Senior vice president and commercial banking manager, Bank of Marin, 504 Redwood Hwy., Novato 415-884-7789, www.bankofmarin.com

Age: 53

Residence: San Rafael

Professional background: Banking

Education: Stanford University

Staff: nine direct reports

Tell us about yourself and your company: I’m very proud to be associated with Bank of Marin, as it represents my personal values of integrity, accountability, and giving back to the community. As the top community and business bank in the North Bay we’ve grown over the past 21 years by establishing strong customer relationships based on mutual trust and respect. Our customers are truly among the most well respected local businesses in the community.

We’re known for our experienced, locally based bankers who provide exceptional service, what we call “legendary service.” That means quick turnaround, flexibility, and ongoing guidance for our customers’ financial needs. Our goal is to always surpass our client’s expectations.

We also believe it’s our responsibility to give back to the community by volunteering our time, leadership, and financial contributions to non-profit organizations. I’ve gotten great satisfaction from serving on numerous boards over the past 15 years. I’m also proud that Bank of Marin has been awarded ”Top Corporate Philanthropist” and “Best Places to Work in the North Bay.”

Is there a major accomplishment in the past year or so that you would like to share? Undoubtedly, it is the continued high quality of our loan portfolio. We’ve always been disciplined with our credit standards, and even during the challenging economy, we had very few loan losses.

What is the achievement you are most proud of? Helping the bank grow into the number one community and business bank in Marin.

 What is your biggest challenge today? Some of our most qualified bankers are nearing retirement age, and the challenge is replacing them with equally qualified employees. Fortunately, we have a very comprehensive training program that will prepare less experienced employees for more senior positions.

Words that best describe you: Dedicated, authentic, faithful, open minded, patient, home-loving

As a successful female professional, what were the biggest obstacles you faced and how did you overcome them? Fortunately, I never faced any real professional obstacles. I had terrific mentors along the way, and I hope I’m now living up to that mentorship role.

How do you think your profession will change in the next five years? There will be fewer small community banks in the next five years because of the high costs associated with increased regulation. This means fewer opportunities such as I had to advance in a financial career. Fortunately, Bank of Marin is at a size where we have the resources to manage the challenges created by those regulations.

Who was your most important mentor? And tell us a little bit about that person: This may be surprising, but my most important mentor was and continues to be my husband, Vic. He taught me the foundations of credit, and has always encouraged and supported me to reach my full potential. He also was a huge help when our kids were growing up, as it can be challenging to balance family and career.

What advice would you give to a young woman entering your profession or the work world today? Always be true to yourself and your values. Have a strong work ethic and a commitment to your job and your community.

Most admired businessperson outside your organization: Leslie Murphy of W. Bradley Electric, who also has won this award. She is equally dedicated to her company and her family. Leslie has successfully grown her business while balancing the demands of raising kids.

She also is a very smart and compassionate lady.

Current reading: Escape from Davao by John Lukacs, set in the Philippines, where I grew up. It’s about the tragedies of WWII, combined with the underlying element of human kindness.

Most want to meet: Condoleezza Rice, because she is such an accomplished woman in so many areas, yet understated. Plus, she is a fellow Stanford graduate.

Stress relievers: Walking our dog early in the morning before going to work.

Favorite hobbies: Volunteering, especially at my kids’ schools and their athletic events. I like nothing more than timing at a swim meet.

Is there something we didn’t ask that you would like to add? Were you successful in maintaining a balance between work and family? Yes, fortunately Bank of Marin has always emphasized the importance of family and encourages employees to be involved in their children’s lives.