Welcome Chelsie Calara to Liberty Bank!
“Coming from a small island you appreciate all the small things and value the relationships you make within the community. I am excited to grow with Liberty Bank and the community. ”
Chelsie Calara brings well-rounded banking experience to her role as Professional Banker in the Poulsbo branch, having previously worked as a loan officer, new accounts officer and teller in banking in Guam.
In this role, Chelsie will work as a universal banker, completing important customer-facing work. Her knowledge of the Filipino languages Tagalog and Waray allow her to serve a diverse community locally.
Chelsie moved to Kitsap County in 2022 after attending the University of Guam and working in banking for five years. She looks forward to serving all of your banking needs.
Welcome Camie Tat to Liberty Bank
VP & Credit Administrator
“I love the ability to help people and businesses achieve their goals by structuring and using credit the best ways possible. I hope to help Liberty Bank build long-term prosperous relationships within the community with open communication, collaboration, transparency, and sound financial advice.”
Camie Tat joins Liberty Bank as an experienced commercial credit analyst and underwriter for business enterprises and commercial banks. In her 20 years in the financial services industry, Camie has successfully managed client portfolios, conducted financial analysis and credit adjudication.
As VP and Credit Administrator at Liberty Bank’s Bellevue office, Camie will assist the Chief Credit Officer in maintaining the integrity of Liberty Bank’s credit risk and quality standards and help streamline and oversee the credit process.
“I especially enjoy seeing our customers achieve growth. I enjoy helping them understand the credit process, assess their risk, and making informed financial decisions based on where they are and where they want to be in the short, medium and long-term future.”.
Camie takes on this position after working as a treasurer and risk analyst for Boeing Capital Corp., as a commercial lending underwriter/portfolio manager at HomeStreet Bank in Seattle, and commercial credit adjudicator/analyst at RBC Financial Group in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
A resident of Seattle, Camie earned her Advanced Bachelor of Arts degree in Labor and Workplace Studies and a minor in business from University of Manitoba, Winnipeg. She served on the board of the Risk Management Assoc. in Calgary, Canada, and can often be found running along Puget Sound or out in nature on the trails training for another half or full marathon race.
2022 Leadership Kitsap Graduate, Galina Georgieva
Galina Georgieva, Liberty Bank VP and Relationship Manager, completes Leadership Kitsap program with opening of Eleanor’s Inn for domestic violence victims.
Poulsbo, Wash. (June 10, 2022): Liberty Bank extends its congratulations to Vice President and Relationship Manager Galina Georgieva for graduating as part of Leadership Kitsap’s 2022 class. Georgieva and her team completed a project to support domestic violence survivors in Kitsap County.
“We want to congratulate Galina and the entire Leadership Kitsap Class of 2022 on their efforts this year to give back to and strengthen our community,” said Rhonda Morris, Senior Vice President and Chief Risk Officer. “We are very proud of Galina and the hard work she has put into this program and her team’s project.”
Georgieva and her team created “Eleanor’s Inn,” a new safe space for local domestic violence victims and their children to escape to for 24 to 48 hours while awaiting more long-term placement. It also serves sexual assault victims.
“I was excited about Leadership Kitsap because I’ve always worked in community banks and I really like the community involvement component, volunteering, and giving back to the community,” Georgieva said. “I was also new to Kitsap County, moving here in November 2020. To me, it was a really great way to get to know the community faster and get involved and connect with other leaders in the area. I’ve gone through my education, getting a BA, and I’ve taken professional development classes and programs. This by far is my most favorite one.”
Team members devoted their time and energy to creating Eleanor’s Inn after hearing from the Poulsbo Parks & Recreation and the Poulsbo Police Department that they were seeking an additional safe and calming place in the community for women who faced domestic violence and sexual assault. As the team worked on the project, they kept in mind Eleanor, a local woman who survived 18 years of domestic violence before devoting her life to help other survivors. She often met with domestic violence survivors in her bedroom or her kitchen and offered comfort and good advice. Eleanor’s Inn offers a space that will allow survivors to leave their situation, find comfort, connect with resources, and be able to go on and have a completely different life.
