NMLA announces new board members

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The National Marine Lenders Association (NMLA) recently announced that Jeff Backus, Lauren Key and Caroline Mantel have all been elected to serve on the NMLA Board of Directors through 2025.

Jeff Backus has over 25 years of marine industry experience, with the past 10 focused on marine lending with First Approval source, a company he founded in 2012. Jeff currently serves as COO and his prior experience of managing family boat dealerships and mastery of technology resources makes him a valuable choice for the NMLA board.

Lauren Key is a strong advocate for the NNMLA with her service on the association’s advisory council, conference, and sponsorship committees. As VP and director of recreational finance for Shore Premier Finance, Lauren brings more than 15 years of experience in banking operations, underwriting, portfolio administration and lending management.

Caroline Mantel is an active member of the NMLA advisory council and contributed greatly to the organization of the 2022 NMLA lenders conference. Through her role at Boat History Report, the leading provider of watercraft history reports, Caroline works directly with the USCG, law enforcement, insurance
companies, financial institutions, consumers, and dealer/brokers to promote greater transparency to the boat buying community.

Three board members stepped down from the board this year:

Karen Trostle, who served 16 years as a lender board member, and two years as President. Karen will remain active with NMLA committee work, specifically Finance, Annual Conference and Lenders Workshop committees.

Bob Dunford served six years on the board, during which time he worked on various committees including Annual Statistical Report, Finance and Marketing. Bob also played a major role in the development and implementation of NMLA’s new website project, due to launch in the first quarter of 2023, and he will continue to spearhead that project.

Matt Anderson served six years on the board as associate director and participated on the Annual Statistical Report and Education committees. Matt will continue to share his insights into the trends and happenings within the marine insurance industry.

“The NMLA board is extremely grateful to all three directors for their past contributions to the NMLA” said John Haymond, President of NMLA. “We are fortunate that Karen, Bob, and Matt plan to remain key players in our association through various committee assignments. Having continuity, through their involvement, on association projects already underway is crucial at this juncture. The board of directors looks forward to working with Jeff, Lauren, and Caroline, and are excited to see how they can help move our association forward.”

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