Favorite Banker Hall of Fame

The HTMA has had a tradition of recognizing Favorite Bankers on a yearly basis since 1988. We soon realized that many of the same Favorite Bankers were recognized in many different years. It was decided by the association in 1993 we needed to include those bankers that had received the recognition so many times into a Hall of Fame Favorite Banker. Our first Hall of Famer was Debbie Yokum after receiving the Favorite Banker award consecutively from 1988 to 1993. We knew that this Hall of Famer would continue to provide extraordinary service so she was included and recognized in each year’s Favorite Banker ceremony.

It was not until 1997 that we recognized Sharon Mills for receiving the award in 1991, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996 and 1997. From that time on our Hall of Famers were invited to each year’s Favorite Bankers awards ceremony at the Christmas party.

Then in 1998 we recognized Terry Cargill for receiving the award in 1992, 1993, 1995, 1997 and 1998. This was our first Hall of Famer that work as a practitioner as well as banker.

Carol Browder was awarded the Hall of Fame in 2002 after receiving the Favorite Banker award in 1990, 1993, 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2002.  As a career banker you can see she has worked hard over many years.

Chris McFarland became a Hall of Famer in 2004 with six consecutive awards from 1999 to 2004.  That had not occurred since our original honoree, Debbie Yokum, in 1988.

Elisa Mclennon was inducted to the Hall of Fame posthumously in 2005. She was awarded favorite banker consecutively from 1994 to 1997 and again in 2005. Her family was there to accept the award.

Then in 2008 we inducted Lyn Barron for her continued high level of service since she was recognized in 1996, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2008.

Our 8th Hall of Famer, Mike Sultanik, was recognized in 2014 and he is also a Legend member of the HTMA. He worked as a practitioner and banker for many years in Houston. Mike was recognized as a Favorite Banker in 1996, 1998, 2009, 2012, 2013 and 2014.  The HTMA started a new tradition by awarding a green blazer with insignia very much like the Masters. He looked great in green.

Then in 2017, our 9th inductee to the Hall of Fame was Julie Guyton which received the award in 2004, 2011, 2015, 2016 and 2017. In keeping with the jacket tradition above, we presented a shawl with embroidery to her.

Victoria Varner received the award in 2018 for recognition in 2011, 2013, and 2015 to 2018. Again a banker with a long history of service.

Our last honoree is Joe Gomez in 2020. He received Favorite Banker in 2001 to 2004 and then again in 2019 and 2020. We still hear his name floating around for Favorite Banker but Hall of Famers are recognized yearly and not eligible again.

Within this section of the website, we have attached a bio and picture of our Hall of Famers. We will include one for each once we have located everyone. Many will be at TEXPO 2024 in Houston to be recognized.

Favorite Banker Hall of Fame

Lynelle Barron - 1996, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008

I was raised in the great state of North Dakota (City of Mandan) and began my banking career in my senior year of high school. I was chosen to work at The First National Bank of Mandan as part of the ‘On The Job Training Program’. My initial position was an assistant to the President’s Secretary. Upon graduation from high school in 1973, I then worked in Bookkeeping over the summer months and eventually became the Secretary of the Installment Loan Department, Receptionist and Switchboard Operator which was one position at that time.Thus, this first banking opportunity laid the foundation for my entire career in banking. On January 21, 1975 towards the end of the Vietnam era, I enlisted in the US Army for two years and did my basic training and AIT (Advanced Individual Training) at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. From there, I was transferred to Germany to work for a NATO Unit in Sandhofen and worked in the Personnel Office handling Officer Records. I extended my service from 2 to 2-1/2 years and received a Honorable Discharge on July 20, 1977.

Our next journey brought us to Fort Carson in Colorado Springs, Colorado and I went to work for the First National Bank of Colorado Springs in the Credit Loan Department. Which brings me to Houston, Texas in 1982 where I was hired by First City National Bank as a Secretary and then a Services Implementor in the Cash Management Marketing and Sales Department where I worked for a total of 10-1/2 years. In November of 1992, I was hired by Texas Commerce Bank and started out as a secretary in Corporate Cash Management and was eventually promoted to a Client Service Account Manager with Treasury Services whereby I provided customer service to several oil and gas companies for 20 years having the same client contacts during this tenure. My last seven years now under JPMorgan Chase Bank was in Business Banking Sales Strategy Support whereby we reviewed clients for Cross-Line of Business transfers. All in all, my banking career spanned out over 45 years. On June 1st, 2021, I decided to kick back and retire, closing this chapter and beginning a new relaxing one.

