Andy Ellison, President and CEO
What kind of person opens a new bank in 2008 as the American economy was descending into the Great Recession?
Answer: A person not afraid of hard work, who believes deeply in the community and building a strong team; a leader with a vision to create more than a bank for clients and those who choose to be part of this new venture of Mountain View Bank of Commerce.
So the story begins… Colorado native and CU-Boulder graduate, Andy Ellison – along with Stephen Faillaci-- teamed up in 2006 to embrace a dream in spite of many challenges raising $8-million dollars in initial capital to launch Mountain View Bank of Commerce.
“I knew early on that we could serve our clients in many ways in addition to banking,” Andy says. “We’re able to give advice and direction on a number of topics, especially financial guidance. Mountain View is here to do more, to be more – that’s our responsibility as a community bank.”
With hard work and quality service has come reward; Mountain View grew through the Great Recession, doubled in size over the past five years, and looks to double again in the next five. To accommodate this growth, Mountain View moved to a new home at 120th Avenue and Pecos in Westminster with more space in a great location to provide our individualized service to even more clients.
Mountain View’s community service has also flourished over the years. Andy speaks with pride about the bank’s Make A Difference (MAD) days where the staff, divided into three teams, donates half-a-day, twice a year – while on the clock – to give back, “We’ve worked on behalf of kids, the elderly, animal causes – you name it, our people have lent a helping hand to non-profits region-wide.”
In 2018, An opportunity arose that is especially close to Andy’s heart. “We worked with CU-Boulder and Realities for Children Boulder County to provide a full-ride scholarship for a young woman living in foster care who otherwise would not even be considering college. I’m so proud that the bank can help change the future for this young lady and her family for generations to come. I want to do more of that, where Mountain View can make a true difference in peoples’ lives.”
Andy and Mountain View have both grown in the last 10 years, and his current focus is how best to help his team members become better leaders. “I want to build something that will outlast me, that everyone can be proud of for decades to come. My passion is to develop team members’ leadership skills to provide the best service possible to our clients . . . to always be looking for ways to make real contributions.”
Throughout this journey, Andy’s anchor is his family. He married his junior high school sweetheart over 20 years ago and has two teenage daughters. Andy is also a workout enthusiast who enjoys the “endorphin rush.” It’s a rush that’s served the region well as Mountain View continues to grow its legacy of being more than a bank . . .
Deposits & Treasury Management Team
Suzanne Perkins, Vice President of Operations
Suzanne has lived both sides of the banking street in her 20-plus years in the industry. She began at a small bank, then went to another small bank that was bought out by a big bank, where she stayed for several years. Over time she realized it was important to get back to her professional roots.
“I felt that the big bank was losing its customer service focus -- that personal touch. It was time for a new challenge; a new opportunity to focus on my clients as people and not numbers.
She reached out to a former colleague who had joined Mountain View Bank of Commerce, who told Suzanne of its strong culture of excellent client experiences. “When I went to discuss a possible role with them, it felt like I belonged the moment I walked in the door.”
That visit proved life changing for Suzanne, who serves Mountain View as its Vice President of Operations. “While I work closely with the front office staff, I also spend a lot of time developing new commercial clients, forging personal relationships to ensure we’re meeting their business goals and making them feel appreciated.”
Her more than a banker philosophy is summed up concisely and simply – “we’re all about relationships that work for our clients; I’m confident in my ability to add value to that process as we achieve positive results together.”
In her off-hours, Suzanne can be found working out, jogging, and enjoying family-oriented activities
Commercial Loans Team
Stephen Faillaci, Market President, Boulder
As co-founder of Mountain View Bank of Commerce, Stephen knows all-too-well what complex, hard work is all about.
He embraced that challenge in 2006 when he and partner, Andy Ellison, made the decision to start a new community bank. It motivated him then and it’s the juice that drives him today to take care of clients.
Stephen’s specialty is the tough loans . . . the more complex the better.
“I really love putting the pieces of the loan puzzle together. Where I excel is when it’s hard. Let’s be unique and creative and find a solution that brings the puzzle together for a successful outcome. It may be tough, but together we’ll figure it out. That’s when it’s fun. That’s why clients come to me.”
Stephen runs MVBoC’s Boulder office. 95% of his business is on the commercial side but also does some residential and other consumer lending. He’s built his reputation “one relationship at a time,” a formula that’s worked well: “70% of my business comes from existing clients or their referrals.”
As part of a community bank without the big name or the big brand, Stephen knows that being more than a banker is much more than a value statement. “We go out and earn each relationship we have. We put the miles in; we take care of our clients. I’ll battle for them, and they know we’ll hit the closing date. So when we do the job well, they come back and also tell their friends.”
Making the complex come together for you. That’s the hard work that inspires Stephen and works for you.
When he’s not solving loan puzzles, Stephen spends his time with his wife, two children, and their two bulldogs. A graduate of the University of Northern Colorado with an MBA from the University of Denver, he’s into Crossfit and the mountains of Estes Park.
