Category Archives: New Hires & Promotions

Brian Harrison Joins Regents Bank as SVP/Senior Relationship Manager

Brian Harrison headshot-croppedWe’re happy to welcome 25-year banking veteran Brian Harrison, who just joined our team as Senior Vice President and Senior Relationship Manager.

Just like our Regional President, Stephen Friedman, Brian has the unique qualification of having served as a CFO for various corporations. Combined with his banking and investment experience, Brian’s time as a CFO influences the way he works with his clients.

“I’ve been on both sides,” said Brian. “I know what it’s like to raise capital, oversee mergers and acquisitions and even take a company public.”

When Brian saw a chance to join our team, he was attracted by our local decision making and community focus.

“I saw a chance to know my customers better and obtain quicker decisions on their behalf,” he said.

Before joining Regents, Brian provided banking services for several San Diego Port tenants, which he will continue to do. He also very much enjoys working with clients in technology and defense but finds just about any small business fascinating.

Speaking of small businesses, he and his wife own one south of the border. Brian’s wife is a doctor who runs an ob/gyn practice in Tijuana.

“Our kids and I go down there too on Saturdays, and I help out by answering phones and greeting patients,” said Brian. “What the kids and I like most, though, is the chance to eat at the Mexican restaurants while we’re there.”

Brian also keeps busy earning a degree from Pacific Coast Banking School, which he will complete this summer. As part of his studies, he is producing a management report entitled Artificial Intelligence Impact on Banking.

“Learning about other sides of banking you’re not usually involved with helps round you out,” says Brian, who has worked in oil and gas exploration, technology, banking and investment finance…and as a part-time volunteer receptionist.

He’s also a dedicated member of the Risk Management Association, having spent one-and-a-half years as president recently. While leading the organization, he helped resurrect its newsletter and line up informative speakers for monthly events.

What else keeps Brian well rounded? Sailing!

“I’ve taken sailing classes through Power Squadron, but I’m pausing for school,” he said. “I’d love to buy a boat, but for now, I go sailing with friends.”

He also enjoys hiking, biking and traveling when he’s not working or studying.

We think it’s safe to say that you may see Brian out at a business event, on the trail, out to sea or even in your office, offering a very well-rounded perspective. Welcome, Brian!



Corbin Dangerfield Joins Government Guaranteed Lending Department at Grandpoint Bank

corbinWe’re happy to announce that Corbin Dangerfield has joined Grandpoint Bank’s Government Guaranteed Lending Department as a business development officer. Corbin will be responsible for marketing and originating government guaranteed loan products for Grandpoint Bank.

Grandpoint offers a variety of government guaranteed loan products that provide alternatives if a traditional credit product is not well suited for a small or medium-sized business. These include loans through the SBA, USDA and Export-Import Bank of the U.S. These government-backed loans require less cash investment up front and offer longer loan terms than conventional loans.

“Government guaranteed loans can help bridge the gap for businesses that otherwise would not have access to capital,” said Leticia Scearce, Senior Vice President/Government Guaranteed Lending Manager. “Corbin has specific expertise in this type of lending, and we’re happy to have him join our team of professionals.”

Corbin served in the same capacity previously for Meadows Bank in Las Vegas. His experience also includes serving as a vice president and business development officer at Lehman Brothers and as a commercial real estate broker at NAI Commercial Real Estate.

“Many SBA loans are made in support of real estate investments,” said Corbin. “My experience as a real estate broker combined with my expertise in banking and finance is especially helpful to my clients, regardless of the type of government guaranteed loan that suits them best. In my new position, I’m excited to offer clients the full resources and capabilities of Grandpoint’s government guaranteed lending team.”

Another reason Corbin wanted to join Grandpoint’s SBA/Government Guaranteed Lending Department was to be part of a team that can fund qualifying loan applications at the pace business moves.

“I also appreciate that our team understands larger, more complex deals, and that we are able to offer the whole array of Government Guaranteed Lending programs, not just the 7a and 504 loans.”

When he’s not working, Corbin enjoys outdoor recreational activities, especially when it’s with his kids.

We’re glad to have him on board, and we hope Corbin may be of service to your business if you’re considering a government guaranteed loan.



Stephen Friedman Named Regents Bank Regional President in San Diego County

Stephen Friedman headshot NEWIt’s official! Longtime San Diego banker and business executive Stephen Friedman has been promoted to Regional President in San Diego County. Stephen will oversee operations at our four San Diego offices, which include locations in downtown, La Jolla, Escondido and Vista. Stephen, who has been with Regents Bank since 2009, will continue to work from the La Jolla office.

