Meet Sarah Danielson, Commercial Banker in La Crescent, Minnesota

Sarah Danielson, Commercial Banker

Get to know more about Sarah Danielson and how she approaches working with businesses every day.

When did you start your banking career?
Sarah: I started working as a Teller in 1994. At the time, I worked mostly with commercial customers and really enjoyed learning about that side of banking. When I had the chance to apply for a job in the Loan Review area, I took it. In Loan Review, I spent my time analyzing business financials and while I really enjoyed it, I missed being in front of people. Ultimately, I knew the best path would be to become a Commercial Banker so I could use all of my knowledge and interact with customers again.

What do you like most about your job?
Sarah: I enjoy being there for my customers through the ups and downs of their businesses. Owning a business isn’t always easy – I know first hand – and I can relate to what it’s like for my business customers day in and day out. I have a tremendous amount of respect for them. It’s so encouraging to see people believe in themselves and have the courage to take the next step in establishing or running their business.

Share your top business/commercial banking tip.
Sarah: The secret to success is having a full understanding of what you’re doing. You might wonder how that’s possible. Start by surrounding yourself with a team of trusted experts, like a lawyer, accountant and a banker, just to name a few.

What do you hope your customers say about working with you?
Sarah: I hope they see me as a trusted partner…someone who has knowledge to share, but also looks out for their best interests.

Can you help businesses assess which business banking options would be most beneficial? How does this process work?
Sarah: Definitely. It’s as simple as sitting down and taking the time to listen to a customer. I try to uncover their true needs and pair that with my knowledge from being in such a wide variety of banking positions to make the best recommendation(s).

What does community banking mean to you?
Sarah: It’s gratifying to be part of a banking team where employees are so dedicated to improving the community professionally, through their work helping businesses grow, and personally, through volunteer and service work. I believe in community and community banking.

What are some of the biggest benefits to a business to working with a Merchants Bank Commercial Banker?
Sarah: I think we’re different because our team is interested helping businesses with their entire banking experience, from loans to deposits and treasury management tools. I’m not just your lender. I want to be your banker and someone who provides the best guidance about your financial picture.

Patrick Bye Joins Merchants Bank as Vice President/Commercial Banker

Patrick Bye, Commercial Lender

Patrick Bye has joined Merchants Bank as Vice President/Commercial Banker, according to Dan Vlasak, President for Merchants Bank in Lakeville.

“Patrick has a strong background in commercial banking and understands the value in building relationships with new and existing customers, which aligns perfectly with Merchants Bank’s approach. We’re looking forward to having him as part of our team,” said Vlasak.

Bye brings 15 years of commercial banking experience in the Minneapolis and Rochester markets to Merchants Bank. He was previously a Business Banking Relationship Manager for US Bank and also worked as a Credit Analyst for several years, helping assess the creditworthiness of businesses applying for commercial loans.

“I wanted to get back to true community banking,” said Bye. “Being with Merchants will give me the opportunity to really connect with my customers and help them achieve their business goals.”

Bye is a graduate of St. Cloud University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Management. He is an active volunteer in several communities including Rochester and Red Wing and currently serves as the treasurer for the Civic League Day Nursery. In addition, he enjoys being involved in the local business communities through the Chamber of Commerce, Rochester Area Builders Association, Rochester Area Economic Development Initiative and CEDA. He, his wife and two children reside in Hampton. They enjoy spending time outdoors by going camping, hunting and fishing, as well as attending the children’s youth sporting events.

The Merchants Bank Commercial Lending team is comprised of more than 40 local experts, available throughout our regional footprint. In addition to traditional commercial loans, Merchants bankers specialize in ag bankingSBA loansfloor plan financing and equipment lease financing. As a regional banking leader, Merchants can assist businesses of any size with their business financing needs, including Treasury Management and deposit services.

Merchants Bank is a full service community bank with 23 bank locations in southeastern Minnesota and west-central Wisconsin and a leasing division, Merchants Bank Equipment Finance, in Edina. Headquartered in Winona, MN, MFGI has more than $2.5 billion in assets. Merchants was founded in 1875. Loans are subject to credit approval. Member FDIC.