Speakers

Gary Acosta
Co-Founder & CEO, NAHREP
Gary Acosta is the Co-Founder & CEO of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals® (NAHREP®). NAHREP is the nation's largest Hispanic business organization with over 40,000 real estate professionals and 100 local chapters. In his capacity as CEO of NAHREP, he created the Hispanic Wealth Project, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with a strategic plan to triple Hispanic household wealth by 2024. In 2018, Mr. Acosta co-founded L'ATTITUDE, a mega-event that celebrates the achievements of the Latino community in business, entertainment, technology, and politics.
Julie Aguilar
Senior Policy and Research Analyst, NAHREP
Julie Aguilar is a Sr. Policy and Research Analyst at the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP). Her research focuses on housing and economic policy to help increase Latino homeownership and bridge racial and ethnic wealth gaps.
Nora Aguirre
Agent, Century 21 Americana
Nora Aguirre is an associate with Century 21 Americana. She has been in the real estate profession for 16 years, rapidly growing her business to become one of the top agents in the country. As a first-generation immigrant from Mexico, she is passionate about educating buyers about real estate and helping them find their next forever home. Ms. Aguirre has grown her business to more than 200 transactions per year resulting in an average of $1.5 million in gross commissions.
Lisa Applegate
Head of Strategic Quality Management, Capital Markets, Wells Fargo Home Lending
Lisa Applegate is the head of Strategic Quality Management within the Capital Markets division of Wells Fargo Home Lending. In this role, she is responsible for a range of activities in support of the revenue-producing lines of business in Home Lending – origination products and programs, including the policy change process and related rules automation. Applegate also oversees investor and insurer relationship management, contracts, and program compliance; HFS origination quality and deficiency management activities, and HFS investor reporting, custodial accounting functions related to assets sold by Wells Fargo. Applegate joined Wells Fargo in April 2014.
AJ Barkley
Neighborhood Lending Executive, Bank of America
AJ Barkley is the Neighborhood Lending Executive for Bank of America, responsible for identifying opportunities to drive successful homeownership among low- to moderate-income borrowers, underserved communities, and multicultural borrowers across the economic spectrum. In her role, she is accountable for the company's Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) commitment and fair lending laws and regulations for home loans, small business, and vehicle lending. She is also responsible for relationship deepening with multicultural, first-time homebuyers and low- to moderate-income consumers through strategic alignment with nonprofits, community advocacy groups, real estate professional organizations, and industry leaders.
Jon Baselice
VP, Immigration Policy , U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Jon currently serves as the Vice President of Immigration Policy at the U. S. Chamber of Commerce. He joined the U. S. Chamber of Commerce in June 2014. He works with Chamber member companies to form Chamber policy positions on various issues and he advocates for sensible immigration policies before Congress and the executive branch agencies. Prior to joining the Chamber, Jon served as an advisor to Senator Rubio for 3.5 years. He held a very important position as one of the Senator's lead immigration advisors during the Senator's involvement with the Gang of 8 and his push for comprehensive immigration reform legislation in the 113th Congress.
Cerita Battles
Managing Director, Head of Community & Affordable Lending, JPMorgan Chase
Cerita is a former JPMorgan employee. She is now returning to the Firm as the Affordable Lending Strategy Managing Director at JPMorgan Chase. She was with the firm for over 8+ years. Cerita comes to the firm with 31+ years of experience in the financial industry, 23 years specifically dedicated to mortgage. Prior to rejoining the firm, Cerita was the Senior Vice President and Head of Retail Diverse Segments for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. While there, she was responsible for establishing the company's strategic plan and lending goals to increase and enable sustainable homeownership among low-to-moderate income homebuyers and communities as well as ethnic minority homebuyers across the full economic spectrum.
Contessa Brewer
CNBC Correspondent
Contessa Brewer is a correspondent and substitute anchor for CNBC appearing throughout Business Day as well as the network's 7 PM ET newscast "The News with Shepard Smith." She covers major news stories for CNBC including presidential elections, hurricanes, the coronavirus pandemic and trade wars. Her specialty coverage areas are casinos, the gaming industry, and the insurance industry. Brewer joined the network in 2017 and is based at CNBC Global Headquarters.
Robert Broeksmit
President & CEO, MBA
Robert (Bob) Broeksmit is President and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). Mr. Broeksmit is a senior finance executive and corporate officer with over 35 years of experience in the mortgage sector. He has directed all aspects of lending activities, including marketing, sales, operations, secondary marketing, loan servicing, and default management. He has also served as a mortgage underwriting expert testifying on many large, high-profile cases.
Martin Cabrera Jr.