“I am delighted to have the opportunity to lead the charge for Regents Bank in San Diego going forward,” says Stephen. “Having been part of the leadership team here for many years, Regents Bank’s brand of what we call consultative banking is in my DNA. We have a seasoned team that is focused on providing customized banking solutions crafted to meet each client’s unique circumstances, but we don’t stop there. We seek to understand our client’s short- and long-term goals so that we can direct them to relevant resources to help them. My primary objective is to provide the leadership and support our team needs to execute on our mission of serving our clients at the highest level every day.”

As the former CFO of Bruegger’s Bagels – the national bagel chain, the former CFO of the Westwind Group – a large Burger King franchisee, and the former owner of a local commercial bakery, Stephen thinks entrepreneurially.

“Stephen combines his 20 years of banking experience with his past business experience to provide a unique level of business understanding not normally found in a banker,” said Rocky Laverty, President of Grandpoint Bank. “He has demonstrated leadership and success in consistently growing Regents Bank, primarily due to his ability to deliver valuable services and advice to Regents’ clients.”

Stephen is a resident of Carmel Valley and has been an active member of ProVisors, the Association for Corporate Growth of San Diego, the Rancho Bernardo Professional Group, Renaissance Executive Forums, the Business Executives Council and Chairman’s Roundtable. He earned a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Vermont, followed by a master’s degree in business administration from Boston College and a graduate banking degree from University of Colorado at Boulder.



screen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am Linking to Non-Regents Bank Websites

This icon appears next to every link that directs to a third party website not affiliated with Regents Bank. Please be advised that if you click this link you will be taken to a website hosted by another party, where you will no longer be subject to, or under the protection of, the privacy and security policies of Regents Bank. We recommend that you review and evaluate the privacy and security policies of the site that you are entering. Regents Bank assumes no liability for the content, information, security, policies or transactions provided by these other sites.


Longtime San Diego Banker & Business Executive Joins Regents Bank

Screen Shot 2017-05-07 at 5.22.24 PMWe’re pleased to announce that Jim Kelley has joined our bank as Senior Vice President/Senior Relationship Manager. Jim will work out of our Escondido Office. A seasoned banker, Jim brings over 30 years of commercial banking and business development experience with an extensive background in commercial, small business administration (SBA) and real estate lending.

Jim worked for several successful commercial banks throughout San Diego in various capacities, ranging from Vice President/Branch Manager many years ago to Senior Vice President/Chief Lending Officer in the late 90s to President/CEO of Discovery Bank from 2000 to 2007. He most recently served as Senior Vice President/Group Manager for Comerica Bank.

In addition to his extensive banking experience, Jim served as CFO for the sports cards and memorabilia company Upper Deck and for the computer cable manufacturer C Enterprises—both headquartered in San Diego.

“Between my experience as CFO of multi-million dollar companies and my work as founding president of Discovery Bank, I understand what it takes to start and run a business,” said Jim. “I love that I can use that expertise to help a wide variety of San Diego businesses and that I’m doing it with a bank that forms such close connections with its clients.”

While he works with a wide cross section of businesses, Jim has specialized expertise working with manufacturing, distribution and service companies.

Jim resides in Vista. He earned his bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University and received his executive MBA from Pacific Coast Banking School in Washington.

When he’s not working, Jim and his family enjoy sailing around San Diego Harbor or further afield off the San Diego coast.

We look forward to Jim’s contributions to our team. Welcome, Jim!



Roger M. Laverty Named President of Grandpoint Bank

grandpoint_rocky_laverty_993_cropPlease join us in welcoming the new president of Grandpoint Bank, (of which Regents Bank is a division) Roger M. “Rocky” Laverty. Rocky, a member of the Bank’s board of directors since its inception in 2010, has a distinguished business career, most recently serving as President and Chief Executive Officer of Farmer Bros. Co. He is also the former President and CEO of Smart & Final, Inc. and Diedrich Coffee, Inc., and he was a founding member and Chairman and CEO of Prime Advantage, Inc.

“Rocky is a remarkable businessman, and we are fortunate to have his leadership in guiding our bank’s growth across all of our markets,” says Don M. Griffith, Chairman and CEO of Grandpoint Capital, Inc., and Grandpoint Bank. “I’ve known Rocky for years, and his business acumen, his ability to identify and cultivate strategic growth opportunities and his track record of building successful businesses will be a tremendous benefit to Grandpoint.”

Rocky will remain on the bank’s board of directors.

“I’ve had the opportunity to be part of the bank’s growth as a member of the board,” says Rocky. “It is now exciting to be on the frontlines, working with an exceptionally talented group of regional executives and their teams. I’m looking forward to contributing the experience I’ve garnered over the course of my career to support the bank’s internal growth and develop new product strategies.”

Rocky is a member of the Board of Trustees for Children’s Bureauscreen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am and for the Jean Perkins Scholarship Foundation,screen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am which provides college scholarships to children of LA County Sheriff Deputies. He also serves on the board of the Jimmy Miller Memorial Foundation,screen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am which provides ocean therapy to wounded warriors and veterans as well as at-risk youth.

