Woodbury Financial Services, a subsidiary of The Hartford Financial Services Group, has appointed Gary Bender as new vice president of acquisition and retention.

In his current role, Bender will be responsible for implementing the firm’s growth strategy and will report to Woodbury president Patrick McEvoy.

Bender will be relocated from New York City to Minneapolis.

Bender will join Woodbury from AIG’s independent broker-dealer, Royal Alliance, where he was senior vice president and director of recruiting, and is credited with expanding the firm’s recruiting efforts to include broker-dealer acquisitions and elite partner relations.

Woodbury Financial Services is an independent broker/dealer that provides retail insurance and investment products and services through about 1,800 independent financial services representatives in more than 200 offices across the US.