Robert Wilmers, Who Grew M&T Bank Into Regional Leader, Dies

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Robert G. Wilmers, the longtime chairman and chief executive of M&T Bank Corp., has died.

The Buffalo-based company says the 83-year-old banker died suddenly and unexpectedly at his New York City home late Saturday.

In his 34-year tenure, Wilmers oversaw the growth of the bank into one of the region’s largest, with 783 branches in eight states and the District of Columbia. Through 24 acquisitions, assets increased from $2 billion in 1983 to more than $120 billion.

Wilmers was also the co-owner of New England Newspapers Inc., which in 2016 purchased The Berkshire Eagle in Massachusetts and in Vermont the Brattleboro Reformer, Bennington Banner and the weekly Manchester Journal.

Wilmers’ involvement and investment in Buffalo extended to the region’s cultural and educational institutions, including the Albright-Knox Art Gallery.