Ellmore C. Patterson, 90, former chairman and chief executive of J.P. Morgan & Co. who helped mold the financial community’s response to New York City’s economic crisis of the 1970s, died Friday at his home in Locust Valley, N.Y., said his son, Michael.
Patterson led J.P. Morgan and its subsidiary, the Morgan Guaranty Trust Co., from 1971 to 1978. He made efforts through the mid-1970s to avert bankruptcy for the city, creating a business leadership coalition called the Partnership for New York City in 1979.
Born in Western Springs, Ill., in 1913, Patterson earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Chicago in 1935, joined J.P. Morgan the same year and remained with the company for the rest of his career.
In 1975, Patterson, David Rockefeller, and several other financial executives formed the Financial Community Liaison Group, which worked with state, federal and municipal officials to strengthen the city’s faltering economy.
As chairman of the group, Patterson argued that banks should not try to bail the city out with loans, but rather attract investors.