Pioneer Company


interior conference room

Board of Directors

James Reed imageDr. James K. Reed - Board Chair

Dr. James K. Reed, president and CEO of St. Peter's Health Partners, was appointed to the Pioneer Board of Directors in April 2017. He replaced Charles C. Freihofer III, whose term expired after 23 years on the Board of Directors. Dr. Reed was named President and CEO of St. Peter's Health Partners upon the merger of Northeast Health, Seton Health, and St. Peter's Health Care Services. Since that time, Dr. Reed has overseen the management and growth of the region's largest and most comprehensive not-for-profit network of high-quality, advanced medical care, primary care, rehabilitation and senior services.

Dr. Reed received his undergraduate degree in economics from Amherst College, then attended the Wharton School where he received his MBA. He has held a number of high level finance positions including Director of Corporate Finance at International Paper Company, and Director of Acquisitions and Divestitures at Union Pacific Corporation. He then went on to become the Chief Medical Officer of Northeast Health, ultimately taking on the responsibilities and title of President and CEO.

Dr. Reed is also a board officer of the Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company (MLMIC), board and Executive Committee member of the CEG, board member of HealthNow New York Inc., and Capital Region Chamber of Commerce.

Eileen Bagnoli imageEileen Bagnoli

Eileen was elected to the Pioneer Board of Directors on July 20, 2010. Eileen currently serves on the Bank's Board Loan, Risk and HR/Compensation Committees. She also serves as a Director on the Board of Pioneer Commercial Bank. Eileen joined Pioneer in 1972 and during her tenure held progressively responsible positions at Pioneer in retail branch management, marketing, human resources and operations. Eileen was named Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer in 2003 and promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer in June 2010. Eileen retired from Pioneer at the end of June 2013 after a 41 year career with the Bank.

Eileen was actively involved in the New York Bankers Association as well as the Independent Bankers Association of New York State. She served as a director and past board chair of the Commission on Economic Opportunity and the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation Board and additionally served for over twenty-two years on the board of the Helping Hands School. In 2008, she was honored for her distinguished career with the "Women of Excellence" award by the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce and in 2010 was the recipient of the Capital District Business Review's Women in Business Outstanding Executive award. Eileen currently serves on the board of WMHT. Eileen lives locally with her husband, Richard.

Stacey Hengsterman picture

Stacey Hengsterman

Stacey was elected to the Board of Directors in January 2021. Stacey currently serves on the Bank's Governance & Nominating Committee and Board Risk Committee. As President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Special Olympics New York, Stacey Hengsterman leads the largest Special Olympics chapter in the country and the sixth largest in the world. Prior to taking the role in July 2018, Hengsterman spent two decades shaping state higher education policy as a top advisor to the chancellor, Board of Trustees, and 64 campus presidents at the State University of New York (SUNY).

Drawing on what she's learned throughout a distinguished career in public service, and as a mother to a son with Down syndrome, Hengsterman has a set a vision for the future of Special Olympics New York that positions New York to be the most inclusive state in the country.

Special Olympics New York serves more than 67,000 athletes – children, youth and adults with intellectual disabilities. It provides year-round sports training and competition in 22 sports; partners with nearly 250 schools statewide to offer Unified Sports, where students with and without intellectual disabilities compete as teammates; and works to improve athlete health. Because all Special Olympics New York programming is provided free to athletes and their families, the statewide nonprofit also coordinates hundreds of fundraising events per year.

Hengsterman's vision includes recruiting and supporting the next generation of Special Olympics New York athletes and coaches; growing the Unified Sports movement; advancing a comprehensive health agenda; increasing awareness, engagement and understanding; and identifying new partners and philanthropic champions to support its athletes as well as its work to create unified, inclusive schools and communities across New York.

A Rochester, NY, native and a graduate of the State University of New York at Cortland, Hengsterman lives in Clifton Park with her husband Rick, a high school history teacher, and their three children, Jackson, Alex, and Lauren.

Shaun Mahoney pictureShaun Mahoney

Shaun was elected to the Pioneer Board of Directors in April 2019 and serves on the Board Loan and Compliance Committees. For more than 30 years Shaun Mahoney has been passionate about Leadership Development. He is the Founder and CEO of the Mahoney Performance Institute and is the current Chairman of NextRidge, Inc. He has also served in a number of management and executive roles at private and public companies such as The Chase Manhattan Bank, Equifax, and Housecall Medical Resources.

As founder of the MPI, Mr. Mahoney has developed a continuum of leadership development programs from personal leadership for employees to rising managers through senior management. There are over 450 alumni of MPI's Leadership Programs in the Capital Region.

