Our lending staff are your neighbors who, like you, love to live and work in the beautiful area we call home. Get to know a little more about them, here.
Michael Colclough joined the Foundation in 2015 and oversees the loan program as well as the Northland Small Business Development Center. He grew up in the UK and has lived in Duluth since the mid-90s.
Suzanne Rauvola has been with Northland for 25 years and has touched all program areas in that time. In 2021, she began working more closely on loan closings, invoicing, and more. She's a lifelong Duluthian and UMD graduate.
The newest team member, Amanda Vuicich, came on board in late 2022. She has experience with non-profit lending, administering grant programs, and packaging SBA 7a loans. Amanda grew up in Cloquet and graduated from UMD.
What do you most enjoy about this work, and what are some qualities you bring to the job?
Michael: I get to learn about many different industries and what makes entrepreneurs successful. I appreciate the ‘can do’ attitude of other lenders we work with. As for qualities, I've been in lending for a very long time. One good thing about that is I can pretty quickly come up with a credit structure that all parties are happy with, helping ensure our clients' success.
Suzanne: I appreciate playing a small role in helping to create and retain employment opportunities in this region. My primary responsibilities are loan payment entry and tracking and reporting to funders, so my attention to detail and process thinking comes in handy to keep things on track.
Amanda: It's satisfying to help someone with their dream of owning or expanding a business. Entrepreneurs’ heart and passion for their business is invigorating! I'm curious by nature and want to understand how things work, which helps in figuring out how to best utilize the resources we have regionally in order to assemble a financing package. It's like a puzzle.
What keeps you busy in your free time?
Michael: I love traveling with my family including over the pond in England, reading, running, and being outside as much as the weather allows.
Suzanne: I enjoy the outdoors all year long. My spouse and I love to play tourist all over the region and discover new places to eat, drink, and recreate.
Amanda: I appreciate the rhythm of the seasons. Long winters make summers extra special. I enjoy hiking and swimming, reading, and doing crossword and jigsaw puzzles.