Mark Hafner Inducted Into SFNet Hall of Fame

A Letter from Alex Falo on Mark Hafner’s Induction Into the SFNet Hall of Fame

November 2021

It is with great honor that I write to you about Mark Hafner’s recent induction into the SFNet Hall of Fame.

I’ve been part of the Celtic Capital family for over 25 years and remember quite vividly the day I first met Mark, along with his Dad, Bron Hafner, while interviewing for an open credit position as an account executive. I instantly felt comfortable with both as we seemed to share a common philosophical outlook on how to handle credit and more importantly to me, the values we adhere to in our personal lives.

Throughout my career at Celtic Capital, most of my day-to-day contact was with Mark. At the time of my hiring, Mark had become his Dad’s partner in the business, at first establishing new protocols for monitoring the portfolio (the company had recently acquired two portfolios thereby increasing the portfolio size) but increasingly joining his father on referral source visits and prospective client negotiations. As Mark found himself progressively busier with these new duties, my role in the company became clearer.

The most interesting thing about the journey I have taken with Mark over the years is how identical we’ve been in approaching the management of a portfolio and yet how different we are as people. Mark grew up playing beach volleyball and went to college in Santa Barbara, so you can see how he would be considered a “cool, laid-back, kind of guy.” This persona, however, in no way affected his ability to be tough when he needed to be. I, on the other hand, came from a Latin family background with a somewhat fiery personality. The differences in our personalities, combined with the fusion of our credit philosophies and management practices has served the company well and truly bonded our professional partnership and personal friendship.

Mark’s true strengths are both macro (organization) and micro (feel for numbers). He has an uncanny ability to visualize a corporate growth strategy that although some may consider conservative, nonetheless has always put the company, its employees’ and shareholders’ futures before his own needs. These attributes also served him well during his years on the board of SFNet formerly known as the CFA.

I’ve been lucky enough to witness Mark’s growth outside of the office from the very beginning of his marriage to his wife Mary and the subsequent birth of their two children, Dylan and Skylar. Many times, we’ve shared stories of our family lives from the struggles of raising children to the joys experienced of family.

I am truly blessed to have worked alongside Mark for all of these years and am even more so elated that he has been selected to Hall of Fame status. I know all of you reading this will join me in extending to Mark a hearty congratulations!

Alex Falo
Executive Vice President & Chief Credit Officer
Celtic Capital Corporation