We are LendKey

See how we empower lenders everyday

We founded our company in 2009 after the Great Recession, during a difficult time for financial institutions facing the triple threat of high capital requirements, increased regulatory scrutiny and nascent fintech companies focused on disrupting banks and credit unions.

We invested $30 million dollars to create and continually innovate a lending-as-a-service platform to help lenders—our customers—build and run a profitable digital lending business.

We had the foresight to recognize that financial services firms needed a reliable partner that could become integral to their business success. We have been steadfast in our commitment to provide a service that strengthens our partners that are focused on Main Street and our local communities nationwide.

Today we’re the end-to-end digital lending partner to hundreds of banks and credit unions, from delivering new customers and members to servicing throughout the life of a loan. Lenders now can offer credit products online in an efficient, secure way, and give borrowers a seamless digital lending experience.

We’ve deployed more than $2.5 billion in lending capital and serviced more than $1.75 billion in loans on behalf of hundreds of banks and credit unions. In all, more than 76,000 consumers have had their financing needs met through lenders that partner with LendKey.

Leadership team

CEO & Founder

Vince Passione

Vince is the founder and CEO of LendKey, the market’s most advanced lending platform and network, and a veteran technologist for financial services companies. Before LendKey, Vince was the COO of DealerTrack, the nation’s first and largest automotive credit portal. He has also been the President of Ameritrade’s Institutional Client Division, the CEO of OnMoney.com, the CTO of Citigroup’s US Consumer Bank and a Business Unit Executive at IBM. Vince received his B.S. from Polytechnic University.

COO & Co-Founder

Mike Stallmeyer

As COO, Mike is responsible for all financial management, lending operations, credit and risk analytics, and client service. He brings 20 years of experience across financial services. Previously, Mike worked for a number of global organizations in investment banking, fixed income structured finance, portfolio management, and capital markets—including UBS where he served as Executive Director of the Investment Bank and as Vice President at Credit Suisse. Mike began his career in banking at Fifth Third and received his BA in economics from Duke University.

Chief Marketing Officer

Lewis Goldman

Lewis is a digital marketing and E-Commerce pioneer who has helped create and scale businesses and brands for leaders such as Citibank, MetLife and CNBC. He has worked across all lending categories including unsecured lines and loans, home equity, credit cards, auto loans, and mortgages. At LendKey, Lewis is accelerating the company’s growth by creating a strong brand position, driving the vision and execution of its marketing efforts, and expanding its business development and customer acquisition initiatives.

SVP, Engineering

Michael Hawkins

Mike has decades of experience in software engineering and product management in the complex, and highly regulated markets, of finance and healthcare. He leads LendKey’s engineering team—creating a seamless experience that gives borrowers the experience they want and puts forward the best version of our lending partners. Before LendKey, Mike served as CTO of SoMoLend, a crowdfunded startup based in Cincinnati. He is the lead author of four patents in adaptive workflow, resource prioritization, and UX.

SVP, Regulatory Compliance Counsel

David Mark

David is responsible for managing all legal and regulatory affairs for LendKey, with an emphasis on consumer financial services. On the regulatory side, David’s focus is on compliance with consumer lending laws and regulations as they pertain to LendKey’s loan origination and servicing platform.  David is an active member of the American Bar Association’s Consumer Financial Services Committee, Association of Corporate Counsel, and he serves as a Subject Matter Expert for the CUNA Councils Community (Regulatory/Legislative/Compliance Community). David is admitted to the New York Bar, and he holds a Bachelor of Arts degrees in Business Administration from the University of Florida, a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Florida Atlantic University, and a Juris Doctor degree from Florida International University College of Law.

SVP, Head of Product

Samir Suri

Samir is charged with guiding the vision of LendKey’s platform and enhancing the user experience for our lending partners and borrowers. Prior to LendKey, Samir served as Senior Director at Oportun Inc., a social enterprise that helps provide access to affordable credit for individuals who are underserved or unbanked. During his five year tenure at Oportun, the company’s loan portfolio grew from $85 million to nearly $1 billion. Samir holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, and an MBA from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

SVP, Infrastructure

Anoop Thyagarajan

Anoop is one of the founders of LendKey and oversees information and data security, data governance, and infrastructure. He began his career as a technology officer at KobeMail and a Software Engineer at Ewomp. He holds a degree from the College of Engineering Chengannur in Kerala.

SVP, Lender Partnerships

Christian Widhalm

Christian leads lender partnerships and works with clients to create profitable and successful digital lending programs. His tenure at LendKey began in 2010 and he has carried impactful leadership roles covering nearly every surface of the organization.  Christian is an expert in digital lending and frequently speaks to bank executives on how to better attract the Millennial demographic. His career began working in partner sponsorships for Major League Baseball and he holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Finance and Entrepreneurship from Syracuse University.

