Founding Principal, CEO and CIO
Our team is composed of experienced professionals who enjoy working closely with our clients and with each other.
We are large enough to offer advice on a broad range of topics, and small enough to provide exceptionally personalized services to our clients. The client driven focus allows us to excel at providing financial and investment advice that is bespoke to our individual clients.
Founding Principal, CEO and CIO
CEO, Willow River, LLC
Senior Fund Accountant
Founding Principal, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer
With twenty years of credit experience, she is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the firm as well as identifying investment opportunities that fit within the firm’s mandate. Lena was most recently a Managing Director in charge of the commercial loan and senior living equity businesses at WMD Asset Management, LLC. While at WMD, Lena invested and managed over $800MM in commercial loan and senior living investments. Prior to joining WMD, Lena was a director in the loan portfolios & structured credit group at CarVal Investors. She was responsible for all aspects of commercial loan investing including establishing and managing servicer and operator relationships.
Lena holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Minnesota-Duluth where she graduated Summa Cum Laude, as well as a Juris Doctor from William Mitchell College of Law. She is licensed (currently inactive) to practice law in the state of Minnesota.
Chief Operating Officer
Richard most recently held the position as COO of Wells Fargo Global Fund Services LLC and was part of the senior management team that saw the business transition to SS&C Technologies Inc. Prior to that he was Managing Director of LaCrosse Global Fund Services’ North American unit, a subsidiary of Cargill that provides operations, middle-office and fund administration services to hedge fund managers. Richard previously held key management positions in tax, accounting and financial reporting functions in the U.S., U.K. and South Africa. His career spans portfolio accounting to management reporting and is coupled with external audit expertise. He played a leading management role in the creation of a previous asset management company while at Cargill.
Richard has a Bachelors in Accounting from the University of Witwatersrand and a Bachelor of Accounting Sciences in Financial Accounting from the University of South Africa, he is a member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants.
“Raemi has over 20 years of experience in distressed credit investment management with comprehensive industry knowledge applied through various roles with SAM, WMD, and CarVal. Today, Raemi serves as Managing Director of Loan Servicing, helping investors achieve their objectives with respect to each asset. Previously, Raemi was responsible for investing in and managing commercial loans and loan portfolios. Prior to joining SAM, Raemi was a Vice President at WMD Asset Management where she worked in the commercial loan group and was responsible for underwriting, reporting, valuation, and portfolio analysis. Raemi also worked at CarVal Investors, where she gained operational experience in the commercial loan markets, and for the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. At the OCC, Raemi gained experience identifying and evaluating credit risk in bank loans.”
Raemi has a BBA in Banking and Financial Economics and a Bachelors of Accountancy from the University of North Dakota.
Brad is responsible for managing the servicing relationships and front-line work out strategies in commercial loans and loan portfolios. Prior to joining SAM, Brad was the Executive Vice President and CIO for Key Star Capital with responsibility and oversight of the asset managers and loan portfolios. Brad has over 20 years’ experience in loan acquisitions and loan servicing including the negotiation and collection of commercial debts and various other debt instruments such as medical, credit card, auto, and residential debts. In addition, he was instrumental in the design, development and implementation of his previous employer’s Loan Evaluation and Documentation System, a proprietary system designed to track and manage all aspects of a loan’s life cycle.
Brad earned the designation of Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) and is recognized as a leading expert in commercial investment real estate.
Henry is an analyst focusing on commercial loan portfolio opportunities. Prior to joining SAM, Henry held various analyst intern positions with the Carleton college Investment Office, Moir Park Capital and interned with the U.S. House Committee on financial Services, where he focused on creating strategy and performance summaries, research market analyses summarizing economic drivers and real estate fundamentals.
Henry received his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Carleton College, during this time he was senior captain of the college basketball team and mentored Spanish speaking students.
Reeves is responsible for generating and qualifying commercial loan opportunities in the secondary market on a direct basis from financial institutions. Reeves was previously employed by Jones Lang LaSalle and Cushman & Wakefield as an analyst and associate. In these roles as a licensed broker, Reeves assisted senior management who represented landlords and tenants in the acquisition and disposition of office space in Manhattan, and Fairfield and Westchester counties. Prior to joining the team as an independent consultant, Reeves was a Managing Director and an integral part of the loan sale advisory department at the Debt Exchange, Inc. In this role, Reeves worked directly with public and private banks by helping with the disposition and sale of non-strategic loans into the secondary market.
Reeves earned his bachelor’s degree from Lake Forest College and attended the Lawrenceville School.
Jade completed an internship with SAM prior to joining full time. She studied at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, where she was a member of the Investment and Finance Organization. Here, she met with prominent banks across the U.S., focusing on topics within the investment banking and private equity industry.
Jade has a BSB in Finance from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, where she graduated with high distinction.