Eleanor’s Inn was designed with special attention on how to help the healing process. The team consulted with behavioral health specialists to choose calming and healing colors and purchased rocking chairs because the soothing rocking motion relieves stress. The team stocked the shelves with books specifically recommended for healing. Every aspect of Eleanor’s Inn was carefully designed to enhance calmness and improve recovery.
The team secured funds, redesigned the space, painted, decorated, and stocked the room, which will benefit the community and allow victims to leave their situation, find comfort, and connect with resources to move forward with their lives. Other team members along with Poulsbo Parks & Recreation and the Poulsbo Police Department were community partners. The project was sponsored by Poulsbo Rotary DV Committee, Liberty Bank, and Peninsula Paint.
Georgieva also appreciated learning more about her community through Leadership Kitsap’s Positive Leadership curriculum designed to help identify, expand, and enhance leadership capacities, in addition to participating in the program’s Challenge Days. One day each month, community leaders exposed the Leadership Kitsap participants to what is happening with local government, economics, education, healthy communities, state government, public safety, arts & recreation, and environment & planning.
Matthew Ogard Joins Liberty Bank
A growing community bank should include bankers who grew up in the community. Accountant Matthew Ogard has lived in Poulsbo since the third grade.
But Matthew has ideas that extend far beyond Poulsbo — like how to lower the price of gas to a $1.50 a gallon; And a plan for restoring rail lines and increasing rail transportation. He even saved the Edmonds/Kingston ferry from a major capacity cut by showing them how to rearrange the boats.
Liberty Bank is just the place for visionaries like Matthew who are quick to spot opportunities for improvement.
“The benefits here are outstanding. I am able to grow in my career as we are in process of growing the bank.”
Sheila Dennison Promoted to Assistant Branch Manager
“What I like most about Liberty Bank is my fellow employees and building relationships with my clients.”
The ability to multi-task in high-stress situations, provide structured guidance, diffuse escalating conflict, and the ability to smoothly navigate through the latest technology comes from years of managerial experience. It also comes from years of successfully raising children!
As the new Assistant Branch Manager at Liberty Bank’s Poulsbo branch, Sheila means business. And she has experienced many aspects of it — from the trenches of customer service to running a federal credit union as assistant branch manager. Friends describe Sheila as straight forward, dependable, reliable, trustworthy, and loyal.
Her fluency in all aspects of business finances, coupled with her ability to listen, make Sheila a recipe for your success.
A resident of Silverdale and a graduate of Skagit Valley College, Sheila has focused on customer service locally for more than 20 years. When not serving Liberty Bank customers, she spends her time cooking, enjoying time with her family and traveling to Disneyland. She is a long-time community volunteer, participating in local fundraisers and donating her time and talents to her children’s school.
WBA Retail Branch Manager Development Program Graduate-Kelly Garcia
Liberty Bank would like to recognize and congratulate Kelly Garcia, VP & Branch Manager of the Poulsbo Office for her recent graduation of the WBA Retail Branch Manager Development Program.
“We are so proud of Kelly for her continued dedication to our clients and LB Team. Completing the Retail Branch Manager Development program will strengthen her leadership skills and deepen her client relationships.” Rhonda Morris, SVP & Chief Risk Officer
Matt Ravagni Joins Liberty Bank
Loan Operations Specialist – Joined September 2021
“The work environment here is fantastic! I treasure coming into work every day. My job is tremendously rewarding.”
With over 7 years of banking experience, Matt has worn just about every hat in the industry; Teller, Senior Personal Banker, Customer Service Representative and Loan Originator. Before that he wore the hat of an Infantryman as a Specialist in the U.S. Army for 4 years. After which time he pursued his bachelor’s degree in Finance and Business Administration. Matt was born in Boston, MA & has also lived in Southwest FL. Though he is not a native of Washington he feels like part of the community here. He & his wife have planted roots on the Puget Sound where they intend to spend their life.
