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Chemical Financial Corporation & Chemical Bank Announce Director Appointments

Company Release - 1/31/2006 10:50 AM ET

MIDLAND, Mich., Jan. 31 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Chemical Financial Corporation (Nasdaq: CHFC) today announced the appointment of Michael T. Laethem, Geoffery E. Merszei, Calvin D. Prins, Larry D. Stauffer and Franklin C. Wheatlake to the Boards of Directors of Chemical Financial Corporation and Chemical Bank. These appointments were ratified at the December 12, 2005 Board of Directors meeting, and became effective on January 1, 2006.

On January 1, 2006, Chemical Financial Corporation's (CFC) three state- chartered banking institutions, Chemical Bank and Trust Company, Chemical Bank West and Chemical Bank Shoreline, were integrated into a single state chartered institution now known as Chemical Bank. All existing members of CFC's board have also been named directors of Chemical Bank. "The addition of these five individuals to both boards serves a dual purpose. First, these appointments enhance board representation by diversifying the business expertise of our directors while increasing leadership from throughout our operating markets. Secondly, in preparation for the pending retirements of Frank P. Popoff, Chairman of the Board and Dan L. Smith on April 17, 2006 (in accordance with our Directors Retirement Policy), these gentlemen will provide additional strength and direction to the Company's governance oversight," said David B. Ramaker, President & Chief Executive Officer.

"We are extremely pleased to further augment our board membership with individuals with such diverse business expertise. I believe that these gentlemen will provide us with the additional guidance and insight necessary to further position the company for growth and prosperity," said Frank Popoff, Chairman of the Board.

Mr. Laethem is co-owner of Farm Depot, LLC, located in Caro, Michigan. A farm machinery dealer since 1980, Mr. Laethem holds a Master's degree in Finance from Saginaw Valley State University and is a Certified Public Accountant. His association with Chemical Financial Corporation (CFC) began in 1993 when we was elected to the Board of Directors of the former State Savings Bank of Caro, which was acquired by CFC in 1996.

Mr. Merszei is Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of The Dow Chemical Company. He joined Dow Chemical in 1977 as a credit manager and progressed through various roles in the Finance organization, becoming Vice President and Treasurer in 1996. He left the company in 2001 to become Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Alcan Inc , returning to Dow in July last year. He took over as CFO in October that year and was elected to the Board of Directors of The Dow Chemical Company in December. Mr. Merszei holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics from Albion College, Michigan.

Mr. Prins is Owner of Prins Construction and Development, LLC, located in Holland, Michigan. A second generation builder, he is currently involved in all aspects of land development and construction, including land acquisition, zoning, financing and construction. His affiliation with CFC began in 2002 when he was appointed to the Board of Directors of Chemical Bank Shoreline, a former banking subsidiary of the company.

Mr. Stauffer is President of Auto Paint, Inc. and Auto Wares Tool Co., located in Flint, Michigan. Mr. Stauffer holds a Bachelor of Science degree, graduating Magna Cum Laude, from Western Michigan University. His affiliation with CFC began in 2003 with the acquisition of the former State Bank of Caledonia.

Mr. Wheatlake is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Reed City Powerline Supply Company, and its wholly owned subsidiaries The Hydaker- Wheatlake Company, Hydrolake Leasing & Service Company. He is also owner of Reed City GMC Truck, Inc. Mr. Wheatlake holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Michigan Technological University. He has served the company's subsidiaries since 1984 when he was elected to the Big Rapids Community Bank Board of Directors.

Chemical Financial Corporation is the fourth largest bank holding company headquartered in Michigan. As of December 31, 2005, the Company had total assets of $3.75 billion. Effective December 31, 2005, the Company's banking operations began operating as a single subsidiary bank, Chemical Bank, with 132 banking offices spread over 32 counties in the lower peninsula of Michigan. Chemical Financial Corporation common stock trades on The Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol CHFC and is one of the issues comprising the Nasdaq Financial 100 index.

SOURCE  Chemical Financial Corporation
    -0-                             01/31/2006
    /CONTACT:  David B. Ramaker, +1-989-839-5269, or Lori A. Gwizdala,
+1-989-839-5358, both of Chemical Financial Corporation/
    /Company News On-Call:  http://www.prnewswire.com/comp/157448.html/
    /Web site:  http://chemicalbankmi.com /
    (CHFC)

CO:  Chemical Financial Corporation
ST:  Michigan
IN:  FIN
SU:  PER

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