Small Business Lending Partnerships for North Dakota, Western Minnesota, and Montana

Small business is built by the work of exceptional people, superior products and services, and a passion for creating something that is bigger than any single person. Sometimes, all it takes is a partner to provide the financial resources, needed to fuel the machine with necessary capital.

Dakota Business Lending knows each machine, or each small business, is different. YOUR small business has a unique story, which is why we aim to tailor loans that are the perfect fit for YOUR business.

Regardless of the type of loan you need, we are excited to get to know YOU. We consider it a privilege to gain an understanding of your opportunities and challenges and provide you with the boost you need to be successful.

Putting a small business plan into action often requires long hours, late nights, and a brand of sacrifice that is specially coded into the DNA of entrepreneurs.

We believe that business lending is not just about lending money to business owners. It’s about taking your dream, your hard work, and your sacrifice, and infusing it with the financial resources that help you soar to new heights.

Our Mission: At Dakota Business Lending, we provide financing solutions through collaborative partnerships in a supportive and creative environment to grow the economy and create and preserve quality jobs.

Our Vision: Dakota Business Lending is committed to the success and growth of businesses in North Dakota, Western Minnesota, and Montana.

Our Values: • Integrity • Dedication • Knowledgeable • Professionalism • Responsiveness

Meet the Dakota Business Lending Team

Behind the scenes, we have a dynamic team committed to our mission. When you are looking for a progressive and creative partner for small business financing needs, look no further. We are here to help!

President & CEO

Steve eats, sleeps and breathes small business financing!  He has been at the helm of Dakota Business Lending since 2010 after leading Prairieland CDC in Minnesota for 15 years. Knowledge of lending programs and strategy are definitely his forte.  Steve uses this experience for the betterment of the entire industry by serving on the National…

VP/Sr. Business Development Officer

Roxi brings a non-lending past to her commercial lending role, but what that means to Dakota Business Lending is a broad range of experience that helps her see things uniquely from the borrowers’ points of view. Roxi heralds over 25 years of business management experience in retail, telecommunications and manufacturing industries.  She joined Dakota Business…

Business Development/ Commercial Loan Officer

Curiosity runs through Emily’s veins.  She loves to work with people and help them solve problems in new ways. Prior to joining Dakota Business Lending in 2015, she worked in banking and loan servicing, in a business & technology incubator, in philanthropy and grant making as well as advertising sales. These experiences all fed her…

Closing Officer

Helping people runs through Katie’s blood.  She joined the team in 2017 with 20 years of experience in the banking and credit union world.  During that time, she has worn many hats, but most of the time has been working with loans.  She was attracted to Dakota Business Lending because it is our mission to…

Marketing Specialist

Kaitlyn is a recent graduate of the University of Mary with a degree in marketing.  She helps with all things marketing primarily focusing on marketing projects, small business success stories and social media activities.  But it doesn’t stop there, with the knowledge has gained through her education and experience, she is constantly taking on more…

Business Development/ Commercial Loan Officer

Christie thrives on the success of those around her. She joined the team as a Commercial Loan Officer in 2012 for three years until moving back to her home state of Montana in 2015. Just three years later, Christie was welcomed back to the Dakota Business Lending team as a Commercial Loan Officer in order…

Credit and Assistant Loan Officer

Anjie will always go the extra mile. Born and raised in Montana, Anjie has been assisting small businesses her entire career. With over 15 years of experience in the business banking financing industry, she has joined the Dakota Business Lender team in order to work alongside lenders to help small businesses grow and further expand…

Credit & Underwriting Specialist

Paige is always helping others be their best! A Fargo/Moorhead native, Paige has been a part of the business and finance industry and has never looked back. She joined the Dakota Business Lender team after five years of teller, relationship banker, and credit analyst experience. Paige has joined the Dakota Business Lender team to further…

Servicing Specialist & Office Manager

Lexi thrives on new experiences. Originally from Missouri, Lexi’s desire to be closer to her family in the upper Midwest is what brought her to North Dakota. She is a recent graduate from Missouri State University and has joined the Dakota Business Lending team in order to grow her career as well as provide direct…

Loan Operations

Ann turns ideas into reality and brings concepts to life. A native of southern Minnesota, Ann has over 35 years of economic development and SBA 504 and 7(a) lending experience, 22 of which were spent at a 504 certified development company like Dakota Business Lending. With this experience comes a deep passion for helping small…