His experience from the military taught him the value of teamwork, leadership and strategic problem solving. Whatever your needs, Matt is an encyclopedia of knowledge when it comes to regulations, policy, compliance and how to stay within the lines. His people skills are a product of having worked with clients and top-level administrators in all aspects of the banking industry.
It’s not all business, however. Matt also enjoys fishing, reading & geology.
Now that PPP has ended, what’s next?
We are so grateful to you – our community and our customers – for trusting Liberty Bank to serve you during the time that the federal government offered Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. We were privileged to make 598 loans valued at just under $75 million. Thank you for trusting us during such challenging and uncertain times.
Now that the program has ended and we look toward emerging from the restrictions imposed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, we want to continue to serve you for all of your banking needs.
We are seeing many businesses once again focus on their core businesses, to consider investing in capital improvements, infrastructure, and growth.
Perhaps your transportation fleet could use a refresh. Maybe it’s time to replenish inventory. Now may be the time to find additional capital to grow and expand your facility, buy new equipment or machinery. Others might be thinking about adding a new business line or additional market to the mix. Or, perhaps there is an opportunity to buy a new building or invest in real estate.
Whatever your needs are, we are here for you. You can always talk to one of our loan experts and we can help walk you through the process.
We are also available to help you with your personal banking needs, whether that is a home mortgage or home equity line of credit.
Our lobby once again is open for business. So, please stop by or give us a call. We look forward to continuing to connect with you in person and explore whatever banking requirements you have.
Once again, thank you – legacy customers and those who found us for the first time – for trusting us to help you weather such difficult times. Thank you for reaching out, leaning on us, and letting us serve you. Remember, we are here through bad times and good times. We look forward to continuing to work with you now and into the future.
Washington Long-Term Care Act
UPDATE: Governor Inslee Signs Amendments to WA Cares
You may have heard, the state passed, and Governor Inslee signed, updated regulations for the WA Cares LTC program
Here is what the changes include:
- This bill delays the WA Cares tax until 7/1/2023. Any benefit payment under the program is also delayed, to 7/1/2026.
- This bill also allows those nearing retirement to receive partial benefits, even if not fully vested (10% of the maximum benefit for each year paid in).
- And it authorizes employers to refund any collected tax in the first quarter of 2022 back to their employees (you must refund within 120 days).
It expands those eligible to opt out of the WA Cares program.
- This bill expands those eligible to opt out of the WA Cares program.
- This will allow certain disabled veterans as well as spouses of active-duty military to apply to opt out.
- Plus, those who reside outside Washington and those holding a temporary work visa will be able to opt out.
The Washington state legislature passed the Long-Term Care Trust Act and Gov. Jay Inslee recently signed it into law, creating the “Washington Cares Fund.” The purpose of the new law, fund, and worker-funded tax is to help ensure the state’s aging population will have access to long-term care (LTC) services like lengthy hospital stays, assisted living, rehab facilities, and skilled nursing care if and when they need such services in the future.
If the idea of paying an additional, mandatory 0.58%, employee-funded payroll tax ($5.80 for every $1,000 of earnings) doesn’t sound appealing, there is good news. The WA Cares Fund includes provisions allowing workers to opt-out. To do so, you will need to purchase your own individual long-term care insurance policy no later than Oct. 31, 2021. That policy can be a standalone long-term care policy, or a life insurance policy or annuity with a long-term care rider. Regardless of its form, a private policy must provide for equal or better benefits than those available through the WA Cares Fund.
Liberty Bank Sponsorship
We’re proud to be a sponsor of Bellevue Rotary Foundation’s “Around the World” fundraiser this Year! For information, visit their website: https://bellevuerotary.net/bulletin-content/around-the-world-fundraiser/