CEO, Cabrera Capital
Al Cardenas
Senior Partner, The Advocacy Group at Cardenas Partners
Al Cardenas is a nationally recognized leader in law, business, and politics. He has served as an adviser to U.S. presidents, as counsel of record in a number of precedent-setting and published court decisions, and as a commentator and writer on issues of national importance. He is a frequent contributor on NBC, CNN, FOX, MSNBC, Telemundo, and Univision, and is an opinion writer for a number of national publications. As a senior partner in the firm, he chairs the Latin America and Florida Public Policy Practice Groups and is Deputy Practice Leader of the Public Policy Group.
Armando Falcon
NAHREP Board Advisor | Chairman & CEO, Falcon Capital Advisors
Armando Falcon is CEO of Falcon Capital Advisors LLC, a management consulting firm based in Washington, DC. Falcon Capital Advisors provides strategic advice and technical assistance to financial services companies, mortgage industry participants, technology providers and government agencies on matters involving process reengineering, project management, regulatory compliance, and data analytics. Falcon Capital Advisors is known to be on the cutting edge of market developments, including the digital transformation of the mortgage market.
Mark Fleming
SVP of Decision Science, Chief Economist, First American Financial Corporation
Mark Fleming serves as the senior vice president for Decision Science and chief economist for First American Financial Corporation, a leading provider of title insurance, settlement services and risk solutions for real estate transactions that traces its heritage back to 1889. In his role, he leads an economics team responsible for analysis, commentary and forecasting trends in the real estate and mortgage markets.
Gerald Howard
CEO, NAHB
Jerry Howard, Chief Executive Officer of the National Association of Home Builders, has over 25 years of association experience and a lifetime in the housing industry. Mr. Howard began his association career at the National Association of REALTORS, where he served as a Legislative Analyst for tax issues. Prior to joining NAHB, Jerry Howard served as the Chief Lobbyist for the National Council of State Housing Agencies where he was instrumental in the development of the low-income housing tax credit as part of the Tax Reform Act of 1986.
Lenny McNeill
EVP National Managing Director – Strategic Markets and Consumer Lending, U.S. Bank
Lenny McNeill is currently EVP National Managing Director – Strategic Markets and Consumer Lending at U.S. Bank Home Mortgage. McNeill is a 30-year veteran of the mortgage industry holding several key senior leadership roles during his tenure. Including his current role Lenny's resume consist of the following positions: Senior Vice President and Managing Director, National Strategic Markets; Head of Mortgage Retail Lending & Consumer Direct; Area, Divisional, & Regional Sales Manager; National Director of Multicultural Initiatives & Affordable Lending, and National Director of Strategic Alliances for Caliber Home Loans, Washington Mutual, Bank of America, and Chase. He has served on the Board of Directors or Corporate Board of Governors for NAHREP, NAREB, AREAA, and LANHS.
Mike Miedler
President & CEO, Century 21
Mike Miedler is President & CEO, Century 21. He believes the emotional connection a buyer has with their home and the memories they make while living there is what makes homeownership so special. Named CENTURY 21 Real Estate's president and chief executive officer in January 2019, he is a leader in residential and commercial real estate franchising, brokerage, and management. A 20-year plus veteran with the CENTURY 21 brand, Miedler has served in numerous positions throughout the company including Chief Growth Officer and Senior Vice President of Franchise Sales.
Luis Padilla
2022 NAHREP President, CEO, The Padilla Team at RE/MAX Advance Realty
Luis C. Padilla is the Co-Owner of RE/MAX Oceanside Realty along with his wife Debbie. He emigrated from Cuba to Miami, Florida in 1973 and has been a part of the real estate industry for 33 years. His financial background began at St. Thomas University, where he obtained a bachelor's degree in finance, and a minor in business. He has worked in various sectors of real estate, including commercial and residential lending, REO listing agent, numerous real estate businesses and traditional real estate sales.
Mauricio Perez
Compliance Director | Broker Associate, Twenty Four Seven Realty
With over 21 years of experience in the San Diego real estate market, Mauricio Perez leads an office of over 140 agents in Chula Vista and has prior experience managing over 220 REALTORS® at the KW La Jolla Market Center. Mr. Perez has ranked on the NAHREP Top 250 Latino Agents for three years in a row and was recently recognized as Broker of the Year for both of the local REALTOR® Associations in San Diego County.
Tanya Reu-Narvaez
Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer, Anywhere Real Estate, Inc.
