Commercial Finance Association Southwest Chapter


Board of Directors


 Joseph Acosta
 FisherBroyles, LLP

Joe Acosta is a Partner in the national law firm of FisherBroyles, LLP.  He has a broad base of bankruptcy, corporate restructuring, work-out and commercial litigation experience, having been substantially involved in some of the largest chapter 11 bankruptcy cases in the United States. He has taken leading roles in representing debtors-in-possession, creditors' committees, trustees, examiners, putative debtors, lenders, landlords, lessees, commercial creditors, asset purchasers, professionals and other interested parties in all types of insolvency proceedings, including involuntary bankruptcy proceedings and appeals. 

He further has extensive experience with creditor's rights and commercial litigation matters, having dismissed class actions, fraudulent conveyance claims, and preference claims, having served as Texas bankruptcy counsel for various retailers and financing companies and having represented all types of litigants in numerous commercial disputes.



 Ellen W. Smith
 Senior Director
 Riveron Consulting, LLC

Ellen Smith's responsibilities include practice development and client relationship management. She has over 20 years of experience in strategic growth, finance and accounting consulting, client service, and relationship development with a special emphasis. She is dedicated to identifying business trends and emerging transactional opportunities that benefit both new and existing clients.

Ellen has been in the Dallas market for more than 20 years. She is active in the community and is a member of the Community Partners of Dallas Board of Directors. Prior to joining Riveron, she held various client service and business development roles with Ernst & Young LLP, J.P. Morgan Chase, and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Ellen is a member of the Association for Corporate Growth, Commercial Finance Association, the Women’s Finance Exchange and the Women’s Energy Network.

She earned a Masters and Bachelor's of Business Administration in Finance from Texas Tech University.


 Bryan Fischer

Bryan Fischer is Director with BDO. Previously, he worked as Director of Business Development for Great American Group. 

A Dallas native, he returned to the area in 2013 after working 9 years in Chicago as a Fixed-Income and Futures Trader for Gambit Trading, and later as Managing Partner for NBM Group. He is a graduate of Boston College.



 Michael Thatcher, CIRA
 Senior Managing Director

Michael is co-head of restructuring and turnaround services for GlassRatner's Dallas office.  He has more than 17 years of experience assisting troubled companies, either through an out-of-court restructuring or a Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding.  He has served as a financial advisor in several different capacities including debtors-in-possession, secured creditors and unsecured creditor committees. He also has fiduciary experience as a state-court appointed receiver.  

Michael has worked on some of the largest Chapter filings in U.S. history including Delphi, American Airlines, Kmart, Lyondell Chemical and Chrysler Corp.  His industry expertise includes healthcare, energy, transportation/logistics, biotech, manufacturing, consumer goods distribution and retail.  

Michael is a Certified Insolvency & Restructuring Advisor (“CIRA”), a member of the Commercial Finance Association Southwest Chapter, the Association of Insolvency & Restructuring Advisors as well as the Turnaround Management Association where he has been a board member of the DFW and Rocky Mountain chapters.



Steven R. Bellah
Super G Funding

With 20 plus years of commercial finance, managerial, and advisory experience, Steve Bellah has worked with all facets of commercial finance ranging from new business origination to loan workouts. He has built substantial businesses and portfolios for institutions such as The CIT Group, GE Capital, and Wells Fargo Foothill.

Steve has substantial experience with complex transactions such as management buyouts, leveraged buyouts, turnarounds, debtor-in-possession financing, changes of control and special situations. Mr. Bellah’s experience includes extensive work in working capital management, cash-flow management, profitability analysis, asset based lending, subordinated capital, securitizations, leasing, term loans, and factoring.

He holds a BA in Economics and Finance from the University of Texas at Dallas; FINRA series 7, 63, and 79.


 Tony Banks
 Director of Business Development
 Grant Thornton

Tony is with the Dallas office of Grant Thornton where, as Director of Business Development, he represents the firm's full suite of services to a diverse mix of industries, including private equity.

Prior to Grant Thornton, Tony worked in a similar capacity for seven years with Hein & Associates, a CPA firm that services middle-market clients, He worked as the Vice President of Business Development for JD Ford & Company a Denver based, investment banking firm. He also worked in New York and in Dallas for Goldman Sachs’, Private Wealth Management Division.  Prior to Goldman Sachs, Tony worked as the Director of Marketing for Alexander Capital Management Group, a Denver-based asset management firm. 

He has a B.S. degree from Howard University in Washington, D.C.  He enjoys cycling, hiking, skiing, traveling and spending time with family.


 Elizabeth Hastings
 Managing Member
 E-Capital Advisors, LLC 


Elizabeth Hasting's firm, E-Capital Advisors, works closely with Private Equity firms and family offices to provide acquisition and working capital for targeted middle market companies. She has been involved with helping middle market companies obtain working capital for over 20 years. 

Elizabeth first joined the United States Air Force and then started her career as a securities broker and financial advisor for Prudential, Bank One & JP Morgan Securities Firm. Since then, she has worked as a senior business development officer, sales manager and director of bank and non-bank financial services companies such as Veritas Financial Partners, FGI Finance, Presidential Financial Credit, and Republic Business Credit. Her industry expertise include Healthcare and International transactions.  

Elizabeth also helped launch ABL business development for BOFI Federal Bank prior to joining Veritas.  She is a an active member of Association for Corporate Growth.


Advisory Board

 Jim Johnson
 Senior Vice President, Business  Development Officer
 Marquette Business Credit
Jim Johnson is a Past President of the Southwest Chapter of CFA.

