Sandy Headley is a longtime ACE veteran known for her rigorous work ethic and big-picture thinking. She started here 11 years ago as Director of Lending, and she has worked her way up to the title of Vice President.
Headley earned a degree in Business Management from the University of Central Florida. Before joining ACE, she had spent 23 years in banking and is retired from SunTrust Bank.
“I was drawn to ACE because of the mission,” she says. “I believe I was put on earth to help other people. Through ACE, we create jobs that support families, and in turn, strengthens communities.”
One of the highlights of her work was helping Pueblos, a Mexican Cuisine restaurant, launch its first business. It now has expanded into a popular north Georgia empire of establishments in Gainesville, Dahlonega, Cumming, Suwanee, and Dawsonville. The franchise also includes a seafood restaurant, 19 Degrees North, and an Italian restaurant, GrapeVines, both in Dahlonega.
“They’re one of our champion clients,” Headley says. “They make sure their employees are educated on tax returns, they pay good salaries and profit sharing to their managers and provide ongoing training. They give back in many ways. One notable way is providing scholarships every year to four graduating students in the counties where they have restaurants. They are amazing – even during the recession not only did they survive but they were opening new locations and creating jobs. A lot of jobs. They’re one of the reasons I love my work at ACE.”
The future in general looks bright for ACE and small businesses, she says. “We’re going to be seeing a lot of growth,” Headley says. “We have a very aggressive five-year plan in place. The need is there, we have a proven track record, and we have no plans of slowing down. We’re excited and eager to serve those Georgia small businesses in need.”
Headley lives with her husband, Dave, in Cumming. They have two daughters, Shelby, 18, and Samantha, 21.”
“In my down time, I enjoy spending time with my family and exploring the mountains,” she says. “We’re beach people – I’m from Merritt Island – so as a beach person, I really appreciate the landscape of the mountains.”