Business Development / Commercial Loan Officer

Jason is all about the action. He has spent a majority of his career working in a 504 certified development company like Dakota Business Lending and brings with him over 16 years of experience in small business lending and economic development. A lifelong resident of Minnesota, he looks forward to extending his impact and providing…

Loan Specialist

Rochelle has a way of making others feel heard, respected, and trusted. She joined the team as a Loan Specialist to provide a high level of administrative support to the team, particularly in loan processing, and increase and share her knowledge in lending and financing. She is originally from central Minnesota and was attracted to…

Come Work with Our Team

At Dakota Business Lending, we believe in working hard to help North Dakota, Western Minnesota, and Montana business owners achieve their dreams. We are passionate about small business and finding creative financing options. The work we do is challenging and rewarding.

As a small, not-for-profit company, the resolve and support of our team is paramount to our success. We strive to create a work environment that is collaborative, fun, flexible, and engaging. If you are intrigued by this type of work and our team, see below for potential opportunities to be part of something we think is rather incredible!

Meet the Board of Directors

Dakota Business Lending has established itself as a lending partner for small businesses thanks to the wisdom, leadership, and guidance of our Board of Directors. We are proud to have decision-makers in our corner that combine for centuries worth of expertise in the areas of business, finance, economic development and public service.


Mike Connor

First Elected - 2002

Having worked in retail merchandising management, credit and collections, banking, and with government agencies, Mike has served on the boards of various local, state, and regional organizations. He is currently on the board for Senior Meals & Services, North Central Regional Planning Council, and the Sons of Jacob Community Committee.


John Phillips

First Elected - 2008

With almost 30 years in housing and city planning, John is currently retired and is active with many organizations including the Beulah JFA, Mercer Economic Development, Coal Conversion Counties, ND Association of Oil and Gas Producing Counties, Lignite Energy Research Council, the ND Chamber of Commerce, and church council.


Dan Jacobson

First Elected - 2014

Dan has an extensive background in credit management and commercial banking. He has served in leadership roles with various local organizations including the RMA North Central Chapter, Rotary, the American Heart Association, youth hockey, and his church council.


Jim Hambrick

First Elected - 2016

With over 28 years of experience in the banking industry, Jim has focused on relationship management for small to large sized operating businesses. He also serves on the board of directors for NDSU Team Makers and NDSU Alumni Association, and has been involved in local community non-profits such as Red Cross, United Way, and Fraser, Ltd.

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Kim Kautzman

First Elected - 2019

Kim has an extensive background in the financial industry. With over 20 years of experience in banking world, Kim has developed a strong passion for promoting economic development. She understands the value of these programs and works to utilize all the financial tools available to help businesses grow and reach their full potential.

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Tonya Holmstrom

First Elected - 2019

As a CPA and current partner of Schmitz-Holmstrom, Tonya brings over 15 years of public accounting experience in various industries and business sizes. She also serves on various other boards throughout the state including Greater North Dakota Chamber, the Missouri Family YMCA, and the University of Jamestown Alumni Association.

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Jason Hopfauf

First Elected - 2020

With over 22 years of working in the banking and finance industry, Jason has gained experience with management and all aspects of commercial lending. He brings with him a passion for fostering and growing the community, and currently serves on several boards throughout the state including the Dickinson State University Booster Board, Dickinson Baseball Club, Badlands Big Sticks Baseball Clubs, and past President of CHI St. Joseph’s/St. Alexius Foundation.

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Steve Gehrtz

First Elected - 2020

As President of Gehrtz Construction Services, Steve brings over 35 years of leadership and construction management experience and a passion for developing the community. He also serves on other various boards including Triumph Lutheran Brethren Church's Long Range Planning and Building Committees, the Industry Advisory Council for the Construction Management Department at NDSU, and the Moorhead Business Association.

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Cole Keney

First Elected - 2021

With over 18 years in the banking and finance industry, Cole has focused on commercial relationships and being a trusted point of contact for businesses. He has been a part of several other boards and organizations such as United Way, F/M/WF Chamber of Commerce, F/M AM Rotary Club, and RMA North Central Chapter and was named Prairie Business Magazine’s “40 Under 40” in 2016.