The Secured Lender , Volume 73, Issue 7
Pages 14 - 92
CFA 40 Under 40 Awards Profiles
Last year, the Commerical Finance Association announced it was looking for the best and brightest in our indudstsry. The CFA 40 UNDER 40 AWARDS program was introduced to honor the achievements of young commercial finance professionals and service providers from across the industry. The awards celebration took place at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City, with close to 400 attendees.
The CFA 40 UNDER 40 AWARDS celebrate the achievements of young professionals in the commercial finance industry - the movers and shakers who exemplify true excellence in their careers and who bring a strong voice and commitment to the industry at large. On the following pages, we invite you to get to know the industry's future leaders.
Senior Vice President
North Mill Capital LLC
Licia graduated from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota with a Bachelors of Science in accounting and minor in economic theory in 2005. Shortly before graduation, she began her career as a relationship manager at Principal Resources, LLC, managing a small portfolio of factoring loans. Over the years she added accounting, human resources, operations and even a bit of IT responsibilities to her job. Now a part of North Mill Capital LLC, Licia serves as the company’s controller and head of accounting and human resources for the Minneapolis office.
Seeking to balance the structured nature of commercial finance, Licia completed a yoga teacher training program in 2013 and leads yoga and group fitness classes at a boutique studio in Minneapolis. Licia is also a member of a women’s community service group; she has enjoyed serving as chapter president, treasurer, secretary, and parliamentarian as well as working on service projects and attending member socials.
How do you think the commercial finance industry can attract more young professionals?
I believe our industry needs a larger presence on college campuses: career fairs, information sessions, club sponsorships, etc. Factoring was covered in one paragraph in my senior level accounting course and wasn’t even mentioned in my finance course, yet I had semester long-courses on audit and tax. Many more accounting students go into those areas than commercial finance, so we need different ways to let undergrads know our industry exists! I was a member of the Business Association of Multicultural Students club and each of our events was sponsored by a different local company. A few representatives from the business would come to the event, tell us about the company in general and also how each of the business major areas (accounting, finance, marketing, human resources) translated into careers and advancement at the company. These presentations were a great way to learn about ways to use our degrees in lesser known industries and companies.
Entrepreneurship is such a large part of our economy and a growing force on college campuses, it seems like young people are starting businesses more frequently than in the past. How does a fresh college grad with little experience and a mountain of student debt fund her startup? In school we learn about venture capital firms, traditional bank loans, stock offerings and that’s about it. A small startup isn’t exactly the ideal candidate for any of those types of finance, but it sure could be for asset-based lending, factoring, or some other kind of alternative finance. Involvement in entrepreneurship clubs or small business groups on campus gives our industry exposure to potential clients and also potential employees. I’ve learned so much about small and medium-sized businesses in all different industries while I’ve been with North Mill. Learning from our clients’ successes and, let’s be honest, their failures too, is invaluable experience for anyone interested in starting her own business.
What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started your career?
I wish I would have known how important it is to have connections outside of work! Yes, being an accountant certainly helped me when I was treasurer of my volunteer group, but the things I learned and the confidence I built as a member of the group have helped me even more in my career. Leading volunteer projects with the support of my group was a pretty low-stakes way to learn how to solicit donations for a fundraiser, use social media to publicize our events, and speak to our elected officials, all of which are applicable to things I do at North Mill. When I tell non-members about the group, they usually ask if it’s a networking group, people looking for jobs or clients. Some members might treat it that way, but I do not. It is something I do for myself and to give back to my community; I rarely talk about work with the group members.
At first I struggled to make yoga and fitness a part of my schedule but, once I established a routine, I noticed how it positively impacted my work day. I am certain that fitness has improved my ability to concentrate, manage stress, and maintain a positive attitude at work. I believe that keeping a full schedule of activities outside of the office makes me more effective and efficient when I am at work.
Licia's profile is featured on pages 52-53.
Thank You To Our Chairs and Committees
CFA offers its deepest gratitude to all of the nominees and their managers. We would also like to recognize the hard work and dedication of the judges: David Kurzweil of Greenberg Traurig, Jeff Goldrich of North Mill Capital, Andrea Petro of Wells Fargo Capital Finance and Kathleen Z. Lepak of People’s United Business Capital. Additionally, David served as Chair of the Awards Program and Jeff served as Vice Chair. The CFA 40 Under 40 Awards would not have been possible without their leadership and their commitment to the young professionals of our industry.
We would also like to thank the CFA 40 Under 40 Leadership Council and Event Committee members for their support and guidance.
Jeffrey McLane, President, Bank of America Business Capital
Roger Allen,Chief Operating Officer, LSQ Funding
Christopher Carmosino, President, Citizens Commercial Banking
Ryan Cascade, President, Ares Management LLC
Marianne Cordora, Syndicate Executive, Regions Business Capital
John DePledge, Business Head, Citi Commercial Bank, Asset Based Finance
Marc J. Heller, President, CIT Commercial Services
Janet Jarrett, Managing Director, SunTrust Robinson Humphrey
Kurt Marsden, Executive Vice President and Head of the Corporate Finance Group,Wells Fargo Capital Finance
Joseph F. Nemia,, Executive Vice President, Head of ABL, TD Bank
Thomas K. Otte, Chairman, White Oak Commercial Finance
Samuel S. Philbrick, President, U.S. Bank Asset Based Finance
Michael Scolaro, Managing Director, BMO Harris Bank
Michael Sharkey, President, MB Business Capital
J. Michael Stanley, Managing Director, Rosenthal & Rosenthal, Inc.
Ian Watson, CEO, North America, Bibby Financial Services
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