Longtime Lexington banking executive Harry T. Richart III announced Tuesday that he plans to retire at the end of March.
Richart rose to prominence locally with National City and then was named leader of PNC Bank's operations in Central Kentucky after PNC acquired National City in 2008.
Replacing him will be John L. Gohmann, who joined PNC in 2009 as wealth management director.
"I'm not sure I can think of a better time," Richart said Tuesday in discussing why he chose now to step down. "We are well positioned in the market, better than we ever have been."
"And I'm at the age where it's time for me," added the 62-year-old executive.
Richart's career includes 38 years in the banking industry including 28 with PNC and its predecessors.
He was named president of National City in 1997 after serving as the executive vice president of the bank's commercial lending and retail banking groups.
But Richart's acclaim locally came not just from his banking work but also from his involvement with community groups.
Among the organizations with which he has been involved are Commerce Lexington, the University of Kentucky, United Way of the Bluegrass and the Downtown Development Authority.
"Harry is one of the finest individuals God ever made," said Commerce Lexington CEO Bob Quick, who worked closely with Richart when he was chairman of the organization in 2011. "He has the right temperament, an incredible amount of experience within the banking community and the community, and his heart is and always will be Lexington and Central Kentucky.
"He does not what helps Harry but what helps the whole community and region."
Quick also noted that many don't realize what a humorous side there is to Richart, who would occasionally break up tense meetings with a "Harryism."
"He would throw out a line that would make you laugh, but also had a powerful statement to it," he said.
Richart, a Western Kentucky University grad, also gave lots of his time to the University of Kentucky's Gatton College of Business and Economics.
"Although Harry was not an alumnus, he was a very active supporter of the college and has also actively recruited many of our best and brightest students," said interim dean Merl Hackbart. "We are deeply indebted to all he has done for the Gatton College and certainly wish him well in his new adventures."
Richart's successor, Gohmann, is a 1989 graduate of Centre College and has a joint Juris Doctorate-Master of Business Administration from the University of Dayton. Prior to joining PNC, he worked for firms including JPMorgan Bank's private banking group.
He serves on the board of the Bluegrass chapter of the American Red Cross and is a member of the Lexington Rotary Club.