Meet Our Team

The Heartland Renaissance Fund (HRF) team is a talented and knowledgeable group of individuals who work hard to provide the best service to its clients and partners. Our experienced team is dedicated to employing New Markets Tax Credits in the best way to make a difference in our state.

 

Mr. Sam Walls, III – President

Mr. Walls III has more than ten years of corporate finance experience, including tax credit financing. Prior to joining Heartland Renaissance Fund, Mr. Walls was involved with The Hartford where he was involved in structuring financial products to address specific client needs. Prior to The Hartford, he was involved with Baptist Health Foundation as Director of Planned Giving.

Mr. Walls has served on numerous volunteer boards and committees. Presently, he serves on the Board of Directors for the Little Rock Zoo and the Board of Directors for the Pulaski County Big Brothers and Big Sisters. Mr. Walls earned an undergraduate degree from Southern Methodist University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

 

Mr. Leslie Lane, III – Senior Vice President

Mr. Lane has more than ten years of corporate finance experience, including tax credit financing, venture capital/private equity and investment banking. Prior to Heartland Renaissance Fund, Mr. Lane was Vice President for the Arkansas Science & Technology Authority responsible for executing financings for companies in the technology and healthcare sectors. Before joining the Arkansas Science & Technology Authority, Mr. Lane worked with Stephens Inc.

Mr. Lane has served on numerous volunteer boards and committees. Presently, he serves on the Board of Directors for the University of Arkansas Medical Sciences BioVentures incubator and the University of Arkansas Little Rock Center for Innovation & Commercialization. Lane earned a BBA and an MBA from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

 

Ms. Christa S. Clark – Vice President

Ms. Clark has more than 12 years of experience structuring commercial transactions, including real estate, leveraged financing, and private equity. She has served as counsel for both public and private companies in a variety of transactions. Prior to joining Heartland Renaissance Fund in early 2011, Ms. Clark served as the Chief Legal Counsel to Arkansas’s largest public pension plan, negotiating and structuring its direct real estate investments, private placements, and public market investment funds. Ms. Clark serves on numerous nonprofit and volunteer positions in the community including the CARTI Foundation, Ecological Conservation Organization, and the Junior League. She previously worked as an associate attorney in the business law section of Dover Dixon Horne PLLC. She holds degrees in Political Science and Business from Baylor University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Bowen School of Law, where she was elected Associate Editor in Chief of the Law Review.

 

Ms. Bridget D. Barkins – Asst. Project Coordinator

Ms. Barkins has eleven years of experience with Home owners Insurance, Forced Placed Insurance and Marketing Homeowners Insurance. She is also knowledgeable about Bankruptcy Chapter 7 & 13 Filings, Closings, Dismissals and Discharges and has experience reviewing Proof of Claim and Reclassing fees on the Bankruptcy ledger.

Prior to joining the Heartland Renaissance Fund team, Bridget worked as an Executive Customer Relations Manager for Bank of America leading a team of advocates and providing assistance with Foreclosures, Short Sales, Modifications, and Escrow Shortage. While at Bank of America, Bridget worked very close with the Attorney General’s Office to monitor complaints regarding the company. Bridget’s studies included Business Management at Pulaski Technical College NLR and UALR in Little Rock, AR.