Employee profile: Tina Comstock

We can all tell stories about the unexpected twists and turns in the road of life, and Tina Comstock is no exception.

Tina, a Grand Rapids native, earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Minnesota-Duluth, and then earned her certified public accountant (CPA) certificate as well as certification as a chartered global management accountant.  She has been career-driven and, after gaining experience out of the area, was delighted to have a chance to live and work in Itasca County.  She worked for a time as a senior business analyst at UPM-Blandin Paper before moving into a role as a part-time insurance agent, a job that suited her family better at the time. 

“I came to work at GRSB because a friend of mine, Shelly Steere, suggested I apply for a job,” explained Tina. “I held the position of purchasing and marketing coordinator for about five months.  During that time I was asked to consider moving into the role of credit analyst, a brand-new position at GRSB.

“Shen Adams was preparing to retire, and Al Liestman was about to be hired,” Tina continued.  “Both of them recommended we hire a credit analyst, so I worked with Shen and Wayne Bruns initially to learn what they had been doing for credit analysis.  Once Al arrived, we refined the process a bit further.

We didn’t invent the credit analyst job, so we were able to borrow job descriptions from other banks and then fine tune it.”

Tina is a Grand Rapids High School graduate while her husband, James, is a Greenway High School graduate.  Their Greenway/Grand Rapids “mixed marriage” has worked well, and their two sons, Josh and Jacob, are active in several programs. 

Tina’s family has devoted a great deal of time to Scouting; Tina herself has been an active volunteer for nine years.  This summer she returned from a national jamboree in West Virginia with a James E. West Fellowship, an honor awarded to individuals for their contributions to the Scouting endowment.  In March this year Tina was honored with the Silver Beaver Award, the highest recognition possible from the Voyageurs Area Council (an area including northern Minnesota, northern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula). 

“It’s hard to put into words what Scouting has meant to my family and me,” said Tina.  “It has been all-consuming in a good way.  The Scouting oath and laws reflect how I’m made up, so it’s easy to represent the movement.  Scouting has taught us so much; not just outdoors skills, but leadership and communications skills, too.  We’ve been privileged to give back as much as we have as a family.”

Josh and Jacob, ages 16 and 14, have also been involved in the National Archery in the Schools Program.  Their archery season begins in December and runs until March, and last year their team competed in the national tournament in Louisville, Kentucky.

Josh is old enough to participate in the high school marching band, and Tina has been one of the “bus moms” as the band travels to various competitions around the state.

For relaxation, Tina likes to travel with a mix of high adventure thrown in.  She has led a group of friends on a canoe camping trip in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area (2012) and hiking along the Superior Hiking Trail (2013).  The group’s plans include a kayaking trip in the Apostle Islands in 2014 and a hike of the Grand Canyon in 2015. 

And for their family vacation, the Comstock’s like to hike into a rental cabin at Tettegouche State Park on the North Shore of Lake Superior for four days over the New Year’s holiday each year. 

You may get a sense, as you read this story, that Tina likes action and getting things done.  That sense of determination follows through to her job at GRSB. 

“As a credit analyst, my job is to review our loan customers’ financial documents to help understand how well the business is performing,” explained Tina.  “Two of us—Dan Foster and I—do that work in conjunction with the business lending team.  I take pride in doing this job well, and I think our customers benefit from us doing the best job we can.”

 

  

Left:  Tina and a Scout group at the National High Adventure Base North of Ely.  Right: Tina and friends on a 2013 trek along the Superior Hiking Trail. 

 

 

Left: Surrounded by her family, Tina receives the Silver Beaver Award.  Right: "Towering Pines Canopy Tour" via zip line at the Gunflint Trail Lodge. 

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