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Sustaining Highlight
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Sustaining Member Highlight
member success stories | member news

Each month, we'll introduce you to one of our newest sustaining members and find out what they find most valuable about a NAGGL membership.

As one of America’s leading small business lenders, CreditBench, powered by First Home Bank is proud to be a sustaining member of NAGGL. The CreditBench team is dedicated to delivering proven strength in the market. Backed by the ongoing support of First Home Bank, Credit Bench’s deep bench strength, streamlined process and advanced technology make it America’s top-performing SBA lending team.

“As an attendee of the NAGGL Conferences for over 20 years, I can’t express enough, the value of thought leadership, the exchange of ideas, and the credibility that comes along with being a member of NAGGL.” Tom Zernick, President of CreditBench.

The CreditBench team is excited to continue on the exciting trajectory they’re on with the knowledge, training, and expertise gained from our NAGGL membership in order to continue supporting small businesses in their journey towards the next step.

YELLOWSTONE BANK is proud to be a sustaining member of NAGGL. As a family-owned community bank since 1907, our focus is supporting the communities where we live and do business. Because NAGGL is also dedicated to supporting local businesses, partnering together was a natural choice for us in order to be more successful in that pursuit.  

Yellowstone Bank has been an SBA lender for over 40 years and we understand the necessity of providing excellent training to our lending team as they in turn provide a more seamless experience for our customers. The guidance and support provided by NAGGL when processing SBA loans is a great resource. 

Citizens Bank N.A. has been an SBA lender for 35 years. We have reinvigorated our commitment to the program in the past year with the creation of a dedicated team that focuses solely on SBA lending throughout our footprint in the New England, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest regions.  As part of that renewed commitment, we want to strengthen our connection to NAGGL and its outstanding training programs as well as broaden our participation in regional and national events.  The sustaining membership is an ideal way to make sure that our entire team remains current on the changing regulatory environment. 

While we have learned and relearned the SBA’s policy over the years, Citizens Bank feels that it is imperative to develop a new generation of SBA lenders both through first hand experience and the training that only the highly skilled team at NAGGL can provide.  We look forward to our continued relationship in 2020!

The Local Initiatives Support Corporation, known as LISC, is one of the largest organizations supporting projects to revitalize communities and bring greater economic opportunity to residents. These include more affordable housing, better schools, safer streets, growing businesses and programs that improve the financial outlook of people. We provide the capital, strategy and know-how to local partners to get this done. Our work impacts 7 million low-income Americans in both rural areas and urban centers across the country. Listen in as Steve Hall and Maurice Jones discuss initiatives to help small businesses in cities across the nation by bridging the gap between lenders, local institutions and residents in an effort to grow communities through economic investment.

“No Assets, No Income but we do serve as Liabilities”, jokes Doug Wolford, Manager of Washington Trust Bank’s SBA Department, when speaking about his high-performing team within the $5.6 billion privately-held commercial bank. Although the bank has been involved in SBA since 1973, Wolford established the department in 2012 as a specialized one dedicated to SBA. The dynamic team of five lenders, serving Boise, Seattle and Portland districts, has built its production to $30 million annually, helping businesses realize goals with new construction, expansion, startups, refinancing, business acquisition projects and more, all while servicing a portfolio over $100 million. The team of ‘expert consultants’ serve retail, commercial and special assets business partners, while maintaining high portfolio performance quality—performance above their SBA defined peer group in metrics such as weighted-average SBPS, delinquency rate, stress loan rate and past due rates. 

Washington Trust Bank believes that the services offered by NAGGL (training, policy interpretation guidance, and especially advocacy with the agency and on Capitol Hill) have directly contributed to the ongoing success of their SBA department and therefore increased their commitment to the association by becoming a Sustaining Member!

Membership with NAGGL provides our organization and staff with valuable opportunities to network with and learn from other leaders in small business lending. We are pleased to become a Sustaining Member and join a group of motivated lenders leveraging government-guaranteed loans to help small businesses succeed.

New York Business Development Corporation (NYBDC) and affiliates The 504 Company and Excelsior Growth Fund are mission-driven alternative lenders that provide creative financing solutions to help small businesses thrive. Throughout our 61-year history, we have provided thousands of small businesses—including start-ups, mature businesses, and minority- and women-owned businesses—with access to loans when they do not meet the requirements for traditional financing. We offer access to a suite of financing options that includes SBA 504, 7(a) and Community Advantage loans, as well as online alternative loans. Loan amounts range from $10,000 to $5.5 million and are available to small businesses across New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.

As a member of the NAGGL, Florida Capital Bank has realized significant benefits that support its business development efforts and operations. From attending the association’s conferences and reviewing e-publications for updates, to participating in training programs for the bank’s lenders, the NAGGL member experience is intertwined throughout the bank’s lending operations. 

Florida Capital Bank’s leaders cite NAGGL membership as the platform through which the bank exercises a larger voice in conversations about lending that impact the entire country, both at the national and community level. Additionally, it creates a connection between the loan officers that work in the field every day and the leaders who influence change at the national level. 

