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Lenwood V. Long, Sr.

President/CEO

Lenwood V. Long, Sr.

President/CEO

President of Carolina Small Business Development Fund, Lenwood V. Long, Sr. serves as the primary visionary and Chief Executive Officer. In his role, Lenwood has led the organization through a period of transformational growth. In 2009, under his leadership, the organization went through a strategic shift and rebranding, establishing its direct small business lending program. Within five years, loan volume totaled over $30 million. In 2016, the organization rebranded again as the Carolina Small Business Development Fund, ushering in a renewed phase of growth and expansion. Lenwood has more than twenty-five years of experience in community economic development, human resources and business management. He has held leadership positions in a variety of organizations, including statewide economic and community development agencies, national consulting firms, and nonprofit organizations.

In 2016, Lenwood was awarded The Order of the Long Leaf Pine. This is among the most prestigious honors, awarded to North Carolinians who have made a significant impact through their exemplary service to the state and to their communities.

Lenwood holds a Master of Urban Administration from Georgia State University and a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from St. Augustine’s College.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 226

Email: llong@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Awamary Lowe-Khan

Executive VP, Chief Financial & Operating Officer

Awamary Lowe-Khan

Executive VP, Chief Financial & Operating Officer

Awamary is the EVP, Chief Financial + Operating Officer for Carolina Small Business Development Fund, managing our social impact investment portfolio. She has over 20 years of working in the nonprofit and innovative entrepreneurial ecosystem. She also co-founded PointClick Technologies, LLC; an IT cloud hosting and dedicated managed services company. She is the influencer behind our Black Entrepreneurship Week, and the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center - a partnership with Shaw University. She was most recently awarded Leaders in Diversity by the Triangle Business Journal, and in 2015, was nominated for Woman of the Year by Spectacular Magazine. Prior, she worked for the American Red Cross, Triangle Area Chapter, as their Regional Finance Executive, and as the Chief Financial Officer for Tammy Lynn Center for Developmental Disabilities. Her experience includes preparing and overseeing operations, strategic plans, growth strategies, and financials -- such as budgeting, financial statements, reporting, audits, forecasting, and dashboards. She serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors for CASA Esperanza Montessori Charter School in Raleigh, the treasurer of the Board of Directors for Reinvestment Partners in Durham, and as an Advisory Board Member to Innovate Raleigh. She is a member of the Masters Series for Distinguished Leaders, and Leadership Raleigh. She also has a Certificate in nonprofit management from Duke University, an Executive Program Certificate from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and is a Certified Community Development Finance professional. She received her MBA from Upper Iowa University and her Bachelor of Science from Shaw University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 223

Email: akhan@carolinasmallbusiness.org

W. Donald Harrington

Vice President, Chief Credit Risk Officer

W. Donald Harrington

Vice President, Chief Credit Risk Officer

As Vice President Chief Credit Risk Officer, Donald Harrington brings over 22 years of experience in financial management, commercial lending and portfolio risk management. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Don served as senior vice president and chief credit officer at Mechanics and Farmers Bank where he developed exceptional management experience in credit analysis, loan operations, and mortgage and commercial lending. He also served as chairman of the Management Loan Committee. He received a Master of Business Administration from East Carolina University and a Bachelor of Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 231

Email: dharrington@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Amber Banks

Vice President, Business Lending

Amber Banks

Vice President, Business Lending

Amber Banks serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's Vice President, Business Lending. She manages the underwriting and loan servicing processes. She also assists with portfolio management, risk analysis, and loan servicing. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business, Amber was a senior credit analyst with Mechanics and Farmers Bank where she served as credit liaison and analyst for the bank’s syndicated loan portfolio. Amber earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration – Finance from North Carolina Central University, graduating Magna Cum Laude. She also has a certificate in community development finance.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 229

Email: abanks@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Teresita Maz

Vice President, Strategic Initiatives

Teresita Maz

Vice President, Strategic Initiatives

Teresita Maz serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's Vice President of Strategic Initiatives. In this position, she is responsible for managing strategic partnerships at the national and state level to further the mission of the organization. She will also be developing and leading implementation of strategic priorities and plans that drive operational efficiency, growth, expansion and innovation. Prior to joining Carolina Small Business, Teresita was the principal consultant at InterConnect Consulting, LLC for three years. She also spent more than 9 years at a large healthcare insurance organization where she worked in sales, marketing, and development. Teresita holds a Master of Business Administration from Florida Institute of Technology.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 240

