[caption id="attachment_32208" align="alignleft" width="313" caption="Michael Ledwich and Jamie Buffington"][/caption]

NAPA -- Bay Commercial Bank, headquartered in Walnut Creek, has made the first steps at a Napa presence by hiring two former Charter Oak Bank executives.

Bank of Marin acquired Charter Oak in February in an Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.- assisted takeover.

Prior to hiring former Charter Oak executives Mike Ledwich and Jamie Buffington as Napa market relationship managers, Bay Commercial had sought a presence in Napa through talks of a merger with the now-failed Charter Oak.

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"Bay Commercial Bank is thrilled to have experienced and knowledgeable team members to head up our expansion into the Napa Valley," said Mike O'Neill, executive vice president and chief banking officer. "We have been diligently working  to move into this market for over a year and feel confident we have the team to make our move successful."

Mr. Ledwich was executive vice president and chief credit officer for Charter Oak Bank. As a senior vice president of Bay Commercial, he will concentrate on commercial and construction real estate lending, all areas of vineyard and winery financing, business lines of credit and term loans. He is a life-long resident of Napa and has been in the banking industry for 25 years.

Ms. Buffington now is a vice president with Bay Commercial and will concentrate on all facets of lending, private banking and commercial deposit relationships.  She is also a life-long Napan and has been in the banking industry for 25 years.

In November of last year, the boards of directors of Bay Commercial and Charter Oak announced that Bay Commercial had agreed to acquire Charter Oak Bank in an all-stock transaction. The transaction required the approval of regulators, who in February of this year assisted Bank of Marin in the acquisition.

Currently, the two new relationship managers are working out of their homes, according to Karla Garcia, spokeswoman for Bay Commercial.