Welch to join UniBank as Chief Executive Officer


Former St. John’s Headmaster brings strong ties to community to position

Christopher D. Foley (l) and Michael W. Welch

Region – UniBank, a community bank based in Whitinsville, has announced that Michael W. Welch has been named chief executive officer. Christopher D. Foley, currently the interim president, has been appointed president on a permanent basis.

Welch’s appointment is effective Monday, July 15. Foley becomes president immediately.

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Welch has strong ties to the community. A Worcester native, he graduated from St. John’s High School in Shrewsbury and later returned to serve 15 years as the school’s headmaster. In that role he oversaw a successful capital campaign, boosted financial aid and scholarships and dramatically upgraded facilities.

He is a graduate of Marquette University and holds two graduate degrees from Boston College.

After leaving St. John’s, Welch worked as a teacher and fundraiser for the Red Cloud Indian School in Pine Ridge, S.D., one of America’s poorest communities. Most recently he served as special assistant to the school’s president.

“I am excited to come home to the community where I grew up,” said Welch. “This is a unique opportunity for me to work with some of the most experienced and dedicated banking professionals in the region. I plan to help strengthen the connections with our customers and build new relationships as we continue to grow.”

Foley, who has 33 years of banking experience and has been at UniBank since 2000, will continue to run the day-to-day business of the bank.

“This bank is small enough to have personal connections with our customers and big enough to give them all the modern banking tools they need,” said Foley. “I look forward to working with Michael to build on what we have already created.”

Foley has been a resident of the Blackstone Valley for 20 years. He is active in the community and serves on a number of non-profit boards, including Milford Hospital Healthcare Foundation and the Blackstone Valley Educational Foundation. He has a bachelor’s degree from Bentley University and an MBA from Suffolk University.

Members of UniBank’s Board of Directors praised the selection of Welch as CEO and Foley as president.

“We are incredibly excited that our new executive team brings together two talented people whose outstanding skills complement one another so well,” said Timothy P. Wickstrom, the board’s chair.  “With Michael Welch’s track record of leadership and deep roots in the community, and Christopher Foley’s broad experience in banking, we have a combination that will preserve our values, continue our mission and take us to a new level of growth.”

“This is a brilliant decision, to combine the talents of two of the area’s most respected individuals to lead a well-regarded financial institution,” said Denise H. Brookhouse, the CFO of Koopman Lumber.  “It’s an incredibly powerful leadership team, with local roots, financial services expertise and sterling reputations in the community.”

UniBank, which will celebrate its 150th anniversary next year, serves Central Massachusetts, Metro West, the Blackstone Valley and beyond. The bank provides a range of services to businesses and consumers. The bank provides a range of services to businesses and consumers. For more information visit www.unibank.com.