Tanya Reu-Narvaez serves as chief people officer for Anywhere Real Estate, Inc (formerly known as Realogy). Promoted to this role in January 2021, Reu is responsible for all aspects of the employee experience, including diversity & inclusion, engagement, talent management, and compensation and benefits for the Anywhere Real Estate, Inc. enterprise. She serves on Anywhere Real Estate, Inc. Executive Committee and reports to Anywhere CEO Ryan Schneider. Reu has served Anywhere Real Estate, Inc. for 18 years and prior to her role as chief people officer, was senior vice president of Human Resources for the Realogy Brokerage Group (RBG) and Realogy Franchise Group (RFG) business units.
Nuria Rivera
2022 NAHREP President-Elect, CEO, Novation Title Insurance Agency
Nuria Rivera sits on the National Board of Directors and serves as a chapter coach for NAHREP. She is a millennial entrepreneur and launched a title and escrow company in 2015, Novation Title Insurance Agency, of which she is CEO. Although it is a newer company, Novation Title has received Utah's "Best of State" award for four years in a row since in 2016, which was a very humbling experience for Ms. Rivera and her team. Ms. Rivera came to the United States when she was 11 years old and learned a new language and culture.
Sara Rodriguez
Hispanic Wealth Chairperson, CEO, Titan Title LLC
Sara Rodriguez is the CEO/Owner of Titan Title and a partner at Mendez Rodriguez, PLC. Her practice specializes on all matters related to residential and commercial real estate transactions. She served as 2016 President of NAHREP Northern Virginia and has served on the chapter's board of directors since 2013 in various leadership roles. Since 2005, Mrs. Rodriguez has taught DPOR approved courses through various state-licensed schools in both English and Spanish. She also teaches Continuing Legal Education (CLE) for the National Business Institute in Virginia.
Baron Silverstein
President, NewRez LLC
Baron Silverstein has served as President of Newrez LLC since joining the company in May 2020. In his role, Mr. Silverstein oversees all origination, servicing and other enterprise-wide corporate functions. Mr. Silverstein brings over 30 years of industry leadership, including senior roles at Bear Stearns, JP Morgan Chase, Merrill Lynch and Bank of America Securities. Prior to Newrez, Baron was Head of Residential Mortgage at Banc of America Securities, where he worked for over 12 years.
Jaimie Smeraski
Policy, Learning & Research Director, NAHREP
Armando Tam
SVP, Chapter Development, NAHREP
Armando Tam is Senior Vice President, Chapter Development at NAHREP. Tam has extensive experience as a mortgage broker and owned a successful real estate company. He is primarily known for his extensive understanding of All Things Latino. His diverse and eclectic background includes stints in the food scene and Latin music industry as a performer and a producer. Tam's artistic vision led to the creation of NAHREP's weekly webcast, Esta Semana en NAHREP, which enjoyed a 100-episode run.
Lisette Torres
Director, State Government and External Affairs, Rocket Mortgage
Lisette Torres is the Director of State Government and External Affairs at Rocket Companies. In her role, she manages community and stakeholder relations that forward the mission of the organization. She brings 15+ years’ experience working in the financial sector and is passionate about increasing equal access to wealth vehicles for marginalized communities. Through her work, Lisette has spearheaded alternative lending experiences for multicultural segments and helped establish Fair Housing and DEI programs at the California Association of REALTORS®. Her goal is to continue empowering communities by bridging resources, technology and people.
Montell Watson
Director of Diversity Lending & Strategic Partnership, Movement Mortgage
Montell Watson currently leads Movement Mortgages Diversity Lending which strives to grow generation wealth within diverse communities through financial empowerment and awareness. He is an integral part of Movement’s Grab The Key and Comunidad initiatives that focus on getting into the communities that we are serving and having a workforce that mirrors who we serve. In his 6 years at Movement, Watson has also helped lead and implement several corporate initiatives and verticals within the organization, including Movement’s consumer direct channel and servicing retention channel. Watson started his career in mortgage originations in 2008 at Wells Fargo and RBC Bank.
Sarah Wheeler
Editor In Chief, HousingWire
Sarah Wheeler is the Editor in Chief at HW Media, overseeing editorial content at HousingWire, RealTrends and Reverse Mortgage Daily. She joined HousingWire in 2013 as the sponsored content editor and went on to be the magazine editor and managing editor before assuming the EIC role in 2020. Her previous experience includes work in advertising, corporate communications and on newspapers.
Lawrence Yun
Chief Economist, National Association of REALTORS®
Lawrence Yun is Chief Economist and oversees the Research group at the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). He supervises and is responsible for a wide range of research activity for the association including NAR's Existing Home Sales statistics, Affordability Index, and Home Buyers and Sellers Profile Report. He regularly provides commentary on real estate market trends for its 1.4 million REALTORS®.