Linda MacFarlane, Executive Director. (518) 436-8586 x.808
With more than 25 years of financial and business leadership experience, Linda MacFarlane oversees the operations and management of the loan fund. She serves on the Capital Region Economic Development Council, the Upstate New York Regional Advisory Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, KeyBank’s National Advisory Council, and is co-chair of the NYS CDFI Coalition. In addition, Linda serves on the boards of AHP Homeownership Center, Community Development Alliance, Equinox, the Mental Health Housing Project and St. Anne Institute. Linda earned her MBA in 2004 through the University of Phoenix, and a BA in Economics and Mathematics from the University at Albany in 1988. She was honored with the Outstanding Professional Award from the Credit Union Association of New York in 2012, completed the Disney Institute Business Program in 2007, Capital Leadership Class of 2004, received the Albany Business Review’s 40 Under Forty Award in 2003, and completed Dale Carnegie Training with Highest Achievement Award in 2001. A native of Round Lake, Linda and her family live in Southern Saratoga County.
Training and Technical Assistance
Paul Stewart, Director of Training & Technical Assistance. (518) 436-8586 x.805
Paul Stewart has been on staff since 1998 and possesses well over twenty years of experience in providing services to low income people and administering community development programs. He served as the Executive Director of Albany County Opportunities Inc. (a Community Action Program) and Director of Parish and Community Services for the Albany Catholic Family and Community Services. He is the recent winner of the U.S. Small Business Administration award for Minority Small Business Advocate for the year.
Brea Barthel, Training & Technical Assistance Associate. (518) 436-8586 x.809
Brea Barthel joined the Community Loan Fund in April 2019. Her rich background helps her understand the workings and challenges of both businesses and non-profit organizations. Brea taught communication courses at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute off and on for 23 years, as well as the University at Albany for 15 of those years. She specializes in helping native and non-native English speakers explain technical topics to non-technical audiences. Other work has ranged from directing a nonprofit, to establishing a statewide diabetes program for the Massachusetts Department of Health, and working in quality control for a software development company. Her non-profit experience includes serving on the boards of five community organizations. In her spare time Brea helps upcycle fabric, furnishings, and fixtures for numerous organizations. Brea has a Masters in Technical Communication from RPI.
Walt Brady, Deputy Director & Director of Lending. (518) 436-8586 x.804
Walt Brady coordinates all the mission-driven lending activities of the Community Loan Fund, prepares lending-related goals and work plans and supervises lending staff, volunteers and interns. Prior to joining the organization in July 2007, he worked for 12 years with JP Morgan Chase, including as an underwriter and a credit quality assurance analyst. His experience in traditional banking combined with his commitment to community-based economic development makes a wonderful match for the Community Loan Fund.
Destiny Watkins, Community Development Lending Officer. (518) 436-8586 x.802
Destiny Watkins graduated from The College of Saint Rose in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Small Business Entrepreneurship. After completing an internship at the Community Loan Fund, she was hired to assist with business counseling, workshops and business planning courses. Destiny is a strong advocate for developing youth entrepreneurship.
Dorian Wells, Senior Lending Officer. (518) 436-8586 x.803
Dorian Wells originates, underwrites, closes and services loans while providing outreach and technical support to our nonprofit customers. With more than 15 years of experience in the nonprofit industry, Dorian has held various senior level positions in Development, Volunteer Management and Programs Management. During his 9 years serving on senior management teams, he worked extensively with nonprofit financing. Dorian holds a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership & Development and a Master of Divinity from a graduate school and seminary in the Philadelphia area. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Erie Canalway Heritage Fund and is the Sr. Pastor of the South Berne Congregational Christian Church.
Rich Lee, Community Development Lending Officer. (518) 436-8586 x.814
Rich Lee is a life-long resident of Fulton County. He recently joined our team as the Community Development Lending Officer for the Mohawk Valley. Rich brings more than 30 years experience in the banking industry, and a commitment to community development. His experience, contacts and commitment to business growth and expansion are valuable assets as CLFCR looks to build our capacity in Fulton, Montgomery and Schoharie Counties.
Willow Olson, Portfolio Manager. (518) 436-8586 x.801
Willow Olson joined the Community Loan Fund in 2011. In 2014, she became certified as a QuickBooks ProAdvisor and began working directly with borrowers on financial statements and loan documents. Willow has a MS in Education from City University of New York and a BS in Sociology and Education from SUNY New Paltz. She is a volunteer Girl Scout leader, empowering girls to become leaders and to provide outreach in their communities and the world. She also serves on various financial and education committees. Willow and her family reside in rural Greene County.
Development and Community Relations
Linda Chandler, Director of Investments. (518) 436-8586 x.806
Linda Chandler joined the Community Loan Fund in March 2008 with more than twenty years of experience in management and business development in the banking industry and advertising sales in the field of print media. A graduate of the University at Albany, she has an M.A. and B.A. in Education, majoring in French. She has served as a board member of Senior Services of Albany, a volunteer at Colonie Senior Service Centers, Inc., Community Hospice, Habitat for Humanity and Maimonides Day School. Linda secures donations and grants sufficient to support the organization’s annual goals and activities and manages the socially concerned investor loan portfolio to secure new investments (loans) to fuel our lending capital fund.
Molly Belmont, Director of Community Relations & Development. (518) 436-8586 x.807
Molly Belmont is a marketing and communications professional with over 10 years of experience in public relations, community outreach, and business development. She served as the Director of Marketing and Communications for Discover Albany. At Discover Albany, she helped rebuild the partnership and community relations program, launch the new Discover Albany brand and website, and implement a “digital first” advertising strategy. Prior to Discover Albany, she worked for the Central Avenue Business Improvement District where she helped recruit and support new businesses on Central Avenue. She completed her BA in English at Barnard College and her MA in English at University at Albany. She served on the ACES Board from 2015-2019. She was also a volunteer for the Food Pantries for the Capital District and Secretary of Local First of the Capital Region. She has won two MARCOM awards, and in 2015, she was named one of Albany Business Review’s 40 Under Forty.
Jason Chicoine, Grants Administrator. (518) 436-8586 x. 812
Jason Chicoine was hired in July of 2019 after graduating from Siena College with a BS in Business. While at Siena, he enjoyed the opportunity to work with Capital Region nonprofit organizations through the Nonprofit Excellence and Transformation (NEXT) Program. Jason is excited to continue this work by assisting the Loan Fund with grant writing and research. Jason and his family reside in Western Rensselaer County.
Tina Ross, Office Administrator. (518) 436-8586 x.810
Tina Ross brings more than 30 years experience in the financial services industry. Her office management and customer service expertise greatly contribute to the Community Loan Fund’s ability to further its mission. Tina lives in Watervliet with her two dogs and two cats.