Email: tmaz@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Sadaf Knight

Vice President, Policy and Research

Sadaf Knight

Vice President, Policy and Research

Sadaf Knight serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's Vice President, Policy and Research. She provides research and analysis on public policy issues related to community development financing and economic development. Sadaf brings extensive experience in public policy research, particularly in the areas of economic and workforce development. Prior to joining Carolina Small Business, Sadaf served as a policy analyst and community leadership fellow at MassBudget, an independent research organization focusing on state-level economic issues that impact low- and moderate-income people in Massachusetts. Sadaf has a certificate in non-profit management from Duke University and a certificate in community development finance. She received a Bachelor of Science in conservation & resource studies from the University of California, Berkeley and a Master of Urban Planning from Columbia University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 247

Email: sknight@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Joe Battle

Vice President, Business Services

Joe Battle

Vice President, Business Services

Joe Battle serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's Vice President of Business Services. In this position, he is responsible of working with potential and existing borrowers by providing business services and coaching to help them receive a loan through Carolina Small Business. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Joe served as a business counselor for the Small Business Technology Center. Joe is also the co-founder and principal of Success 360i. Joe obtained his bachelor’s degree in computer science and Master of Business Administration from Duke University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 244

Email: jbattle@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Germaine McIver-Cherry

Associate Director of Business Services

Germaine McIver-Cherry

Associate Director of Business Services

Germaine McIver-Cherry serves as the Associate Director of Business Services. She is responsible for working with potential and existing borrowers by providing "end-to-end" technical assistance and coaching to help nurture, grow and strengthen entrepreneurs and small business owners throughout the success of their business. Additionally, Germaine will be working on developing sustainable partnerships between CSBDF and HBCUs across the state of North Carolina.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 249

Email: gmcherry@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Angela Milton

Business Services Program Associate

Angela Milton

Business Services Program Associate

Angela Milton serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's business services program associate. In this position, Angela will be assisting in the implementation of our business services and programs. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Angela had multiple businesses in New Jersey, Virginia, and North Carolina. Angela brings a wealth of business ownership experience and knowledge in entrepreneurship, managing a business, accounting, and more. Angela is also a Veteran of the US Air Force serving during the Gulf War (Desert Shield and Desert Storm). She has received certificates in different entrepreneurial training classes and brings her expertise to the small business department.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 242

Email: amilton@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Roxanne Bailey-Reed

Field Operations Director

Roxanne Bailey-Reed

Field Operations Director

Roxanne Reed serves as Field Operations Director for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. Roxanne has spent the past 20 years establishing her role as a community leader among entrepreneurs through business consultation and mentor support, and is proud to have helped over 200 North Carolina Small Businesses grow and thrive. Roxanne has earned a Bachelor of Science of Psychology from Old Dominion University and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. In 2016 she earned her Project Management Professional Certification from the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 403

Email: rreed@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Janice Rojas

Marketing and Communications Director

Janice Rojas

Marketing and Communications Director

Janice Rojas serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's Marketing and Communications Director. In this position, she manages all internal and external communications and is responsible of implementing marketing strategies and promotion plans for programs and initiatives, as well as maintaining media relations. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business, Janice worked in the editorial department at Pace Communications. Janice also worked in various nonprofits and was a contributing writer for a magazine during her college career. Janice earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and mass communication with a specialization in public relations from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 232

Email: jrojas@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Anastasia Bowden

Development Associate

Anastasia Bowden

Development Associate

Anastasia Bowden serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund's development associate. She is responsible for building and maintaining relationships with donors, grant writing, event planning, and program research. Anastasia served as a communications and policy research intern for Carolina Small Business from May 2014 until May 2015. Beginning her work with non-profits during high school, Anastasia continued work within the sector during her undergraduate career by working with Timmy Global Health and the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Anastasia recently graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and mass communication with a specialization in public relations and a minor in Hispanic studies.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 245

Email: abowden@carolinasmallbusiness.org

To see a borrower achieve their dream is a joy. To know that our everyday efforts affect our borrowers in a positive way is a humbling experience.- Team Member, Carolina Small Business

