✰SDC SPOTLIGHT ✰ Yolanda Merriweather: Executive Director
We are kicking off a new monthly post that features our staff members and our board members. This is the first of many “Spotlights,” but stay tuned for more to come each month.
The Spotlight this month is on our very own Executive Director, Yolanda Merriweather. Yolanda has over 15 years of experience working in the lending industry with both SBA and Conventional financing. She began her SBA journey with SDC focusing on the SBA 504 Loan Program and grew that experience working with banks in Alabama on the SBA 7A and 504 Loan Programs. While working with these banks, she concentrated her skills on both SBA and Conventional loans including origination, underwriting, closing/servicing, and portfolio management.
Prior to re-joining the SDC Team in November of 2021, she worked with Choice Hotels International as their loan consultant and liaison to Choice’s Executive team. In this role, she guided, educated, and facilitated financing options for new and existing franchisees, while also playing a pivotal role in the roll out of relief for small businesses through SBA financing options.
We are glad to have her back with us at SDC to lead us in a new direction of SBA Lending, and to continue fulfilling our mission to help small businesses and to create job opportunities within the community.
Here are some fun facts about Yolanda:
❂ Yolanda has been married to her husband, Courtney, for 10 years after dating for 7 years before that. He is her rock and always motivates her to pursue her passions in life as well as supports her in her professional and personal growth. (She says, “He kind of likes me, I guess.”)
❂ Yolanda and Courtney have a blended family of four children—three in college and their youngest is 15 years old. (He is getting ready to drive, so watch out, Birmingham!) They each brought their own children into their family, but each child is seen as their child instead of his or hers. They are a very loving and united family. We’ve included some pictures of Yolanda’s family below.
❂ Her favorite food is seafood—which her husband is allergic to. So, her and the kids have to have their seafood boils when he is out of town.
❂ Yolanda loves sci-fi movies, and especially enjoys the Star Wars movies. She has tried to get her husband over to the dark side of enjoying Star Wars with her but hasn’t had any luck so far. She does have common ground when it comes to college football though, as she and her husband are both Florida Gator fans. Living in Alabama during football season definitely makes things interesting.
❂ Yolanda has always had a passion for helping others. She began her college career pursuing nursing but realized that it was not the profession she wanted to be in after watching the passing of life process of the job. She was then introduced to finance and later Small Business Lending and she knew she found her niche. She loves being a part of SDC because she now has the platform to help others by assisting them in opening and growing their businesses and specifically women, minorities, and business in rural areas.
❂ Yolanda and her sister, Kimberly, are 14 months apart and sometimes get confused as twins. Their mom actually dressed them up alike until they were in junior high. She said she’s not sure why their mom did that, but now her sister makes it a point to let people know that she is the older sister to Yolanda and that they are, in fact, not twins. They are both beautiful women, and they do favor! Check out some pictures of them below and let us know what you think.
If you have any questions for Yolanda or would like to speak with her more about the 504 Loan Program and what SDC can do to help your small business, she can be reached by telephone at (334) 294-1453 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We hope you all stay safe this weekend and enjoy your time with family and loved ones. Happy early 4th of July!