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Published: Thursday, 1/6/2005

Sanders appointed a director of Fifth Third

The superintendent of Toledo Public Schools has been elected to the board of directors of Fifth Third Bank, Northwestern Ohio.

Eugene Sanders, superintendent of the 34,000-student school district since 2000, was elected to the bank's board last month. It was announced Tuesday.

Larry Sykes, president of the Toledo Board of Education, is vice president/community affairs for Fifth Third.

The district invests money with Fifth Third and other financial institutions. At the end of December, TPS had just over $5 million in a Fifth Third savings account.

Mr. Sykes said the district's attorney confirmed there was no conflict of interest with Mr. Sanders' election to the bank's board of directors.

Jennifer Hardin, chief advisory attorney for the Ohio Ethics Commission, said it may be a conflict under state ethics law, but she noted the situation hasn't been examined.

Members of the bank's board are compensated, but Fifth Third declined to say how much. The board is an oversight panel that makes suggestions to the bank, a Fifth Third spokesman said.

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