Jamie Kase will join ING Investment Management early next month as executive vice president and head of distribution, confirmed Tracey Gordon, ING spokeswoman. The position is new. He will be responsible for managing distribution for all of the firm's institutional and managed account businesses, and will be responsible for ING's consultant relations and client services business. Mr. Kase will report to Robert Crispin, chairman and CEO of ING. Mr. Kase was COO of Merrill Lynch Investment Managers Institutional in the Americas; he resigned Friday, according to an internal memo distributed to MLIM employees. Frank Porcelli, managing director and MLIM's COO for the Americas, issued a memo that said he will assume Mr. Kase's responsibilities until a replacement is hired. MLIM "will be moving aggressively to fill this critical position," according to the memo. Megan Frank, spokeswoman, declined to comment on whether MLIM is using an executive search firm.