A major shake-up at Lafayette-based MidSouth Bank has led to the termination of two top executives. MidSouth Bank President and CEO Troy Cloutier and his father, MidSouth Bancorp founding President and CEO Rusty Cloutier have been let go as the company moves in a new direction.

The story was confirmed to KPEL in a phone call with Rusty Cloutier. Cloutier told KPEL's Bernadette Lee, "I enjoyed very much starting this company 32 years ago. It has been an amazing and great company, but I have just turned 70 years old and I'm looking toward the future and it's still a great company."

Current Chief Financial Officer Jim McLemore has been appointed interim President and CEO of both the bank and the holding company. The company says he will retain those duties at this time.

In a formal press release, the board of directors at MidSouth Bancorp says a transition plan is already in place.

This decision by the Board of Directors is part of a transition plan already underway to improve the performance of the Company. Jim McLemore has been appointed President and CEO on an interim basis for both the holding company and bank.   Mr. McLemore has over 30 years of banking industry experience, including 8 years with MidSouth as Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.  Mr. McLemore will also retain his position as Chief Financial Officer during the interim period.  These leadership changes are effective immediately.  Jake Delhomme, Chairman of the Board of Directors of MidSouth Bancorp, Inc. stated, "The Board of Directors is fully supportive of Mr. McLemore in his immediate endeavors as President and CEO."

As part of its transition plan, MidSouth has recently hired two highly qualified executives with very deep experience from larger financial institutions.  Erin DeWitt recently joined MidSouth as Chief Risk Officer, a position she held for two years with Scottrade Financial Services.  In the preceding seven years, she worked at Capital One in various risk roles.  Kade Peterson was recently hired as Chief Information Officer, after three years as Executive Vice President – Chief Operating Officer of USAmeriBank in Tampa, FL.  Prior to that he was EVP-Operations and Technology Executive for Sterling Bank in Spokane, Washington.