Monitor Women’s List 2019: Aylin Cankardes

by By Monitor Staff Nov/Dec 2019



Aylin N. Cankardes

Rockwell Financial Group/RC Energy Group
Board Member, Equipment Leasing and Finance Foundation
Council Chair and Vice-Chair, Colorado Women’s Business Enterprise



As the founder of Rockwell Financial Group, Aylin Cankardes is responsible for managing the growth, strategy and vision of the company operations on a national scope. With an extensive structure finance background in managing multi-million dollar transactions, Cankardes aimed to build both a successful independent lessor and a renewable energy project company simultaneously, despite the industries’ differences. Success required a commitment to team building, thinking big, taking risks and being decisive.


“I imagine a future with no bias regarding gender, which leads to something powerful and unprecedented. There are no gender specific conferences, breakout sessions, luncheons or cocktail hours, and men in black, gray or blue suits are not the majority in meetings.” 

Starting her career in contract negotiations and moving into sales provided a great foundation for learning these disparate industries from the inside out. Having high sales quotas taught Cankardes to manage deadlines, juggle priorities, ask questions, listen and focus on the customer’s bottom line. Among other career highlights, Cankardes also closed the largest portfolio sale in the history of Capital Associates International and eventually managed numerous profitable business units.

When the opportunity to build a new bank leasing group from the ground up came along, Cankardes jumped at the chance. She brought in a high performing team and became the fastest growing division within a few years. Eventually, the parent bank, due to losses from other business units, was unable to grow the division further, inspiring her to strike out on her own, despite the unpredictable road ahead of her. With the help of an excellent, dedicated team and the support of trusted industry partnerships, Cankardes and Rockwell have garnered much success.

“I have had the great pleasure of knowing and working with Aylin for many years,” says Mark Mayper, vice president at KBH. “I always found her to be incredibly focused, organized and knowledgeable about every aspect of a given transaction. Aylin is absolutely as good as it gets in knowing how to get a deal done in the best and most efficient way for all parties concerned. She always has the big picture view of which issues and goals are of the greatest importance in making a transaction work for the customer and brings all of her deep expertise of specific leasing, legal and accounting issues to the forefront to make sure a deal keeps moving towards a successful closing.”

Over the years, Cankardes has served on various non-profit boards, including the ELFA and ELFF. She has supported women business owners in Colorado through her work with the Colorado Women’s Business Enterprise Council and been involved with lobbying efforts on behalf of the industry on Capitol Hill.

Leave a comment