Caitlin Davis

Eastern Women's Business Center Director

Caitlin Davis

Eastern Women's Business Center Director

Caitlin Davis is the Director of Carolina Small Business Development Fund’s Eastern Women’s Business Center (EWBC) in partnership with Elizabeth City State University. The EWBC is located in Elizabeth City, NC and provides one-on-one counseling and coaching to women entrepreneurs in Northeastern North Carolina. Caitlin will also originate CSBDF loans focusing on the underserved populations in the region and provide relevant and impactful training and workshops to emerging and established businesses in the area. Caitlin is a native of Northeastern NC and has worked in the area for the past five years. She has a Bachelor’s of Business Administration from Elizabeth City State University and a Master’s of Business Administration from East Carolina University. She has a passion for her region and is excited to have the opportunity to work within her community.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 502

Email: cdavis@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Sharon Oxendine

Western Women's Business Center Director

Sharon Oxendine

Western Women's Business Center Director

Sharon Oxendine serves as the Director of the Western Women’s Business Center at Carolina Small Business Development Fund in Asheville, NC. She provides one-on-one counseling and business services to women entrepreneurs. She also markets CSBDF’s lending program and originates loans in underserved markets in Western North Carolina counties. Sharon has over twenty years of non-profit experience, which includes business, financial and human services management. She has worked in the Western North Carolina area for over eleven years offering business training, lending and support. Sharon received the 2008 SBA Women’s Business Champion for the State of NC. Sharon studied at Central Wesleyan College and has a Bachelor of Arts in business management.

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 103

Email: soxendine@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Rosanna Mulcahy

WWBC Associate Director

Rosanna Mulcahy

WWBC Associate Director

Rosanna Mulcahy serves as the Western Women’s Business Center Associate Director. In this position, she works with the WWBC Director to develop business training events for the WWBC. She also provides technical assistance and develops strategic plans for loans by providing outreach to banks and community decision makers. Prior to CSBDF, Rosanna worked with Mountain Bizworks as Latino Program Coordinator and Small Business Lender. Rosanna holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Business Administration and is currently working on obtaining a Ph.D. in Human Services.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x108

Email: rmulcahy@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Rose-Marie Vieira

WWBC Program Associate

Rose-Marie Vieira

WWBC Program Associate

Rose-Marie serves as the Program Associate for the Western Women's Business Center. In this position, she creates and promotes classes, workshops and events for the WWBC. Rose received an associate degree in business from Johnson & Wales University and brings 25 years of customer service to Carolina Small Business Development Fund. In her spare time, Rose offers event photographer services to entrepreneurs in Asheville.

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 101

Email: rvieira@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Jasmine Hanks

WWBC Administrative Assistant

Jasmine Hanks

WWBC Administrative Assistant

Jasmine Hanks serves as the Western Women’s Business Centers Administrative Assistant. In her role, she is responsible for scheduling client intakes, general office duties, monthly and quarterly reporting, and also assisting the director and associate director with daily tasks and special projects. Prior to coming to the Western Women’s business center, Jasmine worked at Buncombe County Department of Social Services for nearly three years and at a local non-profit, Partners Unlimited Inc., for two years as the office assistant. Jasmine is two semesters from her associates degree in Business Administration from Blue Ridge Community College.

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 102

Email: jhanks@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Zurilma Anuel

Latino Program Director

Zurilma Anuel

Latino Program Director

Zurilma Anuel serves as the Latino Program Director. In her position, she directs the Latino Program, underwrites loans and provides one-on-one training and business coaching. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business Development Fund, Zuri worked as a business lender and Latino Program coordinator for Mountain BizWorks. Zuri also worked for Wells Fargo as a personal banker for 11 years. Zuri earned a bachelor’s degree in commercial and financial administration from Central University of Caracas. She also holds certificates in economic development finance and business credit analysis.

*Hablo Español

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 106

Email: zanuel@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Lori Diaz

Latino Business Development and Compliance Officer

Lori Diaz

Latino Business Development and Compliance Officer

Lori Diaz serves as Latino Development and Compliance Officer. Prior to Carolina Small Business, she worked as a Logistics Officer at Sanut, a leading producer in the agricultural sector in the Dominican Republic. Following this, she found her true career passion when she started working at ADOPEM, a Community Development Financial Institution. She worked at ADOPEM for three years, first as a Project Coordinator and subsequently as Deputy Project Director, where she managed multiple projects having the common objective of providing both financial assistance and training to small business owners who experienced barriers accessing capital. Lori holds a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Business Administration from Utah State University.

