Notable Leaders in Finance 2021

From credit unions and banks to governmental agencies, law firms, and nonprofits, our 32 Notable Leaders in Finance are responsible for making daily high-stakes economic and fiscal decisions for their organizations. In the last year, they’ve also been tasked with steering their companies through an economic recession caused by unprecedented circumstances. They’re a bright bunch, always ready to problem-solve on a dime.

Methodology: The individuals featured did not pay to be included. Their profiles were drawn from nomination materials. This list is not comprehensive. It includes only people who were nominated and accepted after editorial review. To qualify for this list, individuals must be serving in a C-suite or senior-level finance role in Minnesota, have at least five years of experience in finance, and have shown the ability to create significant,
positive, and measurable results in their field.

To nominate other best-in-class executives in their fields, click here.

Notable Leaders in finance 2021

Dave Boden

Dave Boden

President & CEO, Hiway Credit Union
Since becoming CEO in 2013, Dave Boden and his team have grown St. Paul-based Hiway from $880 million to $1.5 billion in assets, making it Minnesota’s fifth-largest credit union. Under
Mary Bogie

Mary Bogie

Acting regional administrator & chief financial officer, Metropolitan Council
During Mary Bogie’s 10-year tenure as CFO, credit rating companies Moody’s Investor Service and S&P Global Ratings have consistently given the Metropolitan Council their highest bond ratings. This has resulted
Chase Brakke

Chase Brakke

Vice president of disability insurance and property casualty operations, North Star Resource Group
Chase Brakke joined Minneapolis-based financial services firm North Star Resource Group as a financial advisor in 2008. Since then, he has taken charge of two of North Star’s largest divisions,
Kim Brown

Kim Brown

President, JNBA Financial Advisors
When the pandemic forced Bloomington-based JNBA Financial Advisors to change how it operates, Kim Brown’s first step was to shift to a work-from-home model for its 26 team members. She
Richard S. Brown

Richard S. Brown

Chairman & CEO, JNBA Financial Advisors
Bloomington-based JNBA Financial Advisors’ chairman and CEO since 1996, Richard Brown is consistently ranked as one of Minnesota’s top financial advisors; in 2020, he was named to Barron’s list of
Tom Coler

Tom Coler

Vice president of finance, health, hygiene, and consumables, H.B. Fuller
In 2019, Tom Coler was named to the newly created role of vice president of finance for the health, hygiene, and consumables (HHC) segment of St. Paul-based H.B. Fuller, part
Mary Jayne Crocker

Mary Jayne Crocker

Chief operating officer, Bridgewater Bank
As the bank’s first employee in 2005, Mary Jayne Crocker helped establish St. Louis Park-based Bridgewater Bank’s culture and brand. During her career, she has overseen HR, IT, marketing, operations,
Patricia “Pat” Grazzini

Patricia “Pat” Grazzini

Deputy director & chief operating officer, Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia)
Pat Grazzini has been with Mia since 1992, serving as both CFO and COO. She manages the museum business—both front and back of house—with a focus on enhancing visitor experience.
Dionne Gumbs

Dionne Gumbs

Founder & CEO, GenEQTY
In 2020, after holding investment bank executive positions in New York, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco, Dionne Gumbs founded  Minneapolis-based GenEQTY, a digital lending platform designed especially for women and
Frank Hallowell

Frank Hallowell

Chief financial officer, Image Sensing Systems
In 2019, St. Paul-based Image Sensing Systems, which manufactures products used in traffic management, needed financial leadership to establish the processes and insights to support future growth and diversification. It
Kristen Kimmell

Kristen Kimmell

Head of advisor recruiting and field marketing, RBC Wealth Management (RBCWM)
Kristen Kimmell took on her current role at RBC’s Minneapolis office in fall 2019. Under her leadership, RBCWM recorded a 32 percent increase in advisor recruiting in its fiscal year
William “Bill” Koschak

William “Bill” Koschak

Chief financial officer, Calyxt Inc.
In his first three months at Roseville-based Calyxt, a publicly traded ag-tech firm, Bill Koschak powered up the accounting and finance team by redefining roles and hiring aggressively, with a
Sheryl Lisowski

Sheryl Lisowski

Executive vice president, chief accounting officer, & treasurer, Fastenal
In her current role at Winona-based Fastenal, which she assumed in December, Sheryl Lisowski oversees more than 150 finance professionals spanning multiple teams and functions across the world. Since joining
Katie Lorenson

Katie Lorenson

Executive vice president & chief financial officer, Alerus
Katie Lorenson has had a profound impact on Grand Forks-based financial services firm Alerus. Working from the Twin Cities office, Lorenson spearheaded the process of filing a registration for a
Kim Nelson

Kim Nelson

Executive vice president & chief financial officer, SPS Commerce
In 2020, Minneapolis-based SPS Commerce celebrated its 10th anniversary as a public company. Under Kim Nelson’s financial leadership, SPS has significantly grown its top and bottom lines, a rare accomplishment
Carrie Nicklow

Carrie Nicklow

Chief financial officer, New Wave Design and Verification
As CFO of Minneapolis-based technology products manufacturer New Wave, Carrie Nicklow is instrumental in planning, organizing, and establishing effective organizational structures, procedures, and systems to maintain and run a small
Sharon Olson

Sharon Olson

President & founder, Olson Wealth Group LLC
Sharon Olson founded Bloomington-based Olson Wealth Group in 1994. Since then, she has received local and national recognition for her innovative ideas and commitment to her clients. Over the past
Patrick Pariseau

Patrick Pariseau

Vice president of client services, Metropolitan Economic Development Association (Meda)
Patrick Pariseau joined Minneapolis-based nonprofit Meda, whose mission is to help BIPOC entrepreneurs succeed, in 2011. He has since been instrumental in growing Meda’s loan fund from $200,000 to nearly
Kelly Pedersen

Kelly Pedersen

Founder & CEO, Caissa Wealth Strategies
Kelly Pedersen founded Bloomington-based Caissa Wealth Strategies in 2009, and has built it into a successful firm with a specialized focus on women business owners and entrepreneurs. As part of
Lisa Pittman

Lisa Pittman

Senior director, finance and accounting operations, Digi-Key Electronics
At Thief River Falls-based Digi-Key Electronics, Lisa Pittman has enabled her team to create important changes in both the purchasing and accounting divisions of Digi-Key’s internal processes. The improvements she