Cindy Grove, Senior V.P., Relationship Manager
With 25 years of banking experience – in small and large banks - Cindy has seen a lot of change take place in the industry. In recent years, that change saw Mountain View Bank of Commerce come onto the scene, a company she’s watched closely since its inception.
“I’ve known Andy Ellison for ten years,” she says, “and have appreciated what’s been accomplished at MVBoC. When I got the opportunity to join this special team, I was excited.”
As Senior V.P. Relationship Manager, Cindy works with small-to-mid-size businesses and non-profits on “both sides of the house,” from lending to deposits, cash management, and treasury management. With those broad responsibilities, she’s much more than a banker.
“ It's a great feeling. I get to serve my clients as both an advisor and an advocate, working for them and the bank to ensure win-win outcomes for all. And with the strong local relationships I've forged over 20-plus years, I'm very comfortable handling any challenges my clients may face. It all comes together in what I call thoughtful leadership.
A Colorado resident since 1980, Cindy focuses personal time working with non-profits that serve children and the community. She also works with several trade associations that provide unique programming for the industries they serve. In her spare time, she spends with her family and can also be found taking time for getaways with their favorite horses.
Andrew Knapp, Vice President, Relationship Manager, Boulder
Standing beside every successful business leader is at least one key, trusted colleague who’s critical in supporting a business thrive. That colleague in Mountain View Bank of Commerce’s Boulder office is Andrew Knapp, a financial veteran with nearly 20 years of diverse experience maximizing his clients’ loan needs.
"Many bankers look for the square peg, square hole solution. We think beyond that limited approach and look for the round peg that fits the square hole. It’s that extra time we devote to our clients – closely exploring their commercial goals with them – that enable us to structure win/win loans that they can’t find anywhere else.”
When he’s not working with clients in-and-outside the banking box, Andrew enjoys family time with his children and their activities, family hiking and lake time, golfing and basketball.
Steve Benjamin, Credit Analyst
“I love the fact that at Mountain View Bank of Commerce, we only offer products that support our client’s business. We’re not here trying to sell them something they don’t need.” Steve Benjamin knows all about the value of hard work and caring about clients. It’s the reason he chose to work with MVBofC and why he chooses to stay. Before becoming a Credit Analyst with the Bank, Steve spent some time as a Ranch Hand at a large cattle ranch in Wyoming. The work was physically demanding with long hard days on horseback, bailing hay, etc. He left the Ranch to go to the University of Wyoming and studied Business Finance. He put that education to work at a large food distribution company as a credit analyst. From there, he came to Mountain View Bank of Commerce. He translates this unique life experience to be more than a banker for our clients. He says “I appreciate the way we value our team and our clients as individuals”.
When he’s not working, you’ll find him spending time with his wife, landscaping his home or enjoying the outdoors – camping, fishing, hiking. He loves animals and has a 1 year old Australian Shepherd, Bonnie. Steve enjoys giving back to the Community both with the Bank and on his own. Look for Steve as an up-and-coming leader both in the Bank and in our community.
Donald Buti, Senior Vice President, Residential Mortgage
When Don joined the Mountain View Bank of Commerce team, his charge was to build the residential mortgage division “from the ground up.” His approach was simple and direct – hire the best people who are dedicated to each and every client they serve. Not just dedicated, but deeply dedicated. It’s a formula that’s paid strong dividends for all of Don’s clients.
“All banks tell their customers they have the best rates,” Don says, “but dig a bit deeper and that’s not always the case. An eighth-of-a-point savings on your interest rate is worth $10,000 over the life of a 30-year loan. Those seemingly small numbers add up quickly.”
Don’s mortgage division has flourished under his leadership. The keys to success, he says, are threefold. “I’ve never been beat on a mortgage interest rate... never.” Don and his team then keep your loan costs down by working with a wide range of investor companies whose costs to the bank are low, so “that minimizes the loan cost we pass along to our clients.”
Those multiple investor companies also allow Don and his team to offer a more diverse product base of loans than most other lenders. Don says it’s wonderful to be able to service a larger number of clients than the competition while working under the umbrella of a stable bank.
To that “best rate, lowest fees” equation, add Don’s underlying “More Than A Banker ...” mantra – a service-oriented mindset. “We work as long as it takes to get the job done to meet the closing date. We stay late and start early whenever needed. It’s that dedication to our clients that bonds everyone in this division. With that comes the personal satisfaction of knowing we’ve made a true difference in people’s lives.”
A California native, Don is married with four kids and says his biggest hobby is “being a Dad.” All his children are soccer players so he’s an active coach/adviser. He likes fly fishing and has a strong passion for cooking and wine – he and his wife spend a lot of quality kitchen time together creating new taste sensations.
Don’s kitchen habits and his office approach mirror one another . . . use the best ingredients available, fold in passion for what you’re doing, and each recipe will net a tasty, beneficial outcome for all to enjoy. Simple, direct, and successful.
Joseph Blake Jr., Senior Mortgage BankerWhen you do business with Joe Blake and Mountain View Bank of Commerce, you know you’re working with more than a banker. You’re working with a competent professional who understands not only mortgages but people.
