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ABA Conference for Community Bankers

February 10-13, 2019 • Hilton San Diego Bayfront • San Diego, CA

Conference for Community Bankers 

OverviewRegistration  |  Program  |  Speakers   Hotel & Venue  |  Activities  |  Sponsors & Exhibitors  |  Experience

Educational Sessions

Note: Information is subject to change. Check the conference mobile app for the most updated schedule.

Monday, February 11


CRE Economic Market Overview (CRE LENDING TRACK)
Understanding the developing CRE trends in your market is paramount for any commercial lender active in the real estate market. A top market analytic company will give an overview of the commercial real estate market with key data analysis that will deepen your market knowledge.

  • Robert Calhoun, Managing Director of Market Analytics, CoStar Group, New York, New York
The Changing Landscape of Liquidity
Liquidity is under pressure. Loan growth is outpacing deposit growth. Loans are becoming a higher percentage of total assets, while wholesale funding levels are increasing. Learn what every bank should do to develop a “best practice” approach to liquidity management.
  • Joe Kennerson, Managing Director, Darling Consulting Group, Newburyport, Massachusetts
Digital Transformation and Sustaining the Customer Experience
Digital transformation is about effectively using technology to meet customers’ needs in their preferred digital channel. In retail banking this begins with opening and funding a deposit account. Explore how banks and fintechs are partnering to make the most of this high stakes challenge.
  • Tracey Dunlap, Chief Experience Officer, Zenmonics, Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Jennifer Wilson, Hancock Whitney Bank, Gulfport, Mississippi
  • Moderator: Christopher McClinton, Senior Vice President, Endorsed Solutions Innovation, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
Should Your Savings Association Take Advantage of HOLA Flexibility?
In early 2019 the OCC is expected to finalize a rule allowing federal savings associations chartered under the Home Owners Loan Act to operate and be regulated like national banks without changing their charters. In this panel discussion, we’ll talk about the pros and cons of this move and help you determine if HOLA flexibility is right for your bank.
  • Michael Brickman, Deputy Comptroller for Thrift Supervision and Deputy Comptroller for Special Supervision, OCC, Washington, D.C.
  • Don Hileman, President and Chief Executive Officer, First Defiance Financial Corporation, Defiance, Ohio
  • Larry Spaccasi, Partner, Luse Gorman, PC, Washington, D.C.
  • Moderator: George Hermann, President and Chief Executive Officer, Windsor Federal Savings Bank, Windsor, Connecticut
Addressing Legal Clarity on Cannabis Banking
Cannabis has been legalized in some form by 31 states but remains illegal significant risks, including criminal and civil penalties, and regulatory action. Learn what banks from legalized states are doing to convince regulators and lawmakers of the need for greater clarity.
  • Linda Navarro, President and Chief Executive Officer, Oregon Bankers Association, Salem, Oregon
  • Gordon Zimmerman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Citizens Bank, Corvallis, Washington
  • Moderator: Rob Rowe, Vice President and Associate Chief Counsel, Regulatory Compliance, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
Change is Coming
Directors and senior officers must be strategic in transforming their bank’s business models in order to succeed and avoid becoming acquisition targets. Today’s banks must embrace a different culture by cultivating employees who can thrive in 2019 and beyond.
  • Scott Polakoff, Executive Vice President, FinPro, Inc., Gladstone, New Jersey
AI: The Benefits of a GRC Platform
An integrated governance, risk and compliance platform (GRC) can be leveraged to lower operational costs, improve decision-making and reduce organizational risk. Learn how improvements in computing technology and advancements in artificial intelligence are making GRCs accessible to community banks.
  • Carl McCauley, Chief Executive Officer, 360Factors, Austin, Texas
Meet With the Regulators: Commercial Credit Risk and Commercial Concentration Criterion  (CRE Lending Track)