Rocky attended Stanford University and Stanford Law School.


screen-shot-2016-09-13-at-11-07-51-am Linking to Non-Regents Bank Websites

This icon appears next to every link that directs to a third party website not affiliated with Regents Bank. Please be advised that if you click this link you will be taken to a website hosted by another party, where you will no longer be subject to, or under the protection of, the privacy and security policies of Regents Bank. We recommend that you review and evaluate the privacy and security policies of the site that you are entering. Regents Bank assumes no liability for the content, information, security, policies or transactions provided by these other sites.


Grandpoint Bank Promotes Karen McGuire to Executive Vice President

karenCongratulations to Karen McGuire, manager of Grandpoint Bank’s Construction Lending Department, who just earned a well-deserved promotion to Executive Vice President.

Karen is responsible for helping Grandpoint Bank and our divisions, Regents Bank,  Bank of Tucson and The Biltmore Bank of Arizona, expand our construction lending loan portfolio. She is based at Grandpoint’s Irvine office and oversees a seasoned and talented construction lending staff. Her duties include analyzing and underwriting all of the bank’s construction loan requests. This includes evaluating both standard and complex construction loan transactions, interfacing with clients, handling the construction loan disbursements once a loan is approved and visiting project sites.

According to Karen, currently, the demand for construction lending for multifamily properties is especially strong throughout the nation. In the markets that Grandpoint Bank and our divisions serve, Karen says the strongest demand is coming from Los Angeles and the Portland, Oregon/ Vancouver, Washington market. Karen’s team is also currently seeing a lot of lending activity and demand from the hospitality and single family real estate sectors in many of the bank’s existing markets.

Karen’s best advice for would-be loan applicants? If you’re looking for construction financing, start the loan application process sooner rather than later.  Assuming your loan application is complete, the approval process can be as short as 60 days, but compiling a complete loan application can take longer than many people anticipate due to the additional amounts of information and analysis required.

Your local relationship manager, along with Karen and her staff, will work with you to help you understand what is needed and what to include in your application. You’ll also benefit from the incredible depth of experience our loan underwriters have and can contribute to your construction project and process. You can depend on our team to bring a sophisticated understanding to your objectives and the business of construction.

“My team and I don’t consider our work done once a loan is approved,” says Karen. “Someone from our construction lending team will go to the building site once every two to three months so that we continue to understand not only the project but also our clients’ needs and achievements.”

Karen counts the AC Hotel Tucson by Marriott (currently under construction) as one of her most notable construction loans to date. Though it was a complex project, involving two different loans and some required environmental remediation, the loan was ultimately closed based in large part on the entire team’s “can-do” attitude. The 136-room hotel with 5,000-square-feet of ground floor retail will soon give new life to the intersection of Fifth Avenue and Broadway in downtown Tucson.

“We are very fortunate to have Karen and her staff, all of whom have considerable previous experience in complex structured financing,” said Mark Phillips, Executive Vice President & Chief Credit Officer of Grandpoint Capital. “When Karen started with us, we had one construction loan on the books. Now we’re making construction loans in three states, with loans amounts up to $40 million and greater.”

For more information about construction loans, please contact your local banking office, your relationship manager or Karen McGuire at 949-483-8388.


Regents Bank Welcomes Matthew Fishman as Assistant Vice President

Matthew Fishman new headshotWe’re happy to share that Regents Bank recently welcomed Matthew Fishman, who will serve as Assistant Vice President and Treasury Management Sales Officer.

Matthew will work with clients at Regents Bank offices throughout San Diego County and in Vancouver, Washington. His responsibilities include identifying how the Bank’s Treasury Management services can address specific client needs and delivering a full range of products. These include a comprehensive suite of fraud prevention, collection, disbursement and reconciliation services.

“Matthew is a tremendous addition to our team,” said Steve Sefton, President of Regents Bank, a division of Grandpoint Bank. “He has a proven track record of cultivating long-term relationships with clients that matches our mission to provide consultative advice.”

“Matthew has diverse experience with banks of all sizes,” said Annette Isaacs, Senior Vice President and Treasury Management Manager at Grandpoint Bank. “His product knowledge and business expertise will be a huge asset for our clients.”

Most recently, Matthew worked at City National Bank as an assistant vice president. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics with a minor in Business Administration from University of Arizona. He is working toward certification as a Certified Treasury Professional. Matthew’s professional affiliations include Association for Finance Professionals, BNI International and San Diego Chamber of Commerce.

He lives in the La Costa neighborhood of Carlsbad, along with his wife and their Rhodesian Ridgeback. Fans of outdoor activities, they enjoy hiking, skiing and traveling the world.