Board of Directors

Paul D. Tobias

Chairman & CEO, Mackinac Financial Corporation
Chairman, mBank
Mr. Tobias has served as a Director since 2004.  He has nearly 30 years of experience in the financial services and banking industries. He was appointed as Chairman of mBank and Chairman & CEO of Mackinac Financial Corporation in December, 2004 after structuring and leading the successful $30 million recapitalization of the company when it was known as North Country Bank and Trust.  He also served as Chief Executive Officer of mBank from July 2005 until November 2006. Previously, Tobias was Chairman & CEO of Mackinac Holdings, Inc. and a Managing Member of Mackinac Partners, LLC, a financial and operational advisory company serving global and middle market companies. He has also served as CEO and COO of Munder Capital Management, SVP and EVP of Comerica Incorporated where he was the head of Mergers and Acquisitions’ and as an Investment Banker at McDonald & Company. He is a graduate of Albion College and earned a MBA from the University of Michigan.

Walter J. Aspatore

Lead Director, Mackinac Financial Corporation
Chairman Emeritus, Amherst Partners 
Mr. Aspatore has served as a Director since 2004. He is Co-Founder and Chairman Emeritus at Amherst Partners, a firm specializing in advising companies on mergers & acquisitions, debt financing, business valuations and turnarounds. He has also served as President of Cross & Trecker Corporation, President and CEO of The Warner & Swasey Company and Vice President, Group Executive and CFO of Bendix Corporation Industrial Tools Group. Prior to these roles, Aspatore was Vice President/Finance at TRW Corporation (Industrial Energy Sector) and Vice Chair and President of Onset BIDCO. Aspartore sits on several Boards of Directors. He is a graduate of University of Wisconsin at Whitewater. 

Dennis B. Bittner

Owner & President, Bittner Engineering, Inc.
Mr. Bittner has served as a Director since 2004. He has been President and CEO of Bittner Engineering for 25 years, a professional services company providing planning, development and consultation related services on civil, environmental and architectural engineering projects. Previously Bittner served as an engineer with the State of Michigan and Federal Agencies. He has a BS and MS from Michigan State University and completed graduate studies in forest hydrology.

Joseph D. Garea

Managing Partner, Hancock Securities
Mr. Garea has served as a Director since 2007. Prior to co-founding Manchester Partners (a predecessor firm to Hancock Securities) in 1997, he served as President of Enterprise Capital Management, a venture capital firm, and was Chief Financial Officer of Enterbank Holdings, the holding company for Enterprise Bank. From 1987 to 1994, Garea served as Senior Vice President and Chief Lending Officer of United Postal Savings. He began his career with KPMG in 1977. His experience includes equity formation and investment, management of mergers and acquisitions & investment portfolios, sales and marketing activities, retail and commercial lending, management of troubled assets, asset recovery and finance activities for public and commercial companies. He has a degree in Business Administration from Saint Louis University and is a Certified Public Accountant. He holds Series 7, 24, 63, and 65 licenses from FINRA.

Kelly W. George

President, Mackinac Financial Corporation
President & Chief Executive Officer, mBank
Mr. George has served as a Director since 2006.  He has over 20 years of experience in the banking industry. He joined mBank in 2003 as EVP/Chief Lending Officer to lead regulatory, credit and lending administration turnaround of the previously known North Country Bank and Trust. After the successful rehabilitation of the bank, he was then promoted to President & CEO of mBank and President of Mackinac Financial Corporation in 2006. Prior to mBank, he was SVP/Chief Lending Officer at the Commercial and Savings Bank in Millersburg Ohio, also leading the credit turnaround of a regulatory challenged bank. Mr. George spent several years as a Safety and Soundness Examiner-in-Charge at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland responsible for the oversight of FRB regulated institutions with assets between $100 million and $5 billion. He began his career in various retail banking, credit, and commercial lending roles at Bank One and National City Bank in Cleveland, Ohio. Mr. George is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a BS in Economics and Finance.

Robert Edward Mahaney II

Founder, Veridea Group, LLC
Mr. Mahaney has served as a Director since 2008. He is the founder and President of The Veridea Group, LLC, a commercial real estate development, consulting and management company. He also has interests in the hospitality industry. Prior to Veridea, Mahaney was a partner in several financial services and real estate ventures, and his career has included corporate banking, M&A funding, and public accounting experience. He has a BA from Albion College and a Master’s degree in International Finance from Thunderbird School of Global Management.  His professional credentials include CPA and CFP licenses.

Robert H. Orley

Principal, Real Estate Investment Group, Inc.
Mr. Orley has been a Director of the company since 2004. He is a private equity investor with more than 30 years of experience financing businesses across a variety of industries including manufacturing, distribution, financial services, consumer goods and real estate. He co-founded REI Investment Group and O2 Investment Partners. He has served as Chairman and CEO of both RheTech and New Horizons Northeast and sits on several Boards of Directors. Orley received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan, his Juris Doctor from Michigan State College of Law and a LLM in Taxation from Boston University School of Law.

Randolph C. Paschke

Director, External Relations and Community Engagement, Wayne State University
Mr. Paschke has served as a Director since 2004. He is currently the Director of External Relations and Community Engagement in the School of Business Administration at Wayne State University. During his tenure at Wayne State University, he served as Chair or the Accounting Department in the Business School for ten years. Prior to joining Wayne State, Paschke spent 32 years at the public accounting firm Arthur Andersen LLP (20 as a partner). While at Arthur Andersen he was in charge of the firm’s Michigan tax practice, Great Lakes region international tax practice and U.S. International tax and trade practice groups. He has lectured, researched, written and been published on many areas of taxation. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan and a CPA.

Lewis Brooks Patterson

County Executive, Oakland County, Michigan
Mr. Patterson has served as Director since 2007. He has been the County Executive of Oakland County for nearly 20 years, leading economic development, financial management and cultural initiatives for the county. As the chief elected official in one of America’s most affluent and progressive counties, he organized the creation of Automation Alley, Medical Main Street and a three-year budget cycle for the county. Previously, he served as Oakland County Prosecutor. Patterson has won numerous leadership awards and holds undergraduate and Juris Doctor degrees from the University of Detroit.

David R. Steinhardt

Manager, Steinhardt Capital Investors
Mr. Steinhardt has served as a Director since 2012. He is a 20 year veteran of the investment management industry. He is Co-Founder and Board Member of KCPS & Company and Managing Partner and Portfolio Manager of Wooster Capital Management. Steinhardt has served as Managing Director and Head of Research at Centurion Investment Group and as an analyst and assistant portfolio manager at Spears, Benzak, Salomon and Farrell. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania. 




Note: The membership composition of the Mackinac Financial Corporation and mBank Boards of Directors are the same but they operate under separate Charters.