First Niagara Announces Liam Brickley as Chief Credit Officer

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| Source: First Niagara Financial Group, Inc.

BUFFALO, N.Y., Jan. 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- First Niagara Financial Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:FNFG) today announced Liam Brickley as the multi-state bank's Chief Credit Officer.

As Chief Credit Officer, Brickley will be responsible for all aspects of First Niagara's credit administration function and policies and will report to First Niagara Executive Vice President and Chief Risk Officer Richard Barry.

"Liam is a well-rounded banker with deep technical knowledge, enterprise-wide perspective, strong leadership skills, and a well-deserved reputation as a collaborative business partner," said Barry. "I am thrilled to have him join our organization and am confident that he will add value immediately. I would like to thank and recognize Kevin O'Bryan, who has served as our Chief Credit Officer, for his contributions and leadership, and wish him well as he pursues a well-deserved retirement."

Brickley joins First Niagara after a 20-year career at Citizens Financial Group where he most recently served as Chief Credit Officer for the wholesale bank. Prior to that, Brickley worked at Wells Fargo managing various commercial lending businesses and portfolios.

Brickley earned his bachelor's degree in business administration from Saint Joseph's University, and his Master of Business Administration from Drexel University.

About First Niagara

First Niagara, through its wholly owned subsidiary, First Niagara Bank, N.A., is a multi-state community-oriented bank with approximately 430 branches, approximately $36 billion in assets, $28 billion in deposits, and approximately 6,000 employees providing financial services to individuals, families and businesses across Upstate New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Massachusetts. For more information, visit www.firstniagara.com. For more information, visit www.firstniagara.com.

First Niagara Contacts

Investors:
Ram Shankar
Senior Vice President, Investor Relations
(716) 270-8623


News Media:
Jodi Johnston
Director, Corporate Media Relations
(716) 270-8612