VP, Education Lending GM

Tom Bohache

Tom is the VP & General Manager of Education lending, responsible for driving and managing all aspects of the in-school private student loan and student loan refinancing businesses. During his time at LendKey, he has held various roles, including running the Financial Operations, Client Services, and Lender Financial Reporting departments. Prior to LendKey, Tom worked in public accounting for Grant Thornton. He received his BS in Accounting from Miami University and his MS in Accounting from the University of Cincinnati.

VP, Loan Servicing

Ben Farmer

Ben leads LendKey’s loan servicing and collections efforts. Ben has over 20 years of experience managing customer support, servicing, and collections efforts for both student loans and unsecured consumer receivables. Before joining LendKey, Ben worked at Sallie Mae and most recently at TEMPOE in Cincinnati as the senior director of operations.

VP, Home Improvement Lending GM

Nicholas P. Lazares

Nick is a veteran of consumer finance programs and brings over ten years of experience in overseeing home improvement loan programs. He will be responsible for overseeing all business development efforts, enhancing consumer and contractor experience to be best-in-class on the LendKey platform, and maintaining loan portfolio performance.

Prior to joining LendKey, Nick served as VP of Sales at Admirals Bank where he advised efforts to drive over $350MM in Home Improvement consumer loan originations. Nick also led the charge to overhaul antiquated sale processes, implement innovative new loan products, and roll out industry-leading software to improve customer service and grow sales.

VP, Finance & Accounting

Stacey Rohrbaugh

Stacey is LendKey’s VP of finance and accounting. She leads corporate accounting, treasury management, financial reporting and forecasting for the organization. Before LendKey, Stacey managed the accounting arms of Unifund and Luxottica Retail Group. She received her BS in accounting from Miami University and is a CPA.

VP, Senior Product Manager

Chrissy Willoughby

Chrissy is a VP, Senior Product Manager on LendKey’s Product team. She has held various leadership positions in her time with the company, leading LendKey’s loan specialist, loan analyst, and client implementation teams prior to her current role. Before joining LendKey, Chrissy held positions in operations, sales, and service management at Fifth Third Bank. She earned her BS in accountancy from Miami University in Ohio.

Vince Passione

CEO & Founder

Vince Passione is the founder and CEO of LendKey, the market’s most advanced lending platform and network, and a veteran technologist for financial services companies. Before LendKey, Vince was the COO of DealerTrack, the nation’s first and largest automotive credit portal. He has also been the President of Ameritrade’s Institutional Client Division, the CEO of OnMoney.com, and the CTO of Citigroup’s Citi F/I. Vince began his career in technology at IBM and received his bachelor of science degree from Polytechnic University.

Carter Griffin

Updata Partners

Carter Griffin is a General Partner and co-manages the firm’s operations. Carter has more than twenty years experience as an operator and investor in the software industry. Carter co-founded Brivo Systems and served as Chairman and CEO until selling the company to a strategic acquirer. Carter is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and holds a M.B.A. from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.

Danny Schultz

Gotham Ventures

Danny Schultz is a Co-Founder and Managing Director of Gotham Ventures, established 14 years ago in the early days of the NYC tech boom. Over the last two decades he has worked closely with technology companies at all stages of growth with investments ranging from digital media and e-commerce to mobile tech and enterprise software startups. He is attracted to creative and energetic entrepreneurs that seek to disrupt the status quo and loves working with entrepreneurs to help them achieve success. Currently, he leads Gotham’s investments in LendKey, Yipit and Pickie. He was also responsible for a number of Gotham’s successful exits including XOsoft, acquired by CA, Pivot, acquired by the CME Group and Massive, acquired by Microsoft. Some of his other successful investments include SMARTS, acquired by EMC; Insulair, acquired by Georgia Pacific and Active Impulse Systems, acquired by Phillips. Danny ran Lehman Brothers equity private placement business just prior to co-founding his own start-up venture fund, Atlantic Venture Partners, the predecessor to Gotham Ventures. He began investing as an angel and was fortunate to get very early exposure to the Israeli tech scene going back to the mid-1980s. He is a frequent speaker at startup and tech events and also enjoys mentoring young VCs and entrepreneurs. Danny is active with the Kauffman Fellows Program and Endeavor Global and was Co-chair of INGENUITY 2012, New York’s premier startup venture conference. Danny studied Economics at Columbia University and resides with his family in Westchester, New York. In his spare time, he can frequently be found somewhere in Westchester playing hockey, or in nicer weather training for his next triathlon.

Josh Stein


Josh is a Managing Director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson. Josh’s background includes management consulting, strategic analysis, product management and founder level experience in various industries. In addition to serving on the board of multiple DFJ porftfolio companies, Josh serves on the board of directors of the Center for Venture Education and the Kauffman Fellows Program, the leading educational fellowship in venture capital.

