Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) has announced that vice chairman J. Michael Evans will retire at the end of the year. He spent more than two decades at the firm and was once considered to be a frontrunner to become the firm’s next CEO.

Goldman Sachs evans

Evans to become a senior director

After his retirement, Evans will serve as a senior director for Goldman Sachs. He the firm’s Investment Banking Division in London in 1993 and then was named a partner a year after. He served as global head of Equity Capital Markets and handled a number of privatizations in the Asia Pacific and European regions during the 1990s. According to a statement released by Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS), he also played a key role in the firm’s initial public offering in 1999.

In 2001 he co-headed Goldman’s Equities Division, working in London and New York. Then two years after that, he became the Securities’ Division’s co-head. In 2004 he moved to Hong Kong and became chairman of the firm’s Asia Pacific operations, and he remained there for seven years. Over the last three years, Evans worked as Goldman’s Business Standards Committee’s co-chair, overseeing what Goldman first to as “the most extensive review of the firm’s business standards and practices in its 144 year history.” In 2008 Evans became one of the firm’s vice chairmen, and then in 2011, he became global head of the Growth Markets division.

“Michael’s deep commitment to the firm, his unrelenting focus on our clients and his broad global market knowledge have left an extraordinary mark at Goldman Sachs,” said Goldman Chairman and CEO Lloyd C. Blankfein in a statement.  “We particularly appreciate the role he played developing our client franchise across Asia, and his work co-chairing the Business Standards Committee, which was an unparalleled effort to review our business standards and practices.  We are pleased that we will continue to benefit from his advice and counsel as a senior director.”