CIVIC Financial Services recently hired Merced Cohen as the company’s director of operations.

Prior to joining CIVIC, Cohen spent 10 years with Skyline Financial Corp. as executive vice president of operations. She follows former Skyline president of retail lending, William Tessar, to CIVIC. Tessar was recently named president and CEO of the company.

During her tenure with Skyline, Cohen reduced lending operations complexity by eliminating redundancies and implementing technology-focused solutions, a key to the company’s growth from $40 million per month to nearly $4 billion annually.

“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Merced for more than a decade, and her creative approach to operations, inspirational leadership style and relentless pursuit for simplicity makes her a vital part of the business,” Tessar said of Cohen, who was nicknamed “the heartbeat” of Skyline for implementing daily communications that connected all company employees to the top of the organization.

Tessar added that Cohen’s sales experience provides a valuable perspective that few operations leaders share.

“This enhances her ability to consistently cut through the noise of lending operations to arrive at a simpler solution. These things, coupled with her ability to develop talent, make her the best in the industry. I can’t imagine anyone else scaling CIVIC’s operations,” he said.

Since joining CIVIC in March, Cohen has had a few weeks to reflect on her new work environment.

“The combination of the vast resources created by Wedgewood’s vertically-integrated fix and flip business and HMC’s NPL acquisition expertise alongside CIVIC’s access to low-cost capital make it the biggest opportunity I’ve seen in my 30+ years of lending. Beyond that, there’s the people, the amazing people!

“The unique blend of seasoned industry experts with younger professionals new to the industry helps us approach the business with a fresh perspective. All of this creates a culture and environment to ‘Think Outside the Bank’, develop future leaders, and lay the foundation for CIVIC to disrupt the private equity space,” she added.

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