Carol Browder - 1990, 1993, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002

Carol Browder

Director, Senior Treasury Officer

Carol Browder is a Senior Treasury Officer based in the Houston Global Commercial Banking office in Houston. In this role, Carol works closely with prospects and clients to create customized liquidity and treasury structures. Clients are diverse and range from locally owned companies to large publicly traded or sponsor owned companies.

Carol has worked in banking since 1980 and joined Bank of America in 1995. She received her BBA from the University of Texas and started her career in credit prior to transitioning to treasury sales in 1988.

Carol has been recognized by the local Houston Treasury Management Association as a Hall of Fame Favorite Banker after having won the annual favorite banker award for six years. She is active in the local community and is a Life-Time Committee Member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

Carol enjoys spending time with friends and family and loves to travel.

Terry Cargill - 1992, 1993, 1995, 1997, 1998

Terry P. Cargill

After 32 years in banking, Terry retired from JPMorgan Chase as a Managing Director, moving into the nonprofit sector as a leader at WaterStone, a Christian Foundation, where he served for over six years. Although mostly retired, Terry is now an Executive Coach and loving the role!

Most of Terry’s career has been centered in Corporate/Commercial Banking and Treasury Management where he has held a number of leadership roles. As a Certified Treasury Professional, Terry has spoken at numerous conferences on various treasury management topics and has been honored as a “Hall of Fame Banker” by the Houston Treasury Management Association.

Terry and his wife of 39 years, Barbara, graduates of Baylor University, have three adult sons, a daughter-in-law and precious granddaughter. They reside in The Woodlands area and are active in their church and community where they serve on a number of nonprofit boards.

Jose Gomez - 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2019, 2020

Jose Gomez, CTP

Jose Gomez is a Treasury Management Consultant at Wells Fargo Bank NA. He has been in treasury management since 1982 and has worked for several major global financial institutions. Jose has spent his entire career in Treasury Management primarily supporting the energy industry. Jose has been a supporter of the HTMA and TEXPO for decades.

Jose earned his BBA in Marketing from Pace University in New York in 1982. He was a permanent CCM and evolved to the CTP certification when it was created.

Julie Guyton - 2004, 2011, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017

Julie Guyton

As Senior Vice President at Susser Bank, Julie Guyton has over 40 years of financial experience. Currently, she is responsible for assisting companies with their treasury and liquidity needs and for strategic planning related to the bank’s funding and deposit platforms. She works closely with Treasury Management, Commercial Lending, and other key areas of the bank, partnering to help provide coverage of a client’s liquidity needs.

Prior to joining Susser Bank, she worked at Texas Capital Bank for three years, where she assisted companies with investing their excess cash and was involved with the strategic planning related to the bank’s corporate liquidity and investment platform. She also spent fifteen years at Amegy Bank and twenty years at JPMorgan Chase, where she managed a Corporate Investments team at each bank.

Ms. Guyton is a six-time recipient of the Houston Treasury Management Association (HTMA) Favorite Banker award. In addition, she was inducted into the HTMA Hall of Fame in December 2017. This award is voted on and chosen by HTMA members and is awarded to bankers who demonstrate outstanding customer service and dedication to treasury professionals across companies in Houston.

Prior work experience includes both sales and management responsibilities at Amegy Bank (2002 to 2017) and JPMorgan Chase (1984-2002). She holds the Series 7, 24, 27, 52, 53 and 63 licenses and has a BBA in Finance from The University of Texas at Austin.

She resides in Houston with her husband, and they have two grown children.

Chris McFarland - 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004

Chris McFarland

Managing Director | Treasury Manager
Global Commercial Bank | Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Chris McFarland has been a Managing Director in Global Payment Solutions at Bank of America where he manages a sales team responsible for Commercial Banking clients in Texas, Louisiana, Colorado and Missouri since 2018. After receiving his degree in Finance from the University of Houston in 1987 he began his career in Cash Management at Brown & Root Engineering and Construction, he moved to First City Bank of Texas in 1989 where he held a number of positions in Product Management. Chris returned to Corporate Cash Management in 1991 at Anadarko Petroleum Corporation where he earned the designation of Permanently Certified Cash Manager, Certified Treasury Professional and other industry awards from AFP for his leadership in publications for the HTMA. Following the merger of Bank One and First Chicago NBD he joined the newly formed organization in 1999 as First Vice President in Treasury Sales covering clients in the Southwest and eventually leading the Energy and Mexico Large Corporate Sales Team. In 2004 Chris took the role of Industry Sales Head of Technology, Pharma and Chemicals at JPMorgan Chase where he ultimately held positions in Commercial Card, Transportation, Aerospace Defense and Natural Resources covering Fortune 500 Companies. During his first 6 years in banking Chris was fortunate to be recognized as Favorite Banker for the Houston Treasury Management Association in 1999-2003 and ultimately Hall of Fame Banker in 2004. Chris had a number of great mentors during his time in the industry including Tom Lockwood and Randy Tonnesen and his approach to Treasury client relationships was greatly influenced by other Hall of Fame Bankers Terry Cargill, Debbie Yokum and Joe Gomez.

