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AIG names successor if Benmosche can't lead

By Julianne Pepitone, staff reporter

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- AIG chairman Steve Miller will take over AIG if chief executive Bob Benmosche's cancer leaves him unable to lead, the company said Wednesday.

On Monday, the company revealed Benmosche is undergoing "aggressive" treatment for his illness. The company did not specify the type of cancer.

AIG (AIG, Fortune 500) was quick to assure shareholders on Wednesday that if Benmosche becomes "unwilling or unable to continue to effectively serve," Miller would step in as interim CEO. Meanwhile, the company would look for a long-term replacement for Benmosche.

The AIG statement also said Benmosche "feels fine, continues to work a normal schedule, and the Board continues to assume that Bob will remain CEO on this timetable."

AIG, once the world's largest insurance company, was brought to the brink of failure by losses tied to insurance policies it sold on mortgage backed securities.

The company received bailout funds through the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), which Congress passed during the height of the financial crisis in October 2008. The government's loans to AIG totaled more than $180 billion at one time, and the company became one of the largest recipients of taxpayer assistance.

Benmosche, former chief executive of MetLife, was hired last year to manage the company's efforts to repay the loans. He has said he will remain CEO until AIG completes those payments, which is slated to happen in 2012. To top of page

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