*Hablo Español

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 239

Email: ldiaz@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Scott Wolford

Associate Director of Business Development

Scott Wolford

Associate Director of Business Development

As Associate Director of Business Development Scott Wolford is responsible for building relationships and sourcing loans for the Carolina Small Business Development Fund portfolio. He also provides technical assistance to applicants by helping them analyze their current and projected financial statements to better understand their debt service. Prior to joining Carolina Small Business, Scott was the small business center director at Wayne Community College and served as strategy and growth services counselor for the SBTDC. Scott also served as social worker III for Wilson County and has ran multiple branches of several nation-wide mortgage companies. Scott obtained a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Maryland and is currently pursuing a Master of Business Administration from Eastern Carolina University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 241

Email: swolford@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Robert Rehder

Business Development Officer, Southeast Coastal Region

Robert Rehder

Business Development Officer, Southeast Coastal Region

As Business Development Officer, Robert Rehder is responsible for building relationships and sourcing loans for the Carolina Small Business Development Fund portfolio. He also provides technical assistance to applicants by helping them analyze their current business plans and projected financial statements. Prior to joining Carolina Small Business, Robert was Director of the Veterans Business Outreach Center at Fayetteville State University’s School of Business and Economics. The Center is a division of the U.S. Small Business Administration. Before joining Fayetteville State, he was president and CEO of William H. Swan & Sons, Inc. where he served for 20 years in the maritime shipping and supply industry. Rehder holds a North Carolina Small Business Counselor Level III Certification and is the author of the book: START-UP- A Sixty Minute Guide to Starting YOUR Business. A U.S. Navy veteran, he holds a BA from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and a Master of Business Administration degree from Old Dominion University.

Tel: (910) 619-7889

Email: rrehder@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Ron Fisher

Business Development Officer, Southwest Region

Ron Fisher

Business Development Officer, Southwest Region

Ron Fisher serves as Business Development Officer for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. He is responsible for business development for the 10 counties representing the Charlotte Metro area and the entire State of South Carolina. Prior to his current role, he operated his own consulting firm for 12 years providing business coaching and financial consulting services to financial institutions and non-profit economic development organizations in North and South Carolina. His commercial banking background includes community development lending, affordable housing program management and small business lending responsibilities for First Union National Bank (now Wells Fargo). He is a graduate of NC Central University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Tel: (704) 412-7031 x 302

Email: rfisher@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Patrick Doran

Business Development Officer, Western Region

Patrick Doran

Business Development Officer, Western Region

As Business Development Officer, Patrick Doran is responsible for building relationships and sourcing loans for the Carolina Small Business Development Fund portfolio. He also provides technical assistance to applicants by helping them analyze their current and projected financial statements to better understand their debt service. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Patrick worked at Mountain BizWorks, a CDFI, for nine years as director of their loan program. Patrick also worked in multiple roles at a billing and collection agency and owned his own business for seven years. Patrick has a bachelor’s degree in English literature from UNC Chapel Hill and a Master of Business Administration from Wake Forest University. He also holds a certification in Economic Development Finance from the National Development Council.

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 104

Email: pdoran@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Steven Lawrence

Business Development Officer, Western Region

Steven Lawrence

Business Development Officer, Western Region

As Business Development Officer, Steven Lawrence is responsible for building relationships and sourcing loans for the Carolina Small Business Development Fund portfolio. He also provides technical assistance to applicants by helping them analyze their current and projected financial statements to better understand their debt service. Prior to joining Carolina Small Business, Steven was the Market Leader for BB&T Bank covering Buncombe and McDowell Counties. He has worked directly with small businesses for over 12 years within the banking industry. Steven is a native to Western NC and has dedicated his career to helping small businesses succeed. Steven obtained a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Western Carolina University. He also has certifications in NC Life, Health, Accident and Long Term Care insurance.

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 105

Email: slawrence@carolinasmallbusiness.org

The most rewarding thing about working at Carolina Small Business is seeing our borrowers’ stories and how we’ve been able to help them achieve success in their lives. It’s not just about their business, because for so many entrepreneurs and small business owners, their work is who they are...When we help them make that a reality or help grow it, we’re impacting them on a personal level as well.- Team Member, Carolina Small Business

Tonya Snider

Business Development Officer, Western Region

Tonya Snider

Business Development Officer, Western Region

Tonya Snider serves as Business Development Officer for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. She works in the Western region of the state, with duties that include loan generation, loan underwriting, marketing and relationship management, training seminars and individualized client coaching. Tonya has over 17 years of experience in rural entrepreneurship development, focused mainly on training, lending and consulting. She spent 10 years serving as a regional director for an economic development non-profit, worked as a commercial banker in the private sector, and is recognized for training high-school and community college teachers across the state in rural entrepreneurship. Tonya holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Law, as well as a Master of Business Administration from Western Carolina University.

