City National Bank Expands Its Residential Lending Services


Five veteran bankers added to augment residential lending team

City National Bank (CNB), the premier commercial and private bank in Florida, announced that it is expanding its residential mortgage team with plans to open offices throughout the state.

The bank has hired five mortgage veterans to augment the current team, including Howard Levine, CNB’s new Executive Vice President and Residential Lending Executive, who will lead CNB’s residential division.

City National Bank has opened its first residential loan production office in Sarasota, with plans to open additional offices in Tampa, Naples and Orlando.

“This is part of our natural expansion and continuation of our plan to offer our value proposition based on an exceptional client experience throughout the state,” CNB President and CEO Jorge Gonzalez said. “We are confident that this new group of accomplished banking professionals will catapult City National Bank’s presence in residential lending throughout Florida.”

Levine has national experience in residential lending and treasury management. Prior to leading Sabadell United Bank’s residential division for five years, he served as Senior Vice President, Managing Director of Mortgage Banking with the Bank of Maine in Portland. He also was Director of Banking Operations at Priority Financial Service in Baltimore, Maryland where he transitioned the mortgage brokerage company into a mortgage banking operation.

“As we continue to implement our strategy, we remain focused on investing in our people, creating scalability and building the right infrastructure to support our growth trajectory,” Gonzalez added. “As we continue to grow in both geographical footprint and client services, we are proud to attract top talent who possess dedication and passion for banking and a commitment to excellence.”

Also joining City National Bank are the following new executives:

Anthony “Tony” Eelman – Managing Senior Vice President, Residential Lending Managing Director. Prior to joining City National Bank, Tony was the SVP of Residential Lending for Sabadell United Bank and has held a number of sales and executive management positions with First Union, USBank, CitiMortgage, and FBC Mortgage over his 19-year mortgage banking career. He received the coveted 2015 C-Level Executive of the Year honor from the Orlando Business Journal.

Carmen Valdivia – Senior Vice President, Residential Sales Director. Valdivia is a mortgage professional with significant experience throughout the Florida market. Her career spans 35 years with national companies including GE and MGIC along with Florida banking institutions Southeast Bank, SunTrust, Ocean Bank, TotalBank, Sabadell United Bank.

Susan I. Mitchell – Senior Vice President, Residential Risk Underwriting Manager

Prior to five years with Sabadell United, Mitchell gained experience at The Bank of Maine and Kennebunk Savings Bank, both in Kennebunk, Maine. She has more than 25 years of experience originating, processing and underwriting for retail and wholesale entities, and can underwrite for Bank Portfolio, FNMA, FHLMC, VA, FHA and Investors.

Yaira N. Mejia – First Vice President, Senior Mortgage Banker - Meija has more than 20 years of experience in the banking industry. Yaira has counseled more than a thousand families on how to purchase and refinance their homes. Skilled in Portfolio Management, Financial Risk, Residential Mortgages, Commercial Lending, Meija returns to City National Bank where she began her career in 1994.

City National Bank recently announced its second quarter earnings, marked by increased earnings, strong loan growth and superior asset quality. The bank is on target to surpass the $9 billion asset mark and has $6.7billion in deposits and $6.1 billion in loans.

About City National Bank of Florida

Headquartered in Miami, City National Bank (CNB) is the financial institution to which Floridians have turned for 70 years. With more than $8 billion in assets, CNB is one of the largest financial institutions based in the state. City National Bank is a subsidiary of Chilean bank, Banco de Credito e Inversiones (Bci), and remains a South Florida-based community bank with local decision making. City National Bank is one of the most liquid and best capitalized banks in Florida and is rated 5 stars "Superior" by BauerFinancial. CNB was voted Best Community Bank, Best Business Bank, Best Bank for Commercial Real Estate, Best Bank for Jumbo Loans, Best Private Bank and Best Foreign National Mortgage Lender by the readers of the Daily Business Review for the past four years. The South Florida Business Journal named it Business of the Year in 2013 and Community Bank of the Year in 2013 and 2011. CNB offers a diversified portfolio of financial products and services at 26 convenient banking centers from Miami-Dade County to Central Florida. 

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