Mr. Mahoney is a board member for the Center of Economic Growth, NextRidge Inc., a member of the Albany 50 Group and the former Chairman of the Dean's Advisory Council for the Siena College School of Business. Mr. Mahoney is a graduate of Fordham University and is also a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).

Ed Reinfurt imageEdward Reinfurt

Ed was elected to the Pioneer Board of Directors on November 21, 2006. Ed currently serves on the Bank's Audit, Board Loan, Risk and HR/Compensation Committees. He also serves as a Director on the Board of Pioneer Commercial Bank. Ed was the Director of the Empire State Development Division of Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR), retiring from this position in February 2014.

Prior to his appointment at NYSTAR, Ed was Vice President of The Business Council of New York State for twenty seven years. He also served in the capacity of Director of Government Affairs for both the Carrier Corporation and Associated Industries of New York State. During his career, Ed has spent considerable time on a wide variety of public policy issues. He was a member of the New York State Department of Health's Committee on Public Health Priorities, the Governor's Task Force to Restructure Employment, Health and Social Services, and the Accountability Team of the Labor and Education Department's joint committee reviewing the State's Workforce Development System. Ed served as past chair and board member of Northeast Health, Inc. and currently serves as Vice Chairman of "Kids Count" in Watervliet. Ed lives locally in Albany.

Lyn Taylor pictureMadeline (Lyn) Taylor

Lyn was elected to the Pioneer Board of Directors on July 15, 2003. She currently serves on the Bank's Audit, Board Loan, Risk and HR/Compensation Committees. She also serves as a Director on the Board of Pioneer Commercial Bank. Lyn is a consultant to the Association Management Division of Capital Hill Management Services where she is involved in Business Development and Client Relations. Prior to this, Lyn spent seventeen years with the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce where she served in various executive level positions, the last seven years of which were as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber. It is during her tenure as Chamber President that Lyn is credited with spearheading the "Tech Valley" initiative of the Capital Region and became a founding member of the Tech Valley Chamber Coalition. Lyn has a history of being involved in the community, serving on the boards of the New York State Economic Development Council, the Empire State Certified Development Corporation, the Albany Academy for Girls, Albany Memorial and Samaritan Hospitals and as a member of the President's Council of Russell Sage College.

She was appointed by former Governor George Pataki to serve on the Board of the Harriman Campus Development Corp. Lyn has been the recipient of several awards, including being named one of the "100 Women of Excellence" by the Women's Business Council of the Albany-Colonie Chamber, the Marketer of the Year by the American Marketing Association, Distinguished Leadership Award by the National Association for Community Leadership and was featured as a "Woman in the News" by the Women's Press Club of New York State. Lyn travels frequently between the East and West Coast, recently establishing residence in California with her husband Allen.

Executive Management

Tom Amell pictureThomas Amell - Chief Executive Officer & President

After graduating from Siena College, Tom accepted a position at a local bank, beginning what would become a very successful career in banking. Tom has worked in different areas of banking including retail and commercial, sales management and executive leadership. He began at Pioneer in August 2012. As President and CEO, Tom's primary role is to provide executive level leadership to the team by helping to develop strategy, motivate employees and to remove barriers so people can be successful. He is passionate about building an organization that is centered on employee engagement and customer loyalty.

Tom is currently a member of the 50 Group, a Vice Chair of Siena College Board of Trustees, Vice Chair of the New York State Bankers Association, a current member and previous chair of CEG, and has served as the chair of the Independent Bankers Association of New York.

Tom earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration at Siena College and a master's degree from SUNY Albany in 1992. He resides in Ballston Lake with his wife.

Kelli Arnold pictureKelli Arnold - Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy & Innovations Officer

Kelli joined Pioneer with diverse experience in the finance sector. In her past roles she has lead multistate teams focused in commercial, health care, not-for-profit and municipal banking in addition to community development activities and CRA regulatory compliance in banks including KeyBank, First Niagara, and HSBC. While she has a long tenure on banking, Kelli spent the first ten years of her career in health care regulatory, capital, and policy work, after receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree from the SUNY Oswego and an MBA in Health Care Administration from Union Graduate College.
Kelli is passionate about community involvement and mentoring young professionals. She is active in various community organizations. She is currently on the Board of the Rensselaer Chamber of Commerce the, and previously Chair of the Board at SEAT Center, Schenectady and has served on the boards for of Interfaith Partnership for the Homeless, Rensselaer Regional Chamber of Commerce, Capital Affordable Housing Funding Corporation, Catholic Health of Buffalo, and CenterState CEO. She mentored numerous young professionals though various bank and community-based channels.

Susan Hollister imageSusan Hollister - Executive Vice President & Chief Human Resources Officer & Corporate Secretary

Susan joined the Pioneer Executive team as EVP, Chief Human Resources Officer & Corporate Secretary in 2016. Prior to joining Pioneer, Susan held the position of Senior HR Manager for First Niagara Bank, Chief Human Resources Officer for Hudson River Bank & Trust Co. and Chief Human Resources Officer for National Savings Bank of Albany.