Learn where regulators are heading and what to expect in future exam cycles. Regulatory experts in commercial real estate risk will give an update and regulators from the OCC, Federal Reserve and the FDIC will provide recommendations and clarifications on pressing issues.
  • Richard Dixon, Assistant Deputy Comptroller, OCC, Los Angeles Field Office, Los Angeles, California
  • Rae Ann Miller, Associate Director, Division of Risk Management Supervision, FDIC, Washington, D.C.
  • Tyler Wiggers, CRE Risk and Policy, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, Washington, D.C.
Funding Your FI in the New Age
We’re facing an economic environment not seen in over a decade. Rate expectations are rising, loan demand is stripping institutions of high liquidity levels and core funding growth is at stake. Hear ways to get a "leg up" on these concerns.
  • Taylor Binder, Regional Director, Promontory Interfinancial Network, Arlington, Virginia
  • Steve Kinner, Senior Managing Director, Promontory Interfinancial Network, Arlington, Virginia
Addressing Core System Challenges
ABA has convened a banker committee comprised of community and mid-size banks from across the country to focus on the challenges banks face related to their core systems. Learn the committee’s intent, purpose and early stage areas of focus, and get the opportunity to address questions to committee members in a town hall-style format.
  • Bryan Bruns, President and Chief Executive Officer, Lake Central Bank, Annandale, Minnesota
  • Jeremy Callais, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer, MC Bank and Trust Company, Morgan City, Louisiana
  • Howard Jaffe, President and Chief Operating Officer, Inland Bank and Trust, Oak Brook, Illinois
  • Tom Klebba, Executive Vice President, Legends Bank, Linn, Missouri
  • Trey Maust, Chief Executive Officer, Sheltered Harbor and Executive Vice Chairman, Lewis & Clark Bank, Oregon City, Oregon
  • Facilitator: Christopher McClinton, Senior Vice President, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
Banking on Insurance
Has your institution considered selling insurance? If so, would you like to make your insurance program more productive? Hear from three bank CEOs with successful insurance agencies on how they got started, grew their businesses and evaluate the benefits of their agencies.
  • Luther Deaton, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Central Bancshares, Inc., Lexington, Kentucky
  • James McQuade, President and Chief Executive Officer, Dollar Bank, Federal Savings Bank, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Moderator: Scott Woods, Chairman, ABA Bank Insurance Council Administrative Committee and President, Insurance and Wealth Management, Trustmark National Bank, Jackson, Mississippi
Staying Relevant in an Evolving Landscape
It’s more challenging than ever for a community bank to define the optimum path to success. How do you evolve to meet your customers’ needs while still supporting your local community? Hear sage advice from a 35-year banking veteran on how to help your bank adapt and thrive.
  • David McCoy, President, First National Bank and Trust Company, Beloit, Wisconsin
  • Timothy Reimink, Managing Director, Crowe LLP, Grand Rapids, Michigan
M&A Simulation  (Limited to the first 45 participants, one per bank. Participants will be assigned active roles as buyers or sellers. Participants should plan to stay for the entire session).
The process of striking a deal for a prized target has never been more competitive than it is today. For buyers, careful discipline is required to ensure that bids are designed to accomplish acquisition growth without damaging the value of the company. For sellers, a competitive bid process must be skillfully navigated in order to earn the best deal for shareholders. Work through the final rounds of a competitive auction involving a prized seller to see which bank emerges as the successful acquirer.
  • Dan Flaherty, Principal, FIG Partners, LLC, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Jonathan Hightower, Partner, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Robert Klingler, Partner, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP, Atlanta, Georgia
  • John Schramm, Principal, FIG Partners, LLC, Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina
  • Kevin Strachan, Associate, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP, Atlanta, Georgia
  • Matthew Veneri, Managing Principal, Co-Head of Investment Banking, FIG Partners, LLC, Atlanta, Georgia