Tel: (828) 633-5065 x 107

Email: tsnider@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Kevin Harris

Business Development Officer, Eastern Region

Kevin Harris

Business Development Officer, Eastern Region

Kevin Harris serves at Carolina Small Business Development Fund as Business Development Officer. He works in the Eastern region of the state with duties that include loan generation, loan underwriting, relationship management, training seminars and individualized client coaching. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Kevin served as Director of CRA and Community Development with RBC Bank (USA) and has worked in banking and finance for over 30 years. Kevin also is currently president and owner of KGH Sustainability Solutions. Kevin holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration & Accounting from Virginia State University. He also holds a master's degree in advanced banking and management from the LSU School of Banking.

Tel: (252) 231-2898 x 601

Email: kharris@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Larry Biggs

Business Development Officer, Eastern Region

Larry Biggs

Business Development Officer, Eastern Region

Larry Biggs serves as the Business Development Officer for the Eastern Region. He is responsible for business development and credit analysis for the eastern region of North Carolina. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Larry served as Small Business Counselor at Pitt Community College for 2 years. He has over 15 years of experience as a commercial real estate broker where he brokered and syndicated over $500 million dollars in multi-family property transactions. Larry received his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from NC A&T State University and an MBA in finance from Clark-Atlanta University.

Tel: (252) 364-4899 x 501

Email: lbiggs@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Greg Taylor

Business Development Officer, Southeast Region

Greg Taylor

Business Development Officer, Southeast Region

Greg Taylor serves as Business Development Officer for the Southeast Region. He is responsible for business development and credit analysis for the eastern region of North Carolina. Prior to Carolina Small Business, he served as the Executive Director for the Fort Bragg Regional Alliance. He also worked for Fayetteville State University and the SBTDC in the Cape Fear region of North Carolina. Greg holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Campbell University and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from UNC-Pembroke.

Tel: (910) 759-7709 x 401

Email: gtaylor@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Vermecha Pulley

Loan Servicer

Vermecha Pulley

Loan Servicer

Vermecha Pulley serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund’s Loan Servicer. In this position, she provides support and management to the loan small business lending team through the servicing of loans and loan portfolio. She also manages loan documentation process to ensure credit files are updated and completes customer inquiries and research. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business, Vermecha worked for Habitat for Humanity of Wake Co. in the Family Relations Department. Vermecha has 15 years of loan servicing experience with major organizations like Wachovia Mortgage, Barclays Capital and IBM. Vermecha holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from William Peace University. She is an asset to Carolina Small Business by bringing her experience, passion, and enthusiasm to the team.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 238

Email: vpulley@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Irish McNeal

Recovery and Collection Officer

Irish McNeal

Recovery and Collection Officer

Irish McNeal serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund’s Recovery and Collection Officer. In this position, she is responsible for maintaining delinquency rates and charge off rates within Carolina Small Business guidelines. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Irish worked for BB&T as a home equity line-of-credit processor. Over the years, she has gained experience in loan servicing, vendor and portfolio management. Irish earned a Bachelor of Arts from North Carolina Wesleyan College.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 237

Email: imcneal@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Reggie Jones

Senior Loan Underwriter

Reggie Jones

Senior Loan Underwriter

Reggie Jones serves as Senior Loan Underwriter for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. In this position, Reggie reviews, analyzes, and submits SBA loan packages for approval. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Reggie worked for the SBA as loan portfolio manager and also worked with the USDA Rural Development. Reggie earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Education from East Carolina University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 243

Email: rjones@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Abby Guerra Capote

Loan Underwriter

Abby Guerra Capote

Loan Underwriter

Abby Guerra Capote serves as Loan Underwriter for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. In this position, Abby reviews, analyzes, and submits SBA loan packages for approval. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Abby worked as SBA 504 Loan Specialist at Self-Help Ventures Fund and also worked as VP Commercial Loan Officer for Yadkin Bank. Abby earned a Bachelor of Arts in Finance from Florida International University.

