Our Partnership with Community Banks Our Partnership
Our Partnership with Community Banks


We are experts in underwriting, closing and servicing SBA and USDA loans. VITAL has worked with lenders across the Midwest through all phases of government guaranteed lending, and we use this experience to deliver banks and borrowers complete lending solutions. Community banks draw on our expertise to improve every aspect of CAMELS ratings, while achieving their goals of serving the local business community.


You don’t have to take our word for it. Read our client testimonials and case studies for real examples of results.


Experience the VITAL Difference Experience the VITAL Difference

We are a true partner to our community bank clients. What do we mean by this?


  • We work with our client banks to design customized goals for their government guaranteed lending programs.

  • We utilize advanced tools that make our underwriting, closing, and servicing processes streamlined, transparent, and easier to implement.

  • Our meticulous attention to detail ensures that no critical processes are ever overlooked or forgotten.

  • We work with our banks throughout the life of the loan to protect the integrity of the government guarantee, so it’s always available if called upon.

  • Our team is highly experienced in the banking arena, and always available to answer your questions.



Expertise On-Demand: Meet the VITAL Leadership Team

Mike Slater




Mike Slater

Mike Slater is the president of VITAL Financial Services, a trusted lender service provider (LSP) to community banks. VITAL has deep experience with custom credit solutions that utilize SBA and USDA loans, successfully guiding lenders and borrowers through effective, efficient, and profitable lending strategies. During his more than 30 years in financial services, he has developed expertise financing commercial and industrial (C&I) businesses.


Mike has helped community banks finance more than $400 million in commercial and public projects that inject vitality into local communities. He is a recognized resource for complex and strategic credit solutions, and is a frequent presenter around the Midwest on SBA, USDA, and C&I lending topics. 

Jessica Marsh

Operations Manager



Jess cropped

Jessica uses her excellent project management skills to coordinate efforts between VITAL, lenders, and borrowers and gather, organize, and analyze loan data. She keeps all parties abreast of progress, eliminating bottlenecks and keeping the process running smoothly. She helps ensure that every loan complies with current SBA and USDA guidelines.

Prior to joining VITAL, Jessica was a small business owner in downtown Cedar Falls, Iowa for 13 years, and a small business consultant for five years. She has a degree in finance and real estate.


Nick Vonderhaar

SBA Credit Specialist



Nick Vonderhaar.

Nick employs top-notch communication and logistical skills to guide lenders and borrowers through the SBA loan processes. He keeps all parties on track; gathering loan data, organizing documentation and facilitating application approvals by the SBA. He brings a fresh perspective and enthusiastic attitude to every project. Nick graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in Financial Management and Real Estate.


Amy Laue

SBA Closing Specialist



Amy Laue

A banking veteran with nearly 20 years’ experience – 10 in commercial lending – Amy provides expertise to VITAL clients to properly close and document guaranteed loans. She guides clients from approval to closing, discussing each item in the loan authorization and submitting any amendments requested. She is certified with Coleman as an SBA 7(a) Loan Closer, and her attention to detail and thoroughness help ensure the validity of the loan guarantee is always protected. Amy places a top priority on customer service, organization, and communication and is there to help VITAL clients every step of the way.


Marcia Funke

SBA Servicing Specialist




Marcia’s attention to detail and responsiveness, coupled with her previous work for community lending institutions, means she knows how to make loan servicing a top-notch experience for VITAL clients. She works with VITAL’s lenders to process and split payments and answer servicing questions. Marcia prepares monthly reports to the SBA, and acts as a liaison between lenders, Colson Services Corporation, and the SBA and USDA for any needed servicing requests or transcript reconciliations. She also maintains servicing files with complete and accurate transaction history for all serviced loans.

Prior to joining VITAL, Marcia was a consumer loan officer with a credit union, and worked in 401k administration for a financial services company. She has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Finance from Upper Iowa University.


“SBA lending is one of our relationship lending packages of choice that we continually discuss with clients. While dealing with government guaranteed lending may scare some banks away, we simply turn to VITAL to fill the gap with their 360˚ consultative approach. In addition to VITAL saving hours of work with their expertise in relationship lending, we really value their Pro Counting service which accurately analyzes a borrower’s business and books a fraction of the time it would take our bank to make the same assessment. Simply put, healthier borrowers make for profitable lending.”  


— Kevin Brooks, CEO, South Story Bank & Trust, Huxley, IA



“VITAL was referred to First American Bank in the Spring of 2013. We had several open cases with SBA from a previous vendor that required expedited processing. The speed and capabilities VITAL possesses were a night-and-day improvement. They quickly processed the open cases which alleviated our work load. We rely strongly on VITAL’s knowledge and professionalism when it comes to working directly with our customers. Christy’s specific knowledge of the SBA landscape was doubly refreshing when it came to finding solutions that we’d previously not considered. And when it comes to accuracy and improved documentation, VITAL really stepped up. Their reporting took our reconciling procedure from a half-day ordeal to a 1/2 hour process, saving time and money for our team and our customers.” 


— Terri Pratt, Loan Servicing, First American Bank, West Des Moines, IA



“We started working with VITAL due to the unique needs of our customers. In one case, our decision to go with SBA helped our customer stay in business – being able to customize the loan and include items into the final amount that traditional financing was incapable of covering. Any dedicated SBA or USDA guaranteed lending needs to go through VITAL. They act as our experts for the packaging, presenting, and closing of these loans. While the deals we present VITAL are always highly complex, they’re always responsive and can come to the table with the right answers.” 


— John Steen, Sr. VP, Lincoln Savings Bank, Waterloo, IA



"BankORION has worked with VITAL Financial for several years.  VITAL Financial Services’ expertise and resources allow our bank to include SBA 7a loans to our line of products.  Mike Slater and VITAL’s staff provide the knowledge and experience our lenders need to be proficient in SBA lending." 


— Tim Fritz, Senior Vice President and Chief Lending Officer, Bank Orion, Orion, IL



“I am very excited about our partnership.” 


— Erik Skovgard, CEO, Lincoln Savings Bank, Reinbeck, IA



“When I was looking for financing for my first franchise agreement, my business broker referred me to Mike at VITAL to look into SBA loans. Working through the process was very easy; Mike was prompt, flexible, and helped me understand the process from start to finish. Once my financials were submitted, we had a bank interested within the same week and it was basically a done deal. I’m now working on a second franchise opportunity – the only company I called for SBA financing assistance was VITAL.” 


— Jeffery Lee Vry, Owner, Pillar to Post Home Inspection