About Us

Capital Finance utilizes several professionals to bring the maximum breadth and depth of experience and expertise to every case regardless of how narrowly defined the issues may be. Although each professional has many years of experience in banking and financial matters, their individual careers have given them a special level of knowledge in areas such as commercial lending, asset based finance, commercial and residential mortgage lending, loan participations and syndications, community banking, banking operations and correspondent banking. Below you can easily review short biographies with links to the complete curriculum vitae of some of our people.

Steven I. Fried | Terry S. Kaplan, Esq. | Stephen D. Morrison | Michael F. Richards | Kathleen Lewek | Tay Fried

STEVEN I. FRIED 

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Mr. Fried is a native of New Jersey. After graduating with a B. A. degree in Economics and Business Administration from Rutgers University, Mr. Fried attended the Bernard M. Baruch School of C.U.N.Y., majoring in Finance and Investments. In 1968 he joined the Bankers Trust Company, 16 Wall Street, New York, as a management trainee rising quickly through the ranks until 1974, when he joined Union Bank, Los Angeles, in their Regional Head Office as a Vice President and Team Leader.

Beginning in 1979, he entered the field of Independent Banking, specializing in rehabilitating troubled banks of from $11 million to $425 million in asset size. He has been the President and Chief Executive Officer of three different independent banks and a senior policy-making officer of financial institutions for over twenty years. He has spoken before numerous industry, consumer and banking groups on the subject of banking and business finance. His expertise in assisting businesses with their financial needs has earned him guest appearances on the Bill Handel Show (KFI Radio), “Tax Loopholes-The Radio Show” (KPSI Radio) and the Chuck Ashman Show (KBLA Radio) as well as having been interviewed by Fox News and other media outlets. He has spoken before various Chambers of Commerce on financing businesses, testified before the Securities and Exchange Commission on enhancing capital formation for businesses and numerous times as an expert witness on matters related to all aspects of banking and commercial finance. In 1992, he was named the Financial Services Advocate of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

In 1991 Mr. Fried was appointed Chairman for California and Hawaii of the Independent Bankers Association of America Political Action Committee and in December, 1992 he was named President of the California Independent Bankers Association, the state association representing 260 banks across the state of California. Mr. Fried is the sole owner of Capital Finance, a commercial finance and financial consulting concern established in 1987, providing expert witness testimony, litigation support and consulting services to the banking, business, financial and legal community. {Curriculum Vitae}

TERRY S. KAPLAN, ESQ. 

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Terry S. Kaplan is a practicing attorney with 40 years’ experience in commercial litigation. Terry is a graduate of UCLA (with honors) and graduated from the University of Southern California School of Law (Order of the Coif, USC Law Review, Comment Editor). He was admitted to the California Bar in 1972 and is A.V. rated by Martindale Hubbell. He has 39 years’ experience representing banks and financial institutions in all aspects of litigation, with particular experience in insurance related matters and financial institution bond claims. Terry specializes in title insurance matters (including claims, litigation, bad faith, title issues), insurance bad faith, escrows, attorney malpractice, real estate matters and partnerships. Terry has more than 32 years’ experience representing title insurance companies in claims handling, defending title insurance companies in litigation and defending and prosecuting cases for title insurance company insureds. {Curriculum Vitae}

STEPHEN D. MORRISON, CMB 

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Stephen D. Morrison is both an attorney and a certified mortgage banker, Morrison has served for more than twenty five years in various top level positions in the mortgage industry including five years as Chairman of the Board of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS). He has held several top positions with Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, including thirteen years as its General Counsel and helped with the due diligence and acquisition of over $100 Billion in mortgage companies/assets. Morrison is admitted to practice law before the Supreme Court of the United States and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals as well as in Iowa and Minnesota. {Curriculum Vitae}

MICHAEL F. RICHARDS 

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Mr. Richards is a native of California. After graduating with a B.S. degree from the University of California, Davis, in 1975, he began his banking career with Crocker Bank as an Agricultural Loan Officer Trainee in Fresno, California. Rising through the ranks quickly and moving to several branches, he became Branch Manager in Marysville, California, opening a new branch for Crocker Bank.

