores throughout the United States and worldwide.
Fish has a long record of leadership positions in business and the community. In July 2003, he was named to the MIT Corporation, which is the Board of Trustees of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and in 2005 joined the Executive Committee of the Corporation. He also is an Honorary Trustee of The Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. where he served on the board for 15 years. In 2007 he was elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.
In service to the banking industry, in January 1999 Fish joined the Federal Advisory Council, a panel of 12 bankers who serve as a key source of information for the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and the banking community. In January 2001, he was appointed Vice Chairman of the Federal Advisory Council. Fish served as Director of The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston from 2002 through 2004. He also served on the FDIC Commission on Economic Inclusion, a panel that provides the FDIC with advice and recommendations on expanding access to banking services among under-served populations.
Fish currently also serves on the Board of Advisors of Rosie’s Place, a sanctuary for poor and homeless women in Boston. He has previously served as an Overseer of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and on the Board of Directors of Boston's Dimock Community Foundation, Inc.
Fish has chaired numerous capital campaigns, including major initiatives to assist The Women's Lunch Place and Codman Square Health Center. He also led a key campaign for The Vietnamese Community Center, a facility for nonprofit agencies that provide economic development and social services to Boston's 20,000 Vietnamese refugee and immigrant families. He is particularly interested in the issues of immigration and urban poverty.
Throughout all of these endeavors, Fish has lived the belief that an organization's only sustainable competitive advantage is its people. This is reflected in taking time to engage personally with colleagues and customers every day, pioneering programs at CFG such as comprehensive adoption assistance and an employee emergency assistance plan, and hands-on involvement as a volunteer at inner-city organizations in Boston and Providence.
Fish began his career in 1969 with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and was assigned to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. His banking career began in 1972 at Bank of Boston, where Fish ran operations in Brazil and Japan, headed the Asia-Pacific Region, ran Trust worldwide and headed New England Banking.
A 1966 graduate of Drake, Fish earned an M.B.A. from the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration in 1968. He was the recipient of Harvard's Frank Knox Fellowship, which included graduate study at the London School of Economics and travel in India. Fish is the recipient of honorary doctorate degrees from Drake University, Providence College, Bryant College, Roger Williams University, Johnson & Wales University and the University of Massachusetts.
Fish and his wife Atsuko, who also is deeply involved in various community organizations, reside in Boston and have three children.