The education and insight on industry changes are valuable assets that make Florida Capital Bank a strong partner to the SBA. Florida Capital Bank is a proud supporter of NAGGL’s programs for today and tomorrow.

Lerch Early attorneys help SBA lenders close loans on terms that leave both banks and borrowers happy with their transactions. We have assisted banks and credit unions across the country in closing thousands of SBA loans, including SBA 7(a), SBA Express, CAPLine, international trade, and 504 loans.  We help our clients navigate issues including compliance with the SOP, issues with the guaranty purchase center, Office of Inspector General Investigations, and preparing for and responding to SBA audit requests and enforcement actions. Throughout the process, we make our banks look good to their borrowers and the SBA.

Alison Rind, chair of Lerch Early’s commercial lending practice, says “We’ve participated in and sponsored NAGGL events for years, and decided to become a sustaining member because this is where you go to get what you need to know about government guaranteed 7(a) lending. NAGGL’s continued mission to keep the 7(a) program alive and thriving ultimately benefits the lenders and its small business borrowers.”

ReadyCap Lending (RCL) provides secured financing, ranging from $250,000 to $5 million, to small business owners nationwide. As an
approved non-bank SBA Preferred Lender, RCL’s knowledgeable experts deliver customized 7(a) loans to promote business and community growth.

Based in Union County, New Jersey, RCL is a member of NAGGL, and a proud supporter of the SBA's Operation Boots to Business program, which provides access to start-up capital for military veteran entrepreneurs.

“We became a sustaining member of NAGGL because of the support and guidance the association provides us in all aspects of the SBA lending industry,” said John Moshier, president of ReadyCap.

ReadyCap Lending is supported by Waterfall Asset Management, LLC, an investment manager based in New York City that originates, manages, services and finances primarily commercial loans, with approximately $3 billion in assets under management.

Crestmark Bank is proud to support NAGGL and their continuous endeavors to enhance the government guaranteed loan programs that benefit small businesses across the United States. NAGGL’s unwavering support of and education for SBA lenders are just a small sampling of the many invaluable benefits NAGGL provides. Their tireless efforts have helped pave the way for steady growth within many government guaranteed loan programs.

As a national lender, we have provided SBA 7(a) loans to small businesses in 28 of the 50 states, from Seattle to Miami, and everywhere in between. Crestmark Bank’s graduation to a Sustaining Membership highlights both our support for and gratitude to NAGGL. 

Crestmark Bank feels strongly that we are in alignment with the vision of NAGGL, to carry the torch of enhancing the American dream of the entrepreneur. Crestmark Bank was founded as an entrepreneurial venture in 1996, and has continued to grow, offering an ever expanding array of loan products and options to help other entrepreneurs fuel their dreams.

NAGGL has proven time and again to be a valuable resource in SBA lending. Their training courses and programs help provide a deeper understanding of complex SBA lending issues and provide a real foundation for success.

With assets of $1.2 billion, Alpine Bank is a locally owned financial institution serving Winnebago, Boone, and DeKalb counties with a total of 16 locations in Rockford, Belvidere, Cherry Valley, Kirkland, Loves Park, Machesney Park, and Roscoe, Illinois. Founded in 1908, Alpine Bank offers a variety of financial products and services for consumers, small businesses, agricultural businesses and commercial companies and provides investment and financial services through Alpine Trust & Investment Group.

For over 20 years, the principals of our company have been providing financing solutions to hundreds of businesses in a variety of industries. 44 Business Capital, a direct small business lending division of Berkshire Bank, originates SBA loans to businesses nationwide. Our SBA loan program is specifically designed for businesses with financing needs up to $5 million. Our commitment is to make the financing process as simple and expedient as possible. We value our ability to work as a team and to give our clients the best possible service they deserve.  

As NAGGL’s first ever “Champion of Veterans Small Business Lending Award”, the team at 44 believes that assimilating the nation’s Veterans back into the fabric of our society is not only economically vital, but more importantly, a moral obligation. 44 values the work that NAGGL does in supporting SBA lenders across the country in addition to the assistance it provides for US Vets.

Radius Bank is a forward-thinking bank offering the product depth of a national brand, the online and mobile capabilities of a virtual bank and the personalized attention that only a community bank can provide. As a nationwide preferred Small Business Administration lender, Radius Bank is able to provide creative financial solutions to meet your borrowing needs. Radius Bank is a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and is an Equal Housing/Equal Opportunity Lender.

Umpqua Bank is the West Coast’s largest independent community bank, and is headquartered in Roseburg, Oregon. The bank has more than 350 locations, spanning from Seattle to San Diego and from the Oregon Coast to Idaho and into Northern Nevada.

Banking locations are called stores, and are designed as inviting spaces for customers and noncustomers alike to come in and read the paper, surf the Internet, enjoy a cup of coffee, or hold an event of their own.