Elisa McLennan - 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2005

Elisa McLennan

Elisa McLennan was a Treasury Management Officer at Texas Commerce Bank / J.P. Morgan Chase who was a “Favorite Banker” to her HTMA clients and her colleagues at the bank as well.

The consummate treasury professional, Elisa knew her product, knew how the bank worked and was truly “client obsessed”.   Elisa started with the bank as an associate; she knew the details and knew that the details matter. She developed personal relationships with her clients that most treasury professionals only dream about.

She cared deeply about her clients, both as individuals and as clients.   She was perpetually “cheerful” and always “dressed” for the meeting, the occasion, the event.   Elisa was an early believer in the “the higher the heel, the better you feel”!

Nancy McDonnell recounts being with Elisa on a calling trip in Atlanta when she got the news about her breast cancer – she wanted Nancy to know that it would not affect her clients or her work.  Elisa was just that kind of “others first” person that truly represented what it means to earn the HTMA’s  “Favorite Banker” honor.

It goes without saying – Gone too soon.

Sharon Mills - 1991, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997

Bio coming soon. 

Mike Sultanik - 1996, 1998, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2014

Mike Sultanik

Before retiring, Mike Sultanik served as a Senior Vice President and Relationship Manager for the Commercial Banking Department of the Bank of Texas between October 2010 and December 2016. In this capacity, Mike was responsible for developing and retaining new business relationships for both credit and non-credit customers in the Houston, Texas market place.

Before joining Bank of Texas, Mike was a Vice President and Relationship Manager for the Commercial Lending Department at Wells Fargo in downtown Houston from December 2000 to October 2010. Prior to that, Mike served as Vice President and Treasury Management Sales officer at Wells Fargo from November 1996 to December 2000.

Wells Fargo hired Mike in November 1996 from his position as the Director of Treasury Operations at National Convenience Stores, a billion dollar publicly traded retail chain, which was later acquired by Diamond Shamrock. Mike had responsibilities for running the company’s treasury operations from November 1986 through November 1996. Previously, Mike worked as a Senior Financial Analyst at Tenneco Inc., and held several other positions in the Tenneco organization between March 1977 and November 1986.

During his business career, Mike became a Certified Treasury Professional (CTP) and a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Before starting his business career, Mike attended the University of Texas at Austin where he earned an MBA degree in Accounting and Finance.

In addition to attending the first TEXPO in 1983, Mike was involved in a number of treasury management community service and business activities including those listed below.

 

  • Won 1st Place in the national Treasury Management Association’s (AFP) annual Innovations in Treasury
    Management program – 1991
  • President of the Houston Treasury Management Association (HTMA) – 1994
  • Chairman of the HTMA’s first Board of Directors – 1994
  • Founding member of the Alliance of Texas Treasury Associations (ATTA) – 1994
  • Held various officer and committee positions in HTMA – 1991 – 1995
  • Served on the national TMA’s CCM Test Committee – 1992 – 1994
  • Provided numerous presentations at HTMA and TEXPO events – 1991 – 2014
  • Inducted into the HTMA’s Favorite Banker Hall of Fame – 2015
  • Committee member for HTMA’s Space City and TEXPO committees – 2018 – 2019
  • Instructor in the CCM/CTP Review course for Rice University in Houston, Texas – 2006 – 2016
Victoria Varner - 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

Victoria A. Varner, CTP, CPCP

Executive Director, Division Sales Manager for Energy & Power and Affiliate & Internals Wells Fargo & Company

Victoria Varner is an executive director and division sales manager for the Energy & Power and the Affiliates & Internals Global Treasury Management groups at Wells Fargo. Based in Houston, she leads a team of treasury consultants serving energy, utilities, and renewable energy, as well as affiliates and internal clients across the United States.

Victoria began her international banking career in her home country, Argentina, with ABN AMRO Bank, where she held positions in marketing, capital markets, and global transaction services. In 1993, she was transferred to ABN AMRO’s headquarters in The Netherlands where she worked in corporate finance, specializing in Latin America and emerging markets.

