Craig Young

Merrill Lynch Wealth Management has appointed Craig Young as its head of National Business Development. 

Young — who now reports to the Merrill Wealth President Andy Sieg — and will lead the design and execution of new business development ideas, best practices and efforts between local Merrill leadership and advisors and those of the national firm. 

“Craig is an outstanding leader who has demonstrated commitment and passion to develop and translate strategy into initiatives that drive growth,” said Andy Sieg, president of Merrill’s wealth unit, in a statement. 

In his new role, Young will work with market leaders and advisors on adding clients, delivering strong client experiences and “creating greater consistency in how we integrate and deliver growth across the country,” Sieg added. 

Young and his team’s focus will be on the firm’s growth strategy, which includes its Advisor Growth Network, Market Executive Strategy Council and FA Advisory Council to Management. 

The former wealth market executive for the market of Westchester-Greenwich, Connecticut, joined Merrill Lynch in 2015 as the associate market executive for what is now Merrill Private Wealth Management in Los Angeles. He served as the market executive for the Pasadena, California, market from 2016 to 2018.

Young is a member of the Bank of America Black Executive Leadership Council and chairman of the Merrill Lynch African American Leadership Council.

The number of Merrill financial advisors stands at about 17,500, with the average level of 12-month fees and commissions at $1.1 million for 2019. Veteran FAs brought on an average of 5.5 new households last year, with an average household size of $1.3 million.

Its current class of advisor trainees “is 30% female and more than a third ethnically diverse,” Sieg explained last month on a call with the media. The firm also is making more diversity-focused hiring across the firm and “at all levels,” he added, “to reflect the increasing diversity of the client population, … and we are very proud of that progress.”

— Check out Banks, Financial Services Must Do Better on Diversity: House Report on ThinkAdvisor.