Stephanie Bitters, SVP & SBA General Manager, states “Umpqua Bank is deeply committed to investing in the health of the communities we serve, both financially through active lending to businesses and consumers, and with the company’s time and resources.  Being a NAGGL sustaining member augments, supports and enhancements our opportunities to serve the needs of our small business customers.”

The firm of Schenck, Price, Smith & King is proud to be a member of NAGGL as it is a collegial organization that is dedicated to excellence in the SBA 7(a) lending industry. We at Schenck, Price, Smith & King greatly appreciate the efforts of NAGGL and wish to extend a greater commitment to the organization to assist it in achieving its goals and have a greater involvement in that effort and therefore have elected to increase our membership to the Sustaining Member level. 

Schenck, Price, Smith & King is a full-service law firm with offices in New Jersey and New York. For the past one hundred years, Schenck, Price, Smith & King has represented commercial business interests, individuals, public institutions, and charitable organizations with excellence and integrity. We are proud that many of our former partners have become judges, elected officials, trustees of universities, and have served in positions of leadership in numerous public and private institutions and charitable foundations. Some of our attorneys have also served as chief counsel for a number of major corporations and banks throughout the New York metropolitan areas.

Founded in 1912 in Morristown, New Jersey, Schenck, Price, Smith & King enters its second century of service as a firm of over 85 attorneys. Our Firm’s long history of legal excellence in the areas of banking, trust and estate planning, corporate law, real estate, healthcare, insurance defense and commercial litigation has expanded as the Firm has grown. Our areas of practice also include telecommunications, technology, construction law, environmental law, education, corporate governance, healthcare and labor and employment law. Government guaranteed lending in connection with the SBA lending programs, have become a particular focus of our banking group led by our partner Tom Hofstetter. Many of our current attorneys have been recognized as leaders in their respective practice areas. 

Anastasi Jellum, P.A. is a Minnesota based law firm that represents lenders, financial institutions and lender service providers nationally in all aspects of commercial lending transactions. We specifically focus on, and have extensive experience in, all SBA loan programs, providing support with loan eligibility issues, documentation and closing, loan administration, liquidation and guaranty purchase requests. As Your SBA Legal Department®, we make our clients’ needs our top priority, approaching every matter with urgency and an eye for detail. It is our belief that this dedication is what has resulted in our firm’s greatest reward: the continued trust and reliance of our clients. We feel that the SBA loan programs provide valuable loan options to small business across the country, and those borrowers can be best served by knowledgeable and well-trained lenders. NAGGL provides crucial training, education and advocacy for lenders offering these vital loan products, and we are proud to provide our continued support of NAGGL as a Sustaining Member.

First Choice Bank is a nine year old Bank headquartered in Cerritos, California with four branches. It has diversified itself with a C&I division, a Construction Lending Department as well as well Real estate and general commercial lending. The Bank started its SBA Department in 2013 with three people and has since grown it to 11 and focuses on the lending needs of the markets it serves in the State of California. The Bank recently listed as one of the 2014 Top 100 best performing community banks with $500 million to $5 Billion in assets. The Banks Motto is First in Speed/Service /Solutions and we work hard for our customers to make their banking experience the best it can be. First Choice Bank is a new sustaining member of NAGGL, when asked why they became sustaining members Gary Youmans wrote, “I have been involved in NAGGL since its inception and its importance to the industry is without question. Becoming a Sustaining member allows First Choice Bank to get more involved to help us to help our industry.” 

Mountain West Bank is a community bank headquartered in Coeur d’ Alene Idaho with additional SBA offices in Boise, Idaho and Spokane, Washington.  Founded in 1993, the bank has dedicated itself to becoming one of the largest community bank SBA lenders in the Pacific Northwest. MWB consistently ranks in the top 2 of all community banks for both dollars and number of loans within our SBA district and, as part of the Glacier Bancsystem we were nationally ranked at #78 in loan dollars and #38 in loan numbers in FYE 2013/2014. We believe in providing access to all small businesses in our markets and have become experts at delivering. We are Sustaining Members of NAGGL because their SBA training is second to none and they are the leading advocate with SBA on important issues for banks and borrowers alike. They also provide an insight into how SBA lending can be done properly and prosperously. NAGGL enhances SBA lending for all lenders, big and small, and we wouldn’t be successful without them!

Thomas USAF Group LLC is a leading buyer of USDA B&I loans and select SBA loans and is the fifth USAF Fund purchasing loans in the secondary market. Started in 1986, the USAF Funds do not trade loans at a profit (as direct investors do). We stay involved with the loan for its life, making servicing actions easy for banks --“one call does it all”. Our interests are aligned with that of the lender and the SBA and USDA. We offer turnkey support in terms of settlement paperwork. We have both the lending and buying experience that can help banks structure deals to navigate the maze, take advantage of the yield curve, maximize profitability and win deals from competition. “Thomas USAF has been a strong supporter of small businesses for 30 years – since NAGGL’s inception in 1984. As a sustaining member of the association, we serve banks that serve rural and small businesses by providing the liquidity and profitability that drives small business lending.”

Updated July 2, 2020

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2020 Virtual Annual Conference

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