In 1996, she returned to Argentina to manage the marketing and communications team in charge of the retail expansion of the bank in South America. She transferred to ABN AMRO Houston in 1999, as an international cash management consultant. More recently, she held several cash management roles at JPMorgan Chase and joined Wells Fargo in 2006 as a treasury management consultant for the Energy & Power division, the group that she has managed since 2017.

Victoria earned her bachelor and master’s degrees in international relations from the Universidad de Belgrano in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She is a Certified Treasury Professional (CTP) and a Certified Purchasing Card Professional (CPCP). As a passionate traveler and explorer of different cultures, she’s fluent in Spanish, English, Dutch, and French, and also speaks Portuguese and Italian.

Victoria serves on the board of directors of Child Advocates Inc., an organization devoted to end the cycle of child abuse and neglect, where she is also a court- appointed advocate. She’s a member of the Women’s Energy Network, the National Association of Corporate Directors and the Executive Women’s Golf Association.

Debbie Yokum - 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993

Debbie Yokum

Worked at First City National Bank/Texas Commerce Bank from 1983 to 1996 in treasury management sales.

In 1996 moved to Dallas, TX and worked for Bank of America also in treasury management sales. Retired from banking in 1998 and began volunteering at my daughter’s school.

Moved to Baltimore, MD in 2000 where I continued as a volunteer at my daughter’s schools and helped with extra-curricular activities.

In 2009, I went from a volunteer to a full-time position as an Administrative Assistant at Notre Dame Preparatory School, an all-girl independent Catholic school. I have been working at Notre Dame for 14 years primarily in the Advancement/Development department.

Favorite Banker Winners By Year

2020

Jose Gomez - DNBAleks Heckner - Amegy BankGary Junek - Texas Capital BankSeth Laroche - Texas Capital Bank
Nathalie Martinez - Amerant BankIgnacio Pujol - Allegiance BankKayla Vaughn - PNCMarc Weimer - Bank of America
Alice Worthington - Bank of Texas

2019

Jose Gomez - DNBKatrina King - Cadence Bank

2018

Victoria Varner - Wells Fargo

2017

Amy Gunn - Wells FargoJulie Guyton - Amegy BankVictoria Varner - Wells Fargo

2016

Sushma Charania - JP Morgan ChaseJulie Guyton - Amegy BankWendy Hilbert - JP Morgan ChaseVictoria Varner - Wells Fargo

2015

Julie Guyton - Amegy BankMary Murray - Amegy BankManish Patel - Bank of AmericaVictoria Varner - Wells Fargo
Shane Wibel - Capital One

2014

Nanette Crocker - BBVAPeter Geronimo - CitibankJulie Guyton - Amegy BankSherry Jong - Citibank
William "Bill" Marshall - Bank of NYCasey Pazoki - Bank of AmericaChelsea Reeder - Amegy BankMike Sultanik - Bank of Texas

2013

Amy Gunn - Wells FargoChristine Kohut - Amegy BankMike Sultanik - Bank of TexasSheila Turner - Bank of America
Victoria Varner - Wells Fargo

2012

Guinn Brim - Amegy BankJennifer Gianeli - Wells FargoMary McGuire - JP Morgan ChaseMike Sultanik - Bank of Texas
Phil Thompson - Zions Bank

2011

Jessica Carlton-Riviere - CitibankPatty Chavez - Wells FargoJulie Guyton - Amegy BankMark Jones - JP Morgan Chase
Victoria Varner - Wells FargoGlenn Weatherly - JP Morgan Chase

2010

Ted Brooke - BNY MellonSarah Jozaitis - JP Morgan ChaseIra Malmgren - Zions Bank

2009

Katrina King - Amegy BankJan Schade - BNY MellonMike Sultanik - Wells FargoTanya Wright - Standard Chartered

2008

Lynelle Barron - JP Morgan ChaseTed Brooke - BNY MellonJeff Recker - BNY Mellon

2007

Steve Deininger - Bank of AmericaLance Kawaguchi - CitigroupIra Malmgren - Zions BankJeff Recker - BNY Mellon

2006

Lynelle Barron - JP Morgan ChaseTimothy Kane - CitiBankGreg Moore - MellonDesiree O'Neil - JP Morgan Chase
Jan Schade - MellonJason Wallace - Bank of America