W. Thomas Smith, Jr.

TTV Capital

Tom is a co-founder and a Managing Partner of TTV. He has more than 16 years of venture capital experience. Tom was one of the first venture investors to recognize the transformative impact technology would begin having on the constitution and delivery of financial services. Tom was one of the first to identify advances in stored value, money remittance, alternative and mobile payments, services for the underbanked, alternative loan origination and payments-as-a-service. Prior to founding TTV, Tom spent 30 years at IBM in marketing as well as selling and implementation of information technology projects. Throughout his career at IBM, Tom conducted significant business with all of the largest financial services companies throughout the southeastern United States, including the rapidly growing banking centers of Charlotte and Atlanta. His last four years at IBM he was Vice President, Small and Medium Business - IBM Americas, where he had revenue responsibility of approximately $12 billion. The previous decade, he was the IBM Southern Area General Manager, with responsibility for sales, marketing and services business for thirteen states, generating $7 billion in revenues with 6,000 employees. For TTV, he has served on the boards of 14 companies and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Apruve, eWise, Greenlight, and PayGo, and as an observer at LendKey, and MicroBilt. His community affiliations include the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta, Central Atlanta Progress, the Carter Center and the Woodruff Arts Center. He received the Armin Maier citizenship award from the Downtown Rotary Club in 1998. Tom earned a B.S. Degree in Industrial Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology and completed the executive program at Dartmouth’s Amos Tuck School of Business.

Thatcher Bell

Managing Partner, Coventure

Thatcher is an investor and adviser with significant experience in financial technology. At Gotham, Thatcher led the firm’s investment in SinglePlatform through its acquisition by Constant Contact (NASDAQ: CTCT) and worked with portfolio companies Sailthru, AdStruc, EXPO, Lumeta, Verterra and Widetronix. Before joining Gotham, Thatcher was a Senior Analyst at North Hill Ventures, the venture capital affiliate of Capital One Financial, where he worked on the firm’s investments in DealerTrack (NASDAQ: TRAK) and Higher One (NYSE: ONE), among others. Prior to North Hill, Thatcher worked in business development roles for two different start-ups and as a consultant at Ernst & Young (now Cap Gemini Ernst & Young). Thatcher serves on the Board of Directors of the NY Tech MeetUp and the New York chapter of Wharton Private Equity Partners. He earned his undergraduate degree in Engineering from Cornell University and M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Eric Jacobs

EVP & Chief Financial & Administrative Officer, Dealertrack Technologies

Eric is Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer of DealerTrack. Eric’s background includes general corporate and securities law, audit management and financial control. In addition to his role at DealerTrack, Eric is a Certified Public Accountant and serves on various boards.

Joe Proto

Chairman & CEO, Transactis
Joe Proto is Chairman and CEO of Transactis, part of his three decades in the billing and payments industry as a senior executive and successful entrepreneur. Prior to Transactis, he launched REMITCO, a payments company acquired in 2000 by First Data, as well as Financial Telesis (CashFlex) which was acquired in 1992 by CoreStates, now part of Wells Fargo. Joe co-founded Windham Ventures (an innovation leader in healthcare and med tech), and is a limited partner at Metamorphic Ventures (digital media and e-commerce), ff Venture Capital (technology), and Alpine Meridian Ventures. Joe is a director at SpendSmart Payments Company (SSPC: OTC) a fast growing mobile loyalty platform with 5 million digital subscribers. Joe is a member of various financial services organizations including the Association for Financial Professionals (AFP), he is Co-Chair of the Consumer Payments Advisory Committee of the Payments Innovation Council as well as serving on the Board of Advisors at the National Automated Clearinghouse Association (NACHA), and is a frequent speaker at conferences in the financial technology industry.

Howard Tischler

Founder & CEO, EverSafe

Howard Tischler has served as a director of DealerTrack since March 2003, and as lead director since April 2006. He is the CEO of EverSafe. Prior to that he was CEO of Enfocel, and employed by First Advantage Corporation, where he served as Group President of First Advantage Dealer Services. Mr. Tischler currently serves on the Engineering Advisory Board at George Washington University

LendKey in the news

Yahoo! Finance on the Business of Student Lending

Vince Passione, LendKey CEO and Founder, joins Yahoo! Finance to discuss student loans and how LendKey is solving a complex problem for students and lenders in the asset class.

Oct 15, 2018

Teach Me How to Refinance My Student Loans

Vince Passione, LendKey’s Founder and CEO, joined the Stash Invest ‘Teach Me How To Money’ podcast to discuss student loan refinancing and the future of student loans.

Sep 24, 2018

NAFCU Services Announces LendKey as Preferred Partner

NAFCU Services has selected LendKey, a leading full-service digital lending platform for credit unions, as the Preferred Partner for their end-to-end student loan and student loan refinancing solution.

Sep 18, 2018