At Pioneer, Susan is responsible for the development and implementation of a human resource strategy in support of the overall business plan and strategic direction of Pioneer. Susan holds a degree in Business Administration as well as a Senior Level Certification through the Society of Human Resources Management. Susan was previously named with the "40 Under 40" awards from the Albany Business Review. She serves as the Cochair for the Committee on Human Resources for the New York State Bankers Association. Additionally, Susan co-chairs the Pioneer Charitable Foundation and serves on the board of directors for the Northeastern New York Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and the board of directors for AAA Hudson Valley.

Patrick Hughes picturePatrick Hughes - Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Patrick joined Pioneer in November 2016 as Chief Financial Officer. In that role, Patrick is a member of executive management where his responsibilities include strategic planning, as well as overseeing all financial operations of the Bank and its subsidiaries including asset liability management, financial reporting, accounting, and tax. In addition, he advises the Board of Trustees and management on the Bank's on-going financial performance, as well as forecasting future operating results.

Patrick comes to Pioneer with considerable industry expertise. He has garnered a professional reputation for developing organizational vision and future growth, as well as reviewing and executing strategic initiatives and best practice approaches to company operations. Prior to joining Pioneer, Patrick spent 20 years with UHY Advisors / UHY LLP, one of the nation's leading professional services firms, where he was a trusted advisor to a variety of clients in the public and private sectors while specializing in the financial services industry. For the last 10 years with the firm he served as a Managing Director and Partner, during which he oversaw the firm's National Financial Services practice.

Patrick is a Certified Public Accountant and also holds the Chartered Global Management Accountant designation. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants. Patrick earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the State University of New York, College at Brockport. Among the awards that Patrick has received throughout his career, one of the most memorable achievements was being named one of the region's rising stars with the "40 Under 40" award from the Albany Business Review.

Patrick is actively involved in the community and currently serves on a number of local boards including Vanderheyden Hall and Siena College. Patrick is a lifelong Capital Region resident, he enjoys spending time with his kids, biking, and the outdoors.

Jim Murphy photoJames Murphy - Executive Vice President & Chief Credit Officer

Jim’s banking career spans four decades during which he has held various line and management roles in commercial lending. Prior to joining Pioneer in 2023, Jim was the Chief Commercial Lending Officer at Community Bank, N.A., and the Chief Credit Officer at Kinderhook Bank and NBT. He spent much of his career at JPMorgan Chase in both line and credit executive positions. At Pioneer, Jim will provide leadership and expertise in all aspects credit, ensuring the overall quality of Pioneer’s lending portfolio.

Jim received a BS in Finance from Siena College and an MBA from Russell Sage College and is a current board member for Pursuit Lending Corporation, serving on their loan and audit committees.

Robert Nichols imageThomas Signor - Executive Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer

Tom joined Pioneer in July 2022 as EVP, Chief Administrative Officer with approximately three decades of experience in the community banking industry. In his role with Pioneer, Tom will oversee Deposit and Retail Loan Operations as well as Compliance, Risk, Information Technology, Security, and Facilities

Tom holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Siena College and is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant in New York State. Prior to joining Pioneer, Tom served as EVP & Chief Operating Officer at Kinderhook Bank where he managed the Deposit and Retail Loan Operations Departments as well as Compliance, Risk, Information Technology, Security, Facilities, and served as the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) Officer for the bank. Prior to his position at Kinderhook Bank, Tom was a shareholder at Pattison, Koskey & Rath, PC, where he managed the internal audits for community bank clients.

Tom enjoys biking, traveling, and spending time with his family.

Jesse Tomczak imageJesse Tomczak - Executive Vice President & Chief Banking Officer

Jesse brings over two decades of financial experience to his role at Pioneer, having managed virtually all disciplines within the financial services industry, including commercial lending, retail branch banking, and investment banking.

As Chief Banking Officer and a member of executive management since 2013, Jesse is responsible for all commercial development, retail network, insurance services, and wealth management. He describes himself as a "very hands-on executive," spending a great deal of his time with the frontline individuals, the folks who have first-hand interactions with our customers. He enjoys bringing the organization's strategic vision to the individuals ultimately responsible for delivering that vision to the public. He lists the highlights of his banking career as those moments when his team members' accomplishments exceeded their expectations. Those moments continue to motivate him to give his all each and every day. Jesse received a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Management and Human Resource Management from the University of Akron.

Jesse volunteers for many local charities and serves on multiple boards. He likes to spend time with his family, loves the outdoors, and enjoys the many social activities that the Capital Region has to offer.