James Owens Joins Xactus As CTO

James Owens has joined verification company Xactus as Chief Technology Officer, the company announced in a press release. “The opportunity to transform an industry is a rare chance in a career. Verification solutions and the associated workflow in mortgage originations has not been challenged for many years, and Xactus is making substantial technology investments to innovate, increase efficiency, and enhance transparency,” Owens said.  “I look forward to joining Xactus, and playing a role in leading our industry’s technology migration to the modern mortgage experience.” As CTO, Owens will set and oversee Xactus’ tech strategy, including technical aspects of product development and implementation, as well as IT and data security. He brings 30 years of executive-level experience in financial services and…

Ishbia Under Fire After Slamming Rocket Mortgage As The Industry Sees Reductions In Workforce

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The CEO of United Wholesale Mortgage has come under fire after posting online that he is “disappointed” with Rocket Mortgage’s decision to offer buyouts to members of its workforce. Mat Ishbia posted on LinkedIn last week that this should not be necessary for a company that made over $5 billion in profits last year. “These 2,000+ people will struggle to find new jobs, and I think it’s disgusting that they’re thinking short term and are solely focused on cutting a few million per month in costs… this is the wrong thing to do to people,” Ishbia said. Ishbia went on to write that they have not had a single layoff in 35 years at UWM. The post…

Tai Christensen Named Chair Of American Mortgage Diversity Council

CBC Mortgage Agency’s Tai Christensen has been named chair of the American Mortgage Diversity Council (AMDC), the company announced in a press release. Christensen will succeed Lola Oyewole, the outgoing chair. “Working for a company that aligns closely with my desire to erase racial disparity in homeownership has been so gratifying,” Christensen said. “So, when the opportunity to support the American Mortgage Diversity Council arose last year, I jumped at the chance. Little did I know I would be given the opportunity to help guide the council as chair just a year later. I am honored to have the opportunity.” AMDC works with business leaders to make the mortgage sector a more diverse and inclusive industry.   CBC Mortgage Agency is…

New Board Leadership At Nation’s First Credit Union

St. Mary’s Bank has elected Stephen Grzywacz as Chairman and Elizabeth Hitchcock as Vice-Chairman, the company announced in a press release. Grzywacz served on St. Mary’s Board of Directors since 2010 and is President and CEO of Milford Lumber Company and Muir Lumber Corporation. He is also Treasurer and CEO of P.J. Currier Lumber Company, and is a Trustee/Chairman for Manchester High School Central Alumni Scholarship Trust and Trustee for Holy Trinity Cathedral. Grzywacz will replace past Chairman Guy Chapdelaine, who will remain on the Board of Directors. Elizabeth Hitchcock has served on the Board of Directors since 2015. She is a General Partner at the Millworks Fund, an investment fund supporting New Hampshire’s startup community. Hitchcock was an Outstanding Women’s…

Frank Martell Joins loanDepot As CEO, Hsieh Named Executive Chairman

loanDepot has named Founder and Chairman Anthony Hsieh as its new Executive Chairman, while industry leader Frank Martell joins as President and CEO, a newly-created role, the company announced. Martell has also been appointed to the Board of Directors. As President and CEO, Martell will handle daily operations, while Hsieh will guide company strategy and add to Martell’s overall leadership. loanDepot’s executive management team will report to Martell. “From our beginning, as a de novo start-up in 2010, we have always made bold and timely decisions,” said Hsieh.  “We built ourselves during a time when many other lenders were exiting the industry and grew to become a company that hundreds of thousands of customers rely upon each year. Across the…

Rocket Mortgage Works To End Digital Divide In Detroit

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Leaders at Rocket Mortgage are working to end the digital divide in Detroit where it is estimated that one-quarter of residents do not have internet access. That number is down from nearly 40% in 2016, according to Dana Afana at Detroit Free Press, but those working on the issue say there is still a long way to go especially considering how important the internet is post-2020. The Changing the Course initiative was established in that year to end the digital divide in Detroit, where Rocket Mortgage is located. Money raised from The Rocket Mortgage Classic, which made history in 2019 as the first PGA TOUR ever held in the city, supports the campaign. The tour raised $1.35…

Guild Mortgage Gets Ahead With “A Customer For Life” Strategy

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Leaders at a California-based lender that generated $36.8 billion in origination volume last year say they are finding success because they focus on creating customers for life. Guild Mortgage, located in San Diego, has been originating and servicing residential loans since 1960. Their origination volume in 2021 was up about 5% from $35.2 billion in 2020. The company’s in-house servicing portfolio grew 18% year-over-year to $70.9 billion in the fourth quarter of 2021, with Guild retaining servicing rights for 80% of total loans sold. Last month, they earned their fifth consecutive Servicer Total Achievement and Rewards performer recognition from Fannie Mae. According to a press release, the STAR Performer recognition is reserved for top-performing servicers in one or…

Former GrubHub President Joins Houwzer

GrubHub’s Jonathan Zabusky is joining real estate brokerage Houwzer’s board as Executive Chairman, the company announced in a press release. Zabusky most recently served as the President and Board Director at GrubHub Inc., and is an advisor, entrepreneur, and investor. He was previously CEO of Seamless, which merged with GrubHub. He is also the Founder and Managing Partner of Bounce Ventures LLC and serves as an advisor and board director to a portfolio of venture and private equity-backed companies in the U.S. and Israel. “I am incredibly excited to join Houwzer’s Board as Executive Chairman and to have the opportunity to work alongside Mike and his outstanding team. I’m energized by our mission to elevate the home buying and selling…

Andrea Easter Appointed Open Mortgage CCO

Open Mortgage has appointed Andrea Easter to be its first Chief Compliance Officer, the company announced in a press release. Easter will oversee the Compliance Department, managing all risk-related functions including the development and implementation of policies and procedures regarding state and federal regulations and agency requirements. Easter will also be responsible for the facilitation of an annual risk assessment as well as internal and third-party audits and investigations. She reports to Open Mortgage President Joe Stephenson and will hold a fiduciary duty to the Board of Directors. “As Open Mortgage continues to experience unprecedented growth, it’s vital that we diligently safeguard both the firm and our clients with a company-wide compliance approach centered around our brand values,” said Stephenson. …

Kevin Randolph Says Fast 15 Guarantee For Brokers Based On New Technology

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Rocket Pro TPO is promising to clear eligible loans in no more than 15 business days and leaders there say they are able to guarantee these closing times because of the company’s investment in technology. Kevin Randolph, Senior Vice President of Operations at Rocket Pro TPO, said they have spent billions of dollars to accelerate their creation of propriety technology. They have rolled out new programs such as PathFinder, a proprietary mortgage guideline search engine. Rocket Connect provides brokers with communication with underwriters and operational leaders directly in the broker portal. Rocket Pro TPO’s new pricing calculator can deliver brokers a pricing estimate quickly and easily, according to the company. Randolph said in an interview with The…