Nationwide Financial Services Inc. says Richard Karas will be retiring Dec. 31.[@@]

Karas, 62, is Nationwide Financial’s senior vice president for non-affiliated sales. He started working at Nationwide, Columbus, Ohio, in 1964 as a group insurance underwriter. He became senior vice president for Nationwide Financial Services sales in 1996, and he became president of NFS Distributors Inc., the company’s wholesale sales and distribution arm, in 1998.

Nationwide will be conducting an internal and external search to evaluate possible successors, the company says.