*Hablo Español

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 250

Email: acapote@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Akem Durand

Credit Analyst

Akem Durand

Credit Analyst

Akem Durand serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund’s credit analyst. In that position, he is responsible for responding to inquiries regarding commercial loan products and analyzing pre and post-closing documents for review. He also processes new loan applications. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business, Akem served as wine manager at Total Wine & More, and served in the U.S. Air Force for four years. Akem earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Management from Shaw University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 246

Email: adurand@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Suzanne Gillis

Credit Analyst

Suzanne Gillis

Credit Analyst

Suzanne Gillis serves as Credit Analyst for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. In this position, Suzanne reviews, analyzes, and submits loan packages for approval. Prior to Carolina Small Business, Suzanne worked as Small Business Loan Manager for Salt Lake City Corp in Utah. Suzanne earned a bachelor’s degree in English and a Master of Public Administration from Brigham Young University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 200

Email: sgillis@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Elizabeth Palmquist

Loan Processor

Elizabeth Palmquist

Loan Processor

Elizabeth Palmquist serves as Loan Processor for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. Elizabeth has seven years of experience in property management. Prior coming to Carolina Small Business, Elizabeth worked as a leasing professional for Fogelman Management Group at Center Point Apartments where she was responsible for leasing and renewing leases. She aggressively marketed the community by acquiring and marinating relationships with local area businesses. She also worked for BH Management LLC, Tribridge Residential, Greystar and VTT Management Co. as a leasing agent and marketing director. Elizabeth earned a bachelor’s degree in law from The Superior Institute of Commercial Studies in Mexico City. She also holds a certificate in environmental management and legal process.

*Hablo Español

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 234

Email: epalmquist@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Krystin Jorgenson

Controller

Krystin Jorgenson

Controller

Krystin Jorgenson serves as Controller for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. She has over 23 years of experience working with non-profit organizations. Prior to CSBDF, Krystin worked as the Finance Specialist at the WakeMed Foundation in Raleigh, NC and prior to that as the Controller at Triangle Community Foundation in Durham, NC. Krystin received her Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies from Alfred University in upstate New York and has a current CPA certification in NC.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x224

Email: kjorgenson@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Meryl Olson

Assistant Controller

Meryl Olson

Assistant Controller

Meryl Olson serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund’s Assistant Controller. She brings with her an array of accounting experience. She was responsible for Accounts Receivables and various other task at the Tammy Lynn Center for Developmental Disabilities. Previously, she served as accounts receivables specialist at a Raleigh-based company where she managed collections for over 500 vendor accounts, provided support for the sales team and served in various other functions. Meryl received her Bachelor of Science in business management from the University of Findlay in Findlay, Ohio.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 222

Email: molson@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Jameko Pinder

Staff Accountant

Jameko Pinder

Staff Accountant

Jameko Pinder serves as Staff Accountant for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. In his current position, Jameko manages and performs a variety of technical accounting support functions including accounts payable, adjusting journal entries, bank reconciliations, while entering data and processing accounting documents. Prior to his current position, he served as accounting intern with CSBDF, at that time known as The Support Center for two years. He obtained a Bachelor's of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from Shaw University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x235

Email: jpinder@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Arkela Black-Wills

Executive Assistant

Arkela Black-Wills

Executive Assistant

Arkela Black-Wills serves as the Executive Assistant to the President and CEO of Carolina Small Business Development Fund. Arkela manages the President and CEO’s calendar as well as preparing agendas, room space, recording meeting minutes and assisting on projects. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business, Arkela worked for Branch Banking & Trust (BB&T) for 11 years. Arkela earned a Bachelor of Science in electronics computer technology from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 236

Email: ablack@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Susan Sauro

Human Resource and Office Manager

Susan Sauro

Human Resource and Office Manager

Susan Sauro serves as the Human Resource and Office Manager for Carolina Small Business Development Fund. She brings nearly 20 years of professional bookkeeping, human resources, and general accounting experience from private business industry. She also possesses a wealth of business computer software application skills and database management ability, both essential tools needed to ensure the proper fiscal management of Carolina Small Business. Susan received her accounting training from Edinboro University in Edinboro, Pennsylvania.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 225

Email: ssauro@carolinasmallbusiness.org

Francine Wilson

Receptionist

Francine Wilson

Receptionist

Francine Wilson serves as Carolina Small Business Development Fund’s receptionist. In this position, she answers the phone, maintains daily calendars, and assists the office manager with daily tasks. Prior to coming to Carolina Small Business, Francine served as a job counselor for the NCBA program. Francine earned an associate’s degree in business and paralegal studies from Berkeley College.

Tel: (919) 803-1437 x 227

Email: fwilson@carolinasmallbusiness.org

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