Newsmaker: Michael E. Bleier
Noteworthy: Bleier received the American Bar Association's Frank Simpson III Award, which recognizes outstanding service to its Banking Law Committee. He is the 17th recipient of the award, which was first presented in 1994 but is not made annually.
Residence: Mt. Lebanon
Family: Wife, Carol, three children and eight grandchildren.
Occupation: Bleier is a partner in the financial industry group at law firm Reed Smith, which has more than 1,800 lawyers in 25 offices in Pittsburgh and locations worldwide. Bleier joined Reed Smith in 2007, after serving as Mellon Financial Corp.'s general counsel. Before Mellon, he worked at the Federal Reserve in Washington for 11 years.
Education: Bachelor's degree, University of Tulsa, 1962, economics and history; law degree, Georgetown University Law Center, 1965.
Background: The Banking Law Committee said Simpson established a collegial atmosphere that made it possible for members to speak freely at meetings about complex banking law, without fear of criticism. Simpson knew much about banking law but welcomed comments without becoming judgmental.
Quote: “To be recognized with the Frank Simpson Award by one's peers and betters is truly humbling and meaningful. ... Those standards are quite high, but I intend to continue to act in a manner that affirms the committee's decision.”