Coleman Movers & Shakers – Joe Diggs, Kim Eells, and Gulf Coast Small Business Lending BDOs

December 22, 2022

Delaney Sexton
Contributing Editor

Coleman Movers & Shakers – Joe Diggs, Kim Eells, and Gulf Coast Small Business Lending BDOs

First Bank Welcomes Joe Diggs and Kim Eells to SBA Lending Team

First Bank’s Specialty Lending Executive, Jerry Kinlaw, says of Diggs and Eells joining First Bank, “Joe and Kim both bring so much experience and respect to this organization. We have aligned our model to help small businesses not just in the Carolinas, where we’re headquartered, but nationwide, so that we can be a top SBA Lender. Joe and his team, including Kim, can definitely help with that and will bring top talent to our organization as well.”

Joe Diggs, a 30-year veteran of commercial and governmental lending, has joined the First Bank SBA Sales team as the SVP & Senior Sales Leader. He will be leading a team of top producers throughout the southeast who help small businesses finance their growing business needs.

Diggs has an extensive background in commercial lending, commercial real estate, credit risk management, capital markets & federal regulatory sectors. A native of Washington, DC, he has called Charlotte, NC his home for the past 15 years. He served in the U.S. Army Reserve as a Special Operation Forces soldier assigned to the 82nd Airborne in Ft. Bragg, NC, is the owner/operator of a global fitness franchise and is the former Lt. Heavyweight Boxing Champion. He is also the Founder and Executive Director of the Roll With the Punches Foundation, Inc. and is currently producing a mental health awareness event titled “It’s Okay Knot To Be Okay” that will be held in Washington, DC during May 2023.

Diggs says of his move to First Bank, “First Bank is a financially sound bank that serves the greater community very well and is positioned for growth in the Carolinas. The organizational culture promotes team building and senior leadership emphasizes talent placement in key roles. This role provides me an opportunity to enhance, build and retool a high-performing full-service national team in the government-guaranteed lending space, focusing primarily on SBA 7(a) and SBA 504 lending and I am very excited.”

Additionally, as a part of Diggs’s team, Kim Eells has joined First Bank as an SBA Business Development Officer based out of Conyers, Georgia. Eells brings 26 years of government lending experience and is most looking forward to being able to apply that experience and lending capability on a broader scale with the First Bank national model.

When not helping small businesses grow, Eells can be found engaging with the Georgia Lenders Quality Circle, serving as the 2022 Chair and a recipient of the Lifetime Commitment Award in 2017. Additionally, she is an affiliate representative on the Board of the Georgia Association of Business Brokers and is very active with her grandchildren and an avid painter.

Eells says of her move to First Bank, “I am excited about working with a regional bank that understands SBA lending and look forward to having a bigger footprint to lend to these businesses who need it. I am very passionate about helping small businesses.”

Gulf Coast Small Business Lending Announces Hiring of 5 New BDOs

“We are thrilled to have this terrific group of 5 join our Gulf Coast Small Business Lending team. Pat is a player/coach and his years of successful experience in the SBA industry means that he is ideally suited to lead our Southeast Region originations team. Griffin and Denee’ will spearhead our efforts in North Carolina, Dalton is part of our expansion in Texas, and Eric represents our entrée into the Northeast,” says Larry Moran, President of the Gulf Coast Small Business Lending Southeast Region. Moran went on to state that “this team hit the ground running and is actively offering SBA loans throughout the United States. Gulf Coast Small Business Lending is very bullish on SBA lending and these additions demonstrate a commitment to our growth, particularly in the Southeast, and to our support of America’s small businesses.”

Gulf Coast Small Business Lending (GCSBL) announced that it has hired 5 new business development officers:
Patrick Moore as SVP – Southeast Region Sales Manager
Griffin Laughridge as VP – Business Development Officer
Denee’ Agresti as AVP – Business Development Officer
Dalton Brown as VP – Business Development Officer
Eric Feingold as VP – Business Development Officer.

Patrick Moore brings over 30 years of financial services experience to his new role at Gulf Coast Small Business Lending. Since 2001, Pat has been dedicated to SBA/USDA lending and he also has significant experience in both originations and credit.

Denee’ Agresti has spent the last two decades working in various medical and financial services sales positions and is now using her unique insights and experience to assist small business owners with their SBA borrowing needs.

Griffin Laughridge brings over 20 years of financial services experience focusing primarily on providing capital to business owners for a wide variety of projects to his new role at Gulf Coast Small Business Lending.

Dalton Brown has over 7 years of financial services experience, all with an exclusive focus on SBA lending.

Eric Feingold has over 30 years of wide-ranging financial services experience covering capital markets, entrepreneurship, and just about everything in between. Over the years, Eric has utilized his entrepreneurial expertise to help build several businesses in the service and sales sectors and has also worked as an intermediary between prospective buyers and hundreds of franchise concepts. It is this franchise experience that led Eric to develop a specialization in SBA lending focused on business acquisition and franchise transactions.