In 1984 he moved to Billings, Montana as a Vice President and Commercial Loan Officer with First Bank. He was appointed to the Loan Committee, reviewing all loans prior to being presented to the Board of Directors. Recognizing his ability in the Loan Committee, the First Bank Regional Director for the State of Montana requested that he organize a work-out department for First Bank System in Billings, Montana under the name First Bank Systems Credit Services. He was appointed Vice President & Site Manager of the newly formed department hiring four loan officers, two administrative assistants and assigned $25 million in problem credits. After several years and many successes, the loan portfolio had been reduced to $7 million with over $1 million in recoveries. Mr. Richards next accepted a position in Bozeman, Montana with Montana Bank. Montana Bank of Bozeman and Livingston were under regulatory enforcement agreements and Mr. Richards was given the responsibility of cleaning up the loan portfolios which he accomplished over the next two years.

Beginning in 1989, he entered the field of Independent Community Banking, as an Organizer and President of Big Sky Western Bank in Big Sky, Montana. Starting the bank with $1 million in capital, it grew to four locations and $68 million by 1999. In 1999, he helped in the negotiation and merger of the bank into the Glacier Bank System where he stayed on as President and Director until 2001. Over the next several years he helped Mountain West Bank in Bozeman and Heritage Bank establish their new branches in the community. In 2005 he opened Bank of Bozeman and served as President and CEO for the next four years, growing the bank to $80 million. {Curriculum Vitae}

KATHLEEN LEWEK 

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Kathleen Lewek began her banking career in 1965, starting in the Accounting Department for Bank of America in San Francisco. She joined Wells Fargo Bank in 1968, serving in numerous positions in Northern California prior to entering the Officer Training Program in 1974. She became a Banking Services Officer in 1974 and an Assistant Manager in 1976 where her duties included working with the mergers and acquisitions unit. She opened a new branch office in Culver City as Assistant Vice President and Manager in 1979 where she had the distinction of exceeding all growth and profitability projections by 300% and beginning to generate profits on a monthly basis after only five months of operation. Her final position at Wells Fargo Bank was as the Business Development Manager for the Beverly Hills Region in 1981.

She joined Union Bank in 1981, serving as a Vice President in the Correspondent banking unit. In 1988, she left Union Bank to start up a new correspondent banking unit for Imperial Bank. As Senior Vice President and Manager of the Financial Institutions Division, she successfully developed the products, loan policy, procedures, and pricing for the total array of services provided to correspondent banks by the unit while continuing to exceed profitability goals. In February 1994, she joined Alex Sheshunoff Management Services as a Senior Consultant where she was responsible for serving financial institutions in fourteen western states.

Kathleen Lewek has received industry recognition as the Chair of the Correspondent Bank Committee of the California Bankers Association (1991 – 1993), a faculty member at Pacific Coast Banking School (5/92 – 4/96), and a Board member of the Financial Institutions Network (1998 – 2001). She has published articles in the American Banker and trade association newsletters. She has also been quoted in articles in the Los Angeles Business Journal, Sacramento Bee, and Palm Beach Daily Breeze. She attended Santa Rosa Junior College and graduated from Pacific Coast Banking School in 1986.

Based on her belief in a true need for both knowledgeable and relationship oriented consultants, she began Lewek & Associates in October 1994, serving financial institutions of all sizes. {Curriculum Vitae}

FERESHTEH (TAY) FRIED 

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After graduating with a B.S. Degree from Long Beach State University in 1971, Ms. Fried went into the field of banking. During more than 20 years in banking; Tay moved up the ranks of banking operations, serving as the Chief Financial Officer of several institutions, Senior Credit Officer and, ultimately, as the Chief Executive Officer of Coast Bank where she was responsible for all activities of the bank and more than 100 employees. She was responsible for the data processing conversion of a $500 million conglomerate, has consulted for independent banks and been appointed to the advisory board of Long Beach State University School of Business.

In 1993, she founded a specialized computer software firm to automate accounting, servicing and reporting of Small Business Administration and Construction loans as well as ACH payment and OFAC monitoring software. These programs were used by numerous banks in the fourteen Western states. She helped establish a new independent national bank in Southern California in 1999; assisting from concept to completion with stock sales, site location and construction, hiring of personnel, formulation of policies and procedures, data processing systems and regulatory compliance. Subsequently she became the Bank’s Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. {Curriculum Vitae}