Jeffrey R. Schmid
President & CEO
Jeff Schmid joins the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking (SWGSB) Foundation, headquartered at SMU’s Cox School of Business, as
president and CEO effective September 1, 2021. With nearly 40 years of banking and regulatory experience, Mr. Schmid began his
career at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in 1981, and remained until 1989. He was graduated from the SWGSB summer
residence program at SMU Cox in 1990. After completing the SWGSB program, Mr. Schmid became president and CEO of two closely held
banks in the Midwest. In 2007, he led the establishment of Mutual of Omaha Bank, a wholly owned investment of Mutual of Omaha,
where he served as chairman and chief executive officer. He built the organization into a national franchise with assets of nearly
$10 billion. Mr. Schmid is a longtime member of the Cox School of Business Executive Board. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the
University of Nebraska. His involvement with the SWGSB Foundation is long established, including service as past chairman of the
SWGSB Foundation Board of Trustees. He received the SWGSB Alumni Association’s Distinguished Service Award in 2006. Only seven
other graduates in the SWGSB’s 64-year-old history have received this prestigious honor. He has also been a SWGSB faculty member
and was Dean for Bankers at SWGSB. He presently sits on the boards of Operation HOPE in Atlanta, Georgia, and Avenue Scholars in
Omaha, Nebraska. Mr. Schmid and his wife Amy Cox Schmid, avid Huskers fans, have two adult children, Abbie, married to Alex Cuenca,
and Bobby, both residing in Kansas City, Missouri. Go Big Red!
Chief Operating Officer, Managing Director
David is Associate Director of the SW Graduate School of Banking and the SW Graduate School of Banking Foundation. Among his responsibilities at SWGSB and the Foundation are accounting, cash management, development, advertising, marketing, and public relations. He is relentless in his efforts to help build SWGSB/SMU into a powerhouse of professional programs—both academically and financially. David was graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from Arizona State University, first in his class at the now W. P. Carey School of Business. Throughout his public relations career, he has worked with a galaxy of luminaries, including Julie Andrews, Kevin Spacey, Suze Orman, Michael Jordan, Julia Child, Debbie Reynolds, Jerry Seinfeld, Estée Lauder, Oscar de la Renta, Bill Blass, Liza Minnelli, Maya Angelou, Stephen King, Anthony Hopkins, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, and former presidents Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. An avid reader, he enjoys a wide variety of books, blogs and online newspapers and magazines. He keeps his carbon footprint in check by riding his bike daily through Highland Park.
Seth N. Bennett
IT Manager, Associate Director
Seth is an Information Systems Specialist for the SW Graduate School of Banking. He graduated from
the University of Texas at Dallas with a degree in Computer Science. He developed a great knowledge of
multiple programming languages and skills during his time at the University which have proved
invaluable. He is responsible for the maintenance and development of the SWGSB websites and
databases. He is committed to making the website easy for the SWGSB clients to use while providing all
the information anyone will need. Seth is an avid fan of basketball, hockey, football, and baseball, and he
supports all the local teams.
William T. Chittenden, Ph.D.
Chief Academic Officer
Dr. William T. Chittenden serves as the chief academic officer of the SW Graduate School of Banking at Cox SMU School of Business at Southern Methodist University.
He is also an Associate Professor of Finance in the McCoy College of Business Administration at Texas State University. At Texas State, he previously served as
Presidential Fellow, Associate Dean for Graduate Programs and Department Chair. Dr. Chittenden earned a B.B.A. in finance and an M.S. in economics from the
University of Texas at El Paso, and a Ph.D. in finance from Texas Tech University. He has been quoted in USA Today, the Austin American-Statesman and has been
interviewed for radio in the U.S. and Canada. His articles for TheConversataion.com have been viewed more than 100,000 times. He has served as a consultant to
the Bank of Montreal/Harris, ABN/AMRO, Household International, TAP Pharmaceuticals, Ozona Bank, and other regional, national, and international firms.
He speaks regularly to professional organizations across the United States, Canada and offshore on a variety of financial and economic topics.
Merrill J. Reynolds, Jr.
Managing Director, Certified Community Bank Director's Program (CCBD)
Merrill J. Reynolds, Jr., serves as managing director of the Certified Community Bank Director's Program (CCBD), SWGSB Foundation, at the SMU Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University.
A graduate of Southern Methodist University and the SW Graduate School of Banking, Mr. Reynolds began his career as a bank examiner with the Federal
Reserve Bank of Dallas. A 40+ year banking veteran, he has worked for both community and multi-bank holding companies in various lending and managerial
capacities. Before beginning his consulting career, Mr. Reynolds served as senior vice president and business banking manager for Wells Fargo, N.A., in
New Braunfels, Texas. Mr. Reynolds founded Reynolds Williams Group in 1999, as a consulting firm designed to provide services to financial institutions,
credit unions and Farm Credit Banks nationwide.
Mr. Reynolds serves as an instructor for multiple state and national banking organizations and was instrumental in the design of the only accredited certification
course for loan review professionals. Mr. Reynolds has been a lead instructor for Bank Administration Institute, has served as a faculty member of the SW
Graduate School of Banking for 22 years and is a regular speaker for the Assembly for Bank Directors, state banking associations and numerous national conferences
and seminars, both domestic and internationally. He received the SWGSB distinguished faculty award in 2019. Mr. Reynolds is currently participating on a national
task force on bank director mitigation of personal liability and reputational risk. Mr. Reynolds also serves on the Alumni Advisory Board for the Cox School of Business
and serves as faculty and curriculum liaison for the American Bankers Association Commercial Lending Schools.
Edmond J. Seifried, Ph.D.
Edmond J. Seifried, Ph.D., is chief economist of the SW Graduate School of Banking Foundation at SMU Cox School of Business. Dr. Seifried is Professor Emeritus of
Economics and Business at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania. He also serves as Executive Consultant and Chief Economist for the Sheshunoff CEO Affiliation Programs.
For nearly fifteen years, Dr. Seifried - "Dr. Ed," as his students call him - has distinguished himself as a highly ranked member of the SWGSB Foundation, for both the Graduate
School of Banking at SMU Cox and the Assemblies for Bank Directors programs. His insights, both as an educator and private investor, have added tremendous credibility to the Foundation's leadership development curricula and value proposition.
He frequently appears as a guest speaker at regional and national conferences and has delivered more than 2,500 economic presentations to various groups both in the United
States and abroad. Dr. Seifried is the author of the book “The Art of Strategic Planning for Community Banks.” In addition to his academic and consulting experience,
Dr. Seifried serves as a director of a community bank.
RETURN TO TOP