2005

Lynelle Barron - JP Morgan ChaseBrad Cink - Bank of AmericaKatrina King - Amegy BankIra Malmgren - Zions Bank
Elisa McLennan - Texas CommerceJay Singh - JP Morgan ChaseScott Vines - Wells Fargo

2004

Lynelle Barron - JP Morgan ChaseBlake Bihm - Amegy BankDave Cummings - CitigroupJose Gomez - BankOne
Julie Guyton - Amegy BankChris McFarland - BankOneMichelle Reeck - Bank of AmericaScott Vines - Wells Fargo

2003

Jose Gomez - BankOneMary Jo Huelsman - CitibankPaul Knudson - JP Morgan ChaseChris McFarland - BankOne
Greg Moore - MellonAudrey Sims - WachoviaDonna Turi - WachoviaScott Vines - Wells Fargo

2002

Carol Browder - Bank of AmericaMary Jo Huelsman - CitibankChris McFarland - BankOneMark Olson - JP Morgan Chase
David Vining - JP Morgan Chase

2001

Kevin Costello - CitibankDiane Decker - SW Bank of TexasBecky Fuller - JP Morgan ChaseJose Gomez - BankOne
Debbie Innes - SW Bank of TexasChris McFarland - BankOneCarol Polasky - Wells Fargo

2000

Carol Browder - Bank of AmericaMona Covington - BankOneDiane Decker - SW Bank of TexasJose Gomez - BankOne
Chris McFarland - BankOneElisa McLennan - Chase BankMarc Olson - Chase BankAndrea Summers - CitiBank

1999

Lynelle Barron - JP Morgan ChaseCarol Browder - Bank of America Mary Ellen Coffey - Chase, TXLinda Earls - Bank of America
Lisa Jarrell - Wells FargoChris McFarland - BankOne Jennifer Novak - Chase, TXRobert Ragaishis - Toronto Dominion

1998

Carol Browder - NationsBankTerry Cargill - First ChicagoReuben Ezra - Chase BankSoha Haque - NationsBank
Bob Hern - First ChicagoJennifer Novak - Chase TXLisa Sicar - Chase TXMike Sultanik - Wells Fargo

1997

Terry Cargill - First ChicagoMona Covington - First ChicagoSoha Haque - NaitonsBankElisa McLennan - Chase TX
Sharon Mills - NationsBankJennifer Novak - Chase TXRebecca Perlmutter - CitibankMarci Primus - Citibank

1996

Lynelle Barron - Texas CommerceSissy Boyer - Texas CommercePete Malinowski - Bank of BostonElisa McLennan - Texas Commerce
Sharon Mills - NationsBankMike Sultanik - Wells Fargo

1995

Sissy Boyer - Texas CommerceTerry Cargill - First ChicagoPete Malinowski - Bank of BostonElisa McLennan - Texas Commerce
Sharon Mills - NationsBankLee Scott - Texas CommerceJoe Stark - Chase Manhattan

1994

Nan Dockal - CitibankElisa McLennan - Texas CommerceSharon Mills - NationsBankJennifer Novak - Texas Commerce
Dwayne Reeves - First ChicagoLee Scott - Texas CommerceSissy Venker - Texas Commerce

1993

Carol Browder - First InterstateTerry Cargill - First ChicagoSoha Haque - NationsBankBrenda Medlyn - Texas Commerce
Jennifer Novak - Texas CommerceLee Scott - Texas CommerceDebbie Yokum - NationsBank

1992

Terry Cargill - First ChicagoSharon Mills - Texas CommerceSissy Venker - Texas CommerceDebbie Yokum - New First City

1991

Joni Freeman - BankOneRick Griffin - Continental Bk.Brenda Medlyn - Texas CommerceSharon Mills - Texas Commerce
Terry Snellings - First WachoviaSissy Venker - Texas CommerceSusan Wells - NCNB - HoustonDebbie Yokum - First City

1990

Carol Browder - First InterstateSusan Campbell - First CityJoni Freeman - BankOneShirley Kwan - Texas Commerce
Dan Oldani - First InterstateTrish Russell - BankOneJoanne Scheier - MellonKay Thomas - Bankers Trust
Debbie Yokum - First City

1989

Susan Campbell - First CityCindy Cooley - BankOneBill Hurt - Texas CommerceSarah Miller - NCNB - Houston
Trish Russell - BankOneSharon Sokol - First InterstateDebbie Yokum - First City

1988

Paul Borne - First CitySusan Campbell - First CityCindy Cooley - M BankRenee Phillips - First Interstate
Trish Russell - M BankCraig Staples - Texas CommerceDebbie Yokum - First City