Prior to joining SAM, Matt managed the Loan Operations Department at a community bank for seven years. During his time at the bank, Matt specialized in building and reviewing loan documentation as well as collateral valuation. In addition to this, Matt developed a highly successful loan operations team, training and mentoring new and existing hires.
Matt received his Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of St. Thomas.
Chief Executive Officer, Willow River, LLC
Nicole Johnson-Hoffman has led diverse businesses across two of the world’s largest privately held companies, Cargill and OSI Group. She has lived and worked in Germany, the US and Japan. Most recently, Nicole served as the CEO for a foodtech startup based in Rehovot, Israel. Nicole started her career in distressed asset investments working as an attorney with CarVal Investors, covering investments across Asia and North America.
Nicole holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Minnesota Law School, where she was an associate editor for Minnesota Law Review and a cum laude graduate. She is a magna cum laude graduate of St. Cloud State University, with a Bachelors of Arts degree in International Relations.
Mary is an investment analyst. Prior to joining SAM, Mary interned at the residential real estate brokerage, DRG. She studied at the University of St. Thomas, where she was a member of Real Estate Society. This provided her with the opportunity to become involved in the local real estate community as well as to learn from real estate experts from the Twin Cities.
Mary received her Bachelor of Science in Real Estate Studies from the University of St. Thomas.
Alex is an investment analyst focusing on the financial analysis of commercial loan acquisitions. He most recently completed an internship with KPMG as a public accounting auditor. He successfully owned and operated his own boat detailing business right here along the picturesque St. Croix. Alex grew up in Stillwater, playing many sports, including hockey, for which he was awarded and received the Hubbard award for his efforts.
Alex has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting from St. John’s University. Throughout college, Alex was heavily involved in many club sports and activities including being the treasurer of the St. John’s Ducks Unlimited chapter.
Diane began her career as a licensed Real Estate professional, focusing on multi-family construction project management, and the closing and recordation of commercial and residential real estate. She led the closing and government compliance division of a national builder for 10 years and was the Division Operations Manager of a national document management and recording service company for 11 years. Diane leads the Commercial Collateral team.
Diane attended the American Institute of Banking and Century College with an emphasis on mortgage and real estate law, and regulatory compliance.
Jessica has 9 years of national recording experience and 10 years of collateral inspection and collateral underwriting experience.
Jessica attended Cambridge Community College.
Prior to joining SAM, Randy had over 30 years’ experience in commercial, real estate, and consumer lending in community banking organizations. Most recently, Randy worked as a loan specialist providing SBA loans to businesses throughout the United States that had been financially affected by the Covid 19 pandemic. Randy is responsible for the servicing of commercial loans and real estate loans relationships.
Randy is a graduate of Mankato State University with a Bachelor of Science degree. He is also an honors graduate of the Herbert V. Prochnow Graduate School of Banking.
Laurie brings over 30 years of experience in the accounting field. She was most recently working at Acre Real Estate, LLC a commercial real estate company where she managed more than 20 properties including reconciling rents, managing collections and the payment of all invoices. Laurie is a welcome addition to the accounting team.
She attended Normandale Community College with an emphasis in accounting.
Director of Commercial Loan Workout
Mitzi has more than 15 years’ experience in the real estate industry, focused on loan servicing and financial reporting. Most recently she has been focused on accurate and timely servicing reporting ensuring, collections and ensuring borrowers are current, covenants are being monitored through accurate reporting and working through loan modifications, as necessary.
Mitzi has a Bachelor of Arts – Communication and Information Systems & Management from Peace College, Raleigh, NC.
Chief Financial Officer
Nick most recently held the position as CFO and CCO at Argentem Creek Partners LP, an emerging markets credit investment management firm, in which he was responsible for its global operations. Prior to that he was Real Estate Controller for Olympus Ventures LLC, a family office located in Minneapolis, overseeing all middle- and back-office responsibilities of the portfolio. Nick began his career in EY’s Financial Services audit practice providing financial statement audit and attest services to investment managers and their funds, both public and private.
Nick has a Bachelors of Arts in Accounting and a Masters of Accountancy from the University of St. Thomas. He is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in Minnesota.
Senior Fund Accountant
Ben joined us from SS&C Technologies Inc. and where he was part of the private equity accounting team. Prior to SS&C, Ben held various financial analysis and reporting roles where he gained accounting and finance experience. Ben is responsible for fund accounting, financial reporting, and analysis at Stillwater Asset Management.
Ben received his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Iowa State University.
Prior to joining SAM, she worked in the consumer banking industry focusing on originating, underwriting, and closing loans at several banks, most recently at Think Bank. She managed the life cycle of consumer loans including servicing credit cards, unsecured, secured and home equity loans and lines of credit. Ashly also managed projects on a committee for young leadership including organizing a community giving day and focusing on financial literacy for youth. She was chosen to attend the Independent Community Bankers of America LEAD conference in 2018.
Various coursework and studies at Hamline University and Metropolitan State University, Saint Paul, Minnesota.