Alter appointed to BOT after case with FDIC

Dennis Alter, the namesake of Alter Hall in the Fox School of Business, was reappointed in March after settling with the FDIC in 2015.

On March 15, Dennis Alter was unanimously reappointed to the Board of Trustees to a new four-year term, which ends on Oct. 1, 2019.

The decision comes about nine months after court records showed Alter settled a case with the FDIC last June for $23.5 million, after the agency had sued him for more than $219 million, according to a complaint filed in June 2013.

On the Board of Trustees’ site, Alter is listed as a tourist, with no place of business.

He told The Temple News last week he was happy about being re-elected to the board, and declined to comment on his settlement with the FDIC.

“As they say in the legal field, it’s old and cold,” Alter said of his decision not to comment.

The Temple News previously reported that Alter was initially appointed to the board in 2012 by the state. Last month, he was reappointed by Mike Turzai, speaker of the state’s House of Representatives.

Turzai, who has been speaker since January of last year, could not be reached for comment.

According to the case settlement, Advanta Bank Corporation—a depository institution that operated in Utah—was closed by the Utah Department of Financial Institutions in March 2010 and the FDIC seized all the corporation’s assets.

In June 2013, Alter and William A. Rosoff—former President and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors at Advanta—filed a countersuit against the FDIC, claiming the agency had “covered up its wrongdoing” that had led to the closure of Advanta.

The complaint states that Advanta had tried to keep business afloat during the Great Recession, but the FDIC had interfered with its ability to recover from huge financial losses.

“As the FDIC well understood, the breach of its promise and change of position condemned the Bank to failure,” the complaint reads. “And, in fact, shortly after and because of the FDIC breach, Advanta’s parent was forced to declare bankruptcy, and Advanta was forced into receivership.”

Representatives from the FDIC then filed a motion to dismiss Alter and Rosoff’s suit Sept. 20, 2013.

Chairman of the Board Patrick O’Connor told The Temple News in 2013 that Alter was in “no danger of losing” his trusteeship.

Currently, Alter serves on the board’s athletics, budget and finance, compliance and executive committees. University bylaws state that as a member of the budget and finance committee, Alter has “oversight over matters and policies pertaining to finance, business, operating and capital budgets, insurance, employee relations, contracts and grants, tuition and fees, and the long-range financial planning and development of the University.”

Alter and his wife, Gisela, donated more than $15 million for the construction of Alter Hall in the Fox School of Business, an $80 million project which opened in 2009.

According to court records, Alter’s case with the FDIC formally closed July 7 of last year.

Steve Bohnel can be reached at or on Twitter @Steve_Bohnel.

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