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Building a business isn’t for the faint of heart. We know. We’ve been there. We have team members who are former business owners or current side-hustlers who know what it takes to navigate the twists and turns in the entrepreneurial journey. You’ll get more than a roadmap. Think of us as a travel guide on your road to success. So, hop on board and enjoy the ride.

A Private club for
entrepreneurs only.

Forge connections with other business owners and gain access to invaluable resources and unwavering support.


He’s got a little street cred.

Meet Lee — horse rancher, entrepreneur, and financial wiz who knows the ups and downs and sideways of running a business. Lee owned and managed a beer distributorship, and successfully navigated it through some brutally tough times. Oh, by the way, he’s our founder and CEO. And we’re happy he’s back in the saddle leading the charge here at the Fort.

Lee Garlach, CEO

Pitch Your Business Idea
And you could win $20,000!

Bank Tank Contest is our version of Shark Tank, where any current business or upstart can pitch their business vision for a chance to win $20,000. Elyce Billany, Fortress Marketing Director, will be hosting the event. Elyce’s side-hustle business was featured on ABC’s Shark Tank.

Feb 22
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Business Savvy

Been there.
Dreamed That.

Fortress Bank Side Hustlers
  • Elizabeth Reitman / VP Residential Bridge and Construction Lending
    Jamie Peel / VP Retail Banking

    “We get what it’s like to run a business. When not working at Fortress, we run a successful cleaning company.”

    Meet the Rest of the Team

    It really takes strong partnerships to get our projects to work. Fortress has been a huge support in what we’re doing.

    Abbey Gilroy


    Hosted by Elyce Billany

    Elyce Billany; Fortress Bank Marketing Director who’s side-hustle business was featured on ABC’s Shark Tank, chats with “The Best of the Midwest” entrepreneurs, innovators and finance experts.