Bismarck ND Region Team

John Jessen


John has more than 21 years of banking expertise in a variety of capacities. His experience includes processing commercial loans, selling brokerage products in a bank setting and managing the business banking department of a large local bank. John draws on this experience to lead his team as a branch president and ensure that customers receive common-sense solutions and outstanding service. John remains active in day-to-day operations, which allows him to stay in touch with clients and staff. He also serves as the Executive Vice President and Director of the Retail Banking Division for BlackRidgeBANK in addition to being the Chairman of the Senior Credit Committee. In his free time, John enjoys spending time with his family, exercising and playing sports.

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Joel Kostelecky

Vice President - Business Banking Manager

Joel has more than 15 years of banking experience, the last 8 being with BlackRidgeBANK. Joel’s no-nonsense approach to business banking allows him to provide both conventional and unconventional financing options for his clients.In his role he manages the Business Banking functions for the Bismarck region including loan processing, credit administration and credit underwriting. Joel enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters, golfing, rock climbing, skiing, snowboarding and cooking.

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Doug Wentz

Mortgage Loan Officer

Doug has more than 24 years of mortgage expertise. Doug grew up in Jamestown, ND.  He graduated from Northern State University in Aberdeen with a degree in Business and Marketing. He has resided in Bismarck since 1996. In his free time, Doug and his wife Laurie enjoy traveling, often to their children’s sporting events. They have been Bison fans since 2009 when their oldest son Zach played baseball at NDSU. The Bison tradition continued when Carson chose to join the NDSU football team in 2012, and their oldest daughter Caitlin also chose NDSU to pursue a degree in education. Doug, Laurie and their youngest daughter Bailey, along with their son Blake and the rest of the family, plan to spend a lot of their free time in Philadelphia cheering on Carson and his new team, the Philadelphia Eagles.

Marita Olson

Mortgage Loan Officer

Marita has more than 20 years of experience in Finance, Real Estate and Banking. She joined the BlackRidgeMORTGAGE team in 2013 and had been committed to providing her clients with high-quality customer service to meet their specific needs. Marita has a strong work ethic and takes personal pride in educating and guiding her clients throughout the lending process. Marita spent her first year of college at South Dakota State University, located in her hometown, prior to transferring to Minnesota State University – Moorhead, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance.  In her time off, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, boating, and any activity involving sunshine and water.

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Kayla Kraus

Commercial Loan Officer

Kayla has over 10 years experience in the banking industry in various areas including personal and business banking. She has been with BlackRidgeBANK for 8 years, starting in the Fargo bank in 2007 and joined the Bismarck team in 2009. Kayla prides herself in providing exceptional service and exceeding customer expectations. She is a 2008 graduate of North Dakota State University with a degree in Business Administration and minor in Accounting. Kayla is also involved with the Bismarck-Mandan Chamber as an Ambassador. She enjoys spending her free time with family and friends, shopping, and being outdoors.

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Brittany Peterson

Consumer Loan Officer

Brittany joined BlackRidge in 2012 as a teller and later took the position of Client Services Specialist. In her position as a Consumer Loan Officer, she is responsible for originating all types of personal loans such as Home Equity loans, vehicle loans, camper loans and recreational vehicle loans.  Brittany also opens both business and personal deposit accounts.

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Amanda Miller

Customer Service Manager

In 2014, Amanda began working at BlackRidgeBANK as a teller, then took the position of Client Services Specialist. She is currently the Customer Service Manager for the bank and is responsible for managing the operations and cash management functions for the bank as well as the teller area.  Amanda also opens both business and personal deposit accounts.

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