He is one of the founding members of Marquette Business Credit and has been a part of the team since its inception in 2004. He is a Senior Vice President/Business Development Officer and brings over thirty years of asset based lending and banking experience to our business development team.

Jim has held positions with top industry banks including Guaranty Bank, Compass Bank, HSBC and MBank. Jim holds both Bachelor and Master of Business Administration degrees from Baylor University and is a non-practicing Certified Public Accountant.
 Kathryn G. Reid
 Rochelle McCullough, LLP

Kate Reid is a partner at the law firm of Rochelle McCullough, LLP.  Her work focuses on advising and representing clients in commercial bankruptcy and litigation matters.  She counsels trustees, landlords, trade creditors, and asset purchasers in all manner of insolvency proceedings across a broad range of industries, including oilfield services, construction, independent broker-dealer, healthcare, restaurant and alcoholic beverage, and commercial waste disposal.  Kate’s litigation experience includes extensive representation of bankruptcy trustees in the prosecution of fraudulent conveyance and preference claims, and D&O/E&O lawsuits.

Kate holds degrees in Business Administration from The Ohio State University and a Juris Doctorate from Southern Methodist University.

  Chris Welsh
 Managing Partner
 ARG Partners

Chris Welsh is the Managing Partner at ARG Partners.  Chris manages ARG’s strategic corporate renewal, turnaround and financial services practices.  Chris’ responsibilities include relationship management with ARG’s financial partners, clients and financial advisors.  ARG Partners provides customized financial service solutions for client lenders, borrowers, sponsorship groups, and other vested entities around the world.

Chris also owns and operates DBR Consultancy, which focuses on CRE asset advisory and management. 

Previously, Chris worked for lending institutions Bank One/JP Morgan Chase, The CIT Group, Sterling Bank, PCB and Regions Bank.  Chris is the immediate past president of the Commercial Finance Association – Southwest Chapter.  The Southwest chapter was recognized as 2012 Chapter of the Year by the National Commercial Finance Association.  He is now an active chapter board member.  Chris is also an active member of the Turnaround Management Association, Association of Corporate Growth and Association of Insolvency & Restructuring Advisors.  

 Scott Wallace
 Executive Partner
 Holland & Knight 

Scott Wallace is Executive Partner at Holland and Knight and helps clients close deals efficiently in a rapid marketplace. He counsels financial institutions in a variety of financing transactions, including asset-based and cash flow lending, subordinated debt, mezzanine and structured finance transactions, and workouts and restructurings. 

Mr. Wallace also represents borrowers in financing transactions and buyers and sellers in acquisition transactions in a wide range of industries and economic sectors, including manufacturing, health care, real estate, retail, service, distribution and oil and gas.

 Jorge Gutierrez
 Senior Associate
 Norton Rose Fulbright

Jorge Gutierrez focuses on representing private and public E&P and midstream companies operating in the shale plays, as well as commercial banks lending to those companies. He is certified in Oil, Gas and Mineral Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and prior to becoming an attorney he had an 11-year career in corporate and investment banking.

Jorge advises companies on matters concerning the acquisition & divestiture of oil and gas properties and midstream assets, general business operations, and bank financings.  Specific services include negotiating and drafting purchase and sale agreements, gas gathering and processing agreements, oil and gas transportation agreements, project development agreements, joint operating agreements and other industry contracts.  He also generally counsels clients on the regulations of the Railroad Commission of Texas.  In addition, Jorge represents banks that make secured, reserved-based loans to E&P companies.  Jorge is experienced in examining title to land and leases throughout Texas for acquisition and drilling purposes.

 Saji George
 Business Development
 Coface North America

Saji George is a Business Development Agent for Coface, a global leader in credit insurance. He protects clients from bad debt losses due to insolvent or slow payers. He also helps clients manage banking challenges with high concentration and foreign receivables. 

Prior to Coface, he was a Major Account Executive at Ricoh and a pastor. He has a Masters in Theology from Dallas Theological Seminary and a Bachelors in Finance from Butler University.

 Mark Knowles
 Condon Thornton Sladek PLLC 

Mark Knowles is a partner with Condon Thornton Sladek PLLC.  Mark represents lenders and borrowers in complex domestic and international financings.  He has extensive experience in connection with syndicated credit facilities, leveraged finance, acquisition finance, asset-based financings, first/second lien financings, complex inter-creditor arrangements, project financings, debt restructurings and workouts, derivatives, and structured trade finance transactions.  Mark’s clients include financial institutions, private equity firms, funds, and public and private companies.

 Frank Bonet
 Senior Vice President
 PNC Business Credit

Frank Bonet is a Senior Vice President and Business Development Officer for PNC Business Credit.

He has over 25 years of diversified experience in banking and commercial lending. Prior to PNC Business Credit, Frank held business development positions with Briar Capital L.P., First Community Financial, Spectrum Commercial Services, Bank of America and Deutsche Bank. 

Frank is a member of the Association For Corporate Growth, Turnaround Management Association, Commercial Finance Association and The Finance Forum.

He earned a Bachelor’s degree from Stephen F. Austin State University. 

 Anthony Herrera
 Holland & Knight

Anthony J. Herrera is a Partner in Holland & Knight's  Dallas office and a member of the Firm’s Business Department. He primarily represents capital providers such as banks, finance companies, private equity groups, hedge funds and other debt and equity investors.

He focuses his practice on negotiating, structuring, and documenting transactions involving senior secured credit facilities, junior capital and mezzanine facilities as well as acquisition finance, equipment finance and structured finance. Additionally,
Mr. Herrera regularly advises clients in debt and equity restructurings, workouts and recapitalizations.
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