Planet Home promotes four women to VP roles

National lender and servicer, Planet Home Lending, LLC, has promoted four women to vice president, reflecting the company’s significant year over year growth through the first half of 2020 in its Distributed Retail and Customer Retention departments, and beyond.

“Planet is passionate about its staff and we are very proud of the success these women have achieved,” said Planet’s COO, and NEXT alumna, Suzy Lindblom. “We made the internal realignments to support our current size and the vision we have for the next five years.”

Distributed Retail

Michaelene Whyte is the new VP of national fulfillment, distributed retail.

Whyte’s prior role as processing manager of the East prepared her to implement gained expertise in managing processing for both the Eastern and the Western regions. She also is helping the company to standardize corporate processing.

Whyte joined Planet Home Lending in October 2018 and has been “instrumental in building procedures and infrastructure for corporate processing in the Eastern region,” the company said.

Stephanie Gibbons’ new title is VP and national underwriting manager, distributed retail.

Previously, she was the Associate VP and underwriting manager of distributed retail. Gibbons manages underwriting for the Eastern and Western regions. “She has identified areas to improve and streamline underwriting and driving process improvement.”

Starting in September 2019, Gibbons has been busy forming extensive partnerships within Planet Home Lending, especially between sales and operations staff, notably contributing to building a strong and highly efficient underwriting team.

Customer Retention

Lauren Reames is expanding her responsibilities as processing manager of retention, to VP of national fulfillment, retention.

“Reames has been instrumental in building the company’s fulfillment unit,” according to a company statement, earning a well-deserved promotion, and the opportunity to bring this key unit to the next level.

Reames has been working at Planet Home Lending since July 2017. She started as a processor. Soon after, Reames remarkably evolved into e leader who managed to build up the customer-retention processing unit “to more than 60 people, with plans to continue growing.”

Nicole Berg earned the title VP of national underwriting manager of retention.

Formerly an Associate VP and underwriting manager of retention, Berg has progressively taken more responsibilities at Planet Home Lending, “progressing from underwriter, to team lead, to manager,” the company said. She has a reputation among peers, “for building strong internal partnerships.”

Berg joined Planet Home Lending in September 2013.

“Distributed retail and retention are areas where we have seen a great deal of growth and expect to see even more in the future,” Lindblom said.

Planet Home Lending is an approved conventional loans originator and servicer, as well as a Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae Seller/Servicer, a full Ginnie Mae Issuer, approved sub-servicer, and rated special and prime residential loan servicer. Its correspondent division provides a full suite of government, agency and niche home loans. 

Planet Home Lending is committed to promoting the continued professional growth all employees and tapping internal talent for key positions, especially women, the Meridien, Conn., headquartered company said.


Avanta Residential hires CRE professional

Commercial real estate veteran, Penny Bradbury has joined Avanta Residential, a newly created affiliate of Hunt Companies, Inc., which has completed more than $9 billion in single-family rental (SFR) home developments in the past 30 years.

In her new role, she will coordinate the finance and capital market executions for Advanta’s build-to-rent SFR development projects and neighborhoods. She brings 29 years of commercial real estate lending, loan servicing and portfolio management experience.

Prior to joining Avