BRADENTON, Fla. — Memphis-based Morgan Keegan & Co. is expanding its reach in the Northeast region with the addition of two veteran public finance bankers.

The firm has hired Susan Schmelzer as a managing director in New York and Joseph DaBreo as a senior vice president in Boston.

“The in-depth knowledge and extensive experience that Susan and Joe bring to our public finance practice will add to and further enhance a veteran team we’ve built over the past few years in the Northeast,” said Rob Baird, executive managing director and president of Morgan Keegan’s investment banking division.

Schmelzer has focused a 27-year career on providing investment banking services to New York State agencies, authorities, and local governmental entities, according to a release.

Most recently she was with Jefferies & Co., formerly Depfa First Albany municipal group, where her work included serving on the senior banking teams for the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York and the New York Municipal Bond Bank Agency.

Prior to working at Jefferies, Schmelzer was with Roosevelt & Cross for 13 years.

She is a member of the New York State Government Finance Officers’ Association board of governors and co-chair of the group’s banking and investment management committee. She received a bachelor’s degree and a master of business administration in finance from St. John’s University.

DaBreo most recently was with Mesirow Financial Inc. in Boston. Prior to that, he worked at Barclays Capital and formerly Lehman Brothers where his work included managing more than $10 billion of municipal bond issuance as lead banker for state-level issuers in the firm’s East Coast regional group. They include the commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, and the Massachusetts School Building Authority.

His work also covered public and private higher educational institutions. He received a bachelor’s degree from Boston University.

In the first quarter of the year, Morgan Keegan was the 10th ranked underwriter nationally on 81 transactions with a par amount of more than $1.4 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.

In 2010, the firm was the nation’s ninth largest lead underwriter on 751 issues with a par amount of $13.4 billion.

A division of Regions Financial Corp., Morgan Keegan & Co. is a regional full-service brokerage and investment banking firm.

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