A third generation Coloradan, Joe understands the unique needs of Colorado home buyers. His involvement in real estate and home building in the 1980s and 90s paved the way for a lifelong love of mortgage beginning in 2004.
Working at Mountain View Bank means working with a team that is committed to the highest level of service at every stage of the home buying process. “Great atmosphere — authentic and genuine,” says Joe. “We really care about our clients and have their best interests at heart.”
“Mortgage banking is about serving people and helping them achieve their dreams of home ownership. When we take care of clients, referral sources, and our team, everyone comes out ahead.”
Joe is married with four grown children and three granddaughters. When he’s not taking care of his clients, you’ll find him working in the yard of his newly purchased 1941 fixer-upper, brunching with his wife at Lucille’s, or sipping a scotch on the back patio.
Wendy Hartman, Mortgage Banker
Wendy has been helping local Colorado families with their mortgage needs for more than two decades. She still loves the thrill of helping families buy a home, especially first-time home buyers. She also is so grateful for all the referrals and repeat business that not only fuel her day, but also represent the trust and confidence that she earns from her clients. She relates to everyone and works hard to understand their goals and objectives and only provides solutions that meet those goals and objectives. She is more than a banker for her clients
Her path to become a mortgage guru was anything but typical. She grew up on the Jersey shore. She was a cable TV star in High School and hosted local shows where she interviewed many community leaders. She went to Penn State with the intent to major in Journalism. She switched to Organic Chemistry because she thought she could help more people as a doctor. She put her plans to be a doctor on hold to raise a family. When she returned to work, she did one of those career exploration assessments and found out that she had a natural acumen in both analytics and people. The assessment recommended that she become a detective or a mortgage banker. We're sure glad she chose to be a mortgage banker.
When Wendy isn't working, she is hanging out with her dog, Frenchie, and friends. She also has a passion for helping first responders, some of the heroes in our community. She sits on the Board of the Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers and helps them raise money to stop crime in our communities. If you have a mortgage need or question, please give her a call!
Ashley Fusco, Mortgage Operations Manager
Quality client service – that true caring experience - is the gold standard we all seek when interacting with any business. You’ll find that gold with Ashley Fusco in Mountain View Bank’s mortgage division.
Experienced in residential and commercial banking in Alabama, Ashley was ready for a change of scenery three years ago. With family in Colorado, she checked job boards here and found a Mountain View Bank opening that was appealing. She pursued and landed the job, which began a very special chapter in her professional life.
“It’s a very different environment here from other banks. It’s all about taking care of our clients - whatever it takes. It’s exciting, touching, and heartwarming to work with clients to ensure we get them into that new home. We’re truly here for them – it’s a simple, honest, and uniquely successful formula that we embrace every day.”
Ashley is more than a banker for you through the product diversity she offers. “We work with many different, top notch investment companies to ensure you get the best mortgage package possible. And we’re licensed to write home loans in 46 states, so we’re here for you in Colorado and across the nation. We’re growing with you.”
In her free time Ashley’s a fan of hiking the Rockies with her husband, playing with her two dogs, enjoys playing volleyball, and always cheers for the Alabama football team. Roll Tide!
Mallie Saville, Mortgage Operations Associate
Mallie is excited to have her first office job. Before she started, she says she was nervous about how other people in the organization with more tenure might treat her. Mallie said “everybody at Mountain View Bank of Commerce is focused on the client and so they’re friendly and helpful. I even have a few different people that have become professional mentors for me here at the Bank. I love it here.”
Mallie’s favorite part about her job is after the closing.
“The client just bought their dream home – it’s a great feeling. Everybody takes a deep breath and enjoys the moment. That’s where I go to work in helping to make sure everything after the closing gets done smoothly and efficiently.”
That’s why Mallie is more than a banker.
Mallie comes from a big family in Alabama with 5 brother and sisters. She’s currently enrolled at Auburn University and planning to graduate in 2021 with a degree in Accounting and Economics. When she’s not busy studying or working, you’ll find her hanging out with her family and friends as she loves to be around people and hanging out with her Great Dane puppy.
Paula Valdez, Loan Operations Manager
In every successful operation there are the behind-the-scenes team members instrumental in making the magic happen. Paula is one of those magicians at Mountain View Bank of Commerce where she does “everything from start-to-finish once your commercial loan is approved.”
While you may not see Paula on the front-end of your loan process, she prepares the many documents that ensure you get to closing in a timely manner. “I’ll give the client the initial checklist of documentation we need, gather that information, and prepare the loan package so there’s no delay in meeting the client’s timeline.”
You may see Paula at the loan closing when she becomes the client point person to make your more than a banker post-loan experience as smooth and seamless as possible.
“At closing, I begin my formal relationship with the client, answering questions, processing payments, mailing out information notices – maintaining the loan file until it’s paid off. The loan cycle can be a stressful one . . . I help make sure the road ahead has the fewest bumps possible.
Paula’s life also revolves around her “baseball family.” She’s got a teenage son who’s “heavy into baseball” - she was a team coach for several years when he was younger. She and her husband are now “super fans,” supporting their son in all school-related activities. Paula’s also a big Rockies fan and is a gardener with an impressive green thumb.