Terry Kassel, head of Merrill Lynch's human resources department, will be retiring at the end of this year, after 20 years with the firm and four years as head of the department.

Smith Barney has hired Stacy Brandom as chief financial officer of the Global Private Client Group. Brandom will report to Mark Joiner, CFO of Citigroup Wealth Management, and Charlie Johnston, president and CEO of Smith Barney's Global Private Client Group. Most recently, Brandom was CFO and senior vice president of JPMorgan's Corporate Sector.

Barry Sobel, Susan Thornton and Tony Pruitt, one of A.G. Edwards' top-producing teams, has left the firm to join Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown in Atlanta.

Michael Munson, a private banker at Mellon Bank with $1.25 billion in assets, has joined Thomas Weisel Partners in Boston.

Harvard University has chosen Mohamed El-Erian, 47, a managing director at Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO), to steward the school's endowment early next year. El-Erian replaces investing legend Jack Meyer, who helped quadruple the endowment from $4.7 billion in 1990 to more than $25 billion this year.