Tuesday, February 12


Documenting Convenants and Terms Pertinent to Today’s CRE Deals (CRE Lending Track)
Identify CRE trends, good and bad, taking place in the industry. Learn what loan review firms and attorneys are recommending to their clients in order to stay on track with prudent lending. Leave with a better understanding of the overall effects of leveraging terms while still closing the deal.
  • Jonathan Sapirstein, Sapirstein & Sapirstein, PC, Springfield, Massachusetts
Building a Robust Ethics Culture
An ethical bank is concerned with the social and environmental impacts of its investments and loans. Hear best practices on tailoring a robust program for your institution, including how to integrate ethics into your bank’s mission statement, core values, culture and business plan. Get lessons learned on ethics violations, and learn to mitigate the risks.
  • Colonel Arthur Athens, USMCR (Ret.), Former Director, Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership, U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland
  • Rita Lowman, President, Pilot Bank, Tampa, Florida
Benefits Programs that Engage the Best Employees
Compensation is only one factor in attracting and retaining top employees. From student loan debt reduction plans, to retirement benefits and stock ownership programs, there are many ways to attract quality employees. Learn about incentive programs that will help you hire the best and brightest workers in a tight labor market. We’ll discuss program rollouts and employee engagement—as well as ways to ensure your bank’s benefits are valued. Join a spirited conversation on how to up your hiring game by helping employees build security that goes beyond their paycheck.
  • Wade Connor, Regional Director, Pentegra Retirement Services, Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Andrew Bessette, Director of Bank Partnerships, Gradifi, Boston, Massachusetts
  • Jody Dietel, Chief Compliance Officer, WageWorks, San Mateo, California
  • Tom Hutton, Partner, Luse Gorman, Washington, D.C.
  • Moderator: Kevin McKechnie, Executive Director, HSA Council, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
Benefiting from SBA’s Small Business Investment Companies Program
The Federal Government’s preeminent public/private partnership, the SBIC program, is designed to stimulate the flow of private equity capital and long-term loan funds. Learn the in’s and out’s of this program from SBIC representatives, investors and fund managers, including how your bank can benefit from taking part.
  • Jeri Harman, Founder and Chairman, Avante Capital Partners, Los Angeles, California
  • Ivelisse Rodriquez, Managing Partner, Avante Capital Partners, Los Angeles, California
  • David Winter, Partner, Hogan Lovells, Washington, D.C.
  • Moderator: Samuel Boyd, Jr., Director, Office Program Development, Office of Investment and Innovation, U.S. Small Business Administration, Washington, D.C.
Digital Lending: Risks and Opportunities
Digital lending improves the customer experience and has the potential to lower the cost of origination. But dealing with “self-serve” borrowers and other parties online can create new risks for community bankers. Get the risks of digital mortgages from a blue-ribbon panel of legal, banking and fraud experts.
  • Bryan Luke, President, Hawaii National Bank, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Ken Janik, Managing Director and Business Head, Promontory Fulfillment Services, Arlington, Virginia
  • Colgate Selden, Chief Compliance Officer, Promontory MortgagePath, Arlington, Virginia
  • Moderator: Paul Katz, Head of Bank Relations, Promontory MortgagePath, Arlington, Virginia
High-Performing Banks: You Won’t Believe Their Numbers
High performing banks are adept at using publicly available performance data. Learn to emulate the top performers by taking cues from the numbers. Using a proprietary index of “true” community banks, get the metrics and strategies that lead to success.
  • Greg Dingens, Executive Vice President and Head of Investment Banking, Monroe Financial Partners, Inc., Chicago, Illinois
  • Shawn O’Brien, President, Qwickrate, Marietta, Georgia
Have We Got Contact? What’s Next in Tap-to-Pay?
Contactless payments—including contactless cards—are popular around the world but have seen slow to catch on in this country. What has constrained their adoption? And is that about to change? As more merchants flock to contactless terminals, will this technology finally take hold in the U.S.? We’ll explore the latest trends with leading payment experts to help you understand what’s next in the rapidly changing world of payments.
  • Doug Leighton, Head, Community Accounts, Visa, San Francisco, California
  • Mark Schulze, Co-Founder, Clover Network, a FirstData Company, San Francisco, California
  • Moderator: Ed Gross, Director, Payments and Operations, Endorsed Solutions Innovation, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
Commercial Lending Hot Topics (CRE Lending Track)
Come listen to ABA policy updates on new regulatory and legislative changes in 2019. Commercial banking is indeed subject to compliance laws and regulations. How can we help struggling commercial bankers manage compliance with extensive rules and regulations applicable to commercial transactions? Get a quick moving review of what you need to know.
  • Patti Blenden, President and Founder, Financial Solutions for Growing Companies, Lake Lure, North Carolina
  • Rod Alba, Senior Vice President, Real Estate Finance and Senior Regulatory Counsel, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
  • Sharon Whitaker, Vice President, Commercial Real Estate and Finance, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.

Wednesday, February 13

Your Balance Sheet and CRE Portfolio: Concentrations, CECL and Credit Risk Management (CRE Lending Track)
Get an overview of the latest CRE trends, and learn techniques for credit risk management tested through a recent exam. Discuss best practices for exam preparation, including appropriate loan review, risk management and learn about what to focus on to implement CECL for your bank.
  • Rob Ashbaugh, Senior Risk Management Consultant, Abrigo, Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Roger Shumway, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Bank of Utah, Ogden, Utah
Cybersecurity Response Program: Are You Responding or Reacting?
Many cybersecurity experts believe it’s not a matter of if you will experience a cyber incident, but when. This makes incident response planning a critical component of any cybersecurity program. Learn the benefits of stress testing your bank’s response program to prevent, respond to and recover from attacks.
  • Johnny Sanders, Managing Consultant, BKD, Nashville, Tennessee
  • Cy Sturdivant, Senior Managing Consultant, BKD, Nashville, Tennessee
  • Paul Benda, Senior Vice President, Payments and Cybersecurity, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
How to ‘Make Banking Cool’ and Attract, Retain and Engage Top Talent
The war for top talent is in on. That means it’s time for new and creative strategies for attracting, retaining and engaging the right employees for your bank. Explore the most effective ways of optimizing the “employee experience” to find and keep top talent.
  • Mary Dalrymple, Talent Director, Eagle Hill Consulting, Arlington, Virginia
  • Tim Keefe, Financial Services Director, Eagle Hill Consulting, Arlington, Virginia
  • Melissa Jezior, President and Chief Executive Officer, Eagle Hill Consulting, Arlington, Virginia
Teams and Teams of Teams
Today’s community banks require a high degree of collaboration. We all work on teams and many organizations partner with others on strategic initiatives, but, all too often, teams fail to reach their full potential. Learn to inspire your team to excel based on shared goals, clear roles and group norms. The goal is to create teams that energize, produce, effectively manage conflicting work styles and are aligned with your organizational goals.
  • Mario Moussa, Ph.D., President, Moussa Consulting
Your Balance Sheet and CRE Portfolio: Concentrations, CECL and Credit Risk Management (CRE Lending Track)
Get an overview of the latest CRE trends, and learn techniques for credit risk management tested through a recent exam. Discuss best practices for exam preparation, including appropriate loan review, risk management and learn about what to focus on to implement CECL for your bank. Rob Ashbaugh, Senior Risk Management Consultant, Abrigo, Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Roger Shumway, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Bank of Utah, Ogden, Utah
Cybersecurity Response Program: Are You Responding or Reacting?
Many cybersecurity experts believe it’s not a matter of if you will experience a cyber incident, but when. This makes incident response planning a critical component of any cybersecurity program. Learn the benefits of stress testing your bank’s response program to prevent, respond to and recover from attacks.
  • Johnny Sanders, Managing Consultant, BKD, Nashville, Tennessee
  • Cy Sturdivant, Senior Managing Consultant, BKD, Nashville, Tennessee
  • Paul Benda, Senior Vice President, Payments and Cybersecurity, American Bankers Association, Washington, D.C.
How to ‘Make Banking Cool’ and Attract, Retain and Engage Top Talent
The war for top talent is in on. That means it’s time for new and creative strategies for attracting, retaining and engaging the right employees for your bank. Explore the most effective ways of optimizing the “employee experience” to find and keep top talent.
  • Mary Dalrymple, Talent Director, Eagle Hill Consulting, Arlington, Virginia
  • Tim Keefe, Financial Services Director, Eagle Hill Consulting, Arlington, Virginia
  • Melissa Jezior, President and Chief Executive Officer, Eagle Hill Consulting, Arlington, Virginia
Teams and Teams of Teams
Today’s community banks require a high degree of collaboration. We all work on teams and many organizations partner with others on strategic initiatives, but, all too often, teams fail to reach their full potential. Learn to inspire your team to excel based on shared goals, clear roles and group norms. The goal is to create teams that energize, produce, effectively manage conflicting work styles and are aligned with your organizational goals.
  • Mario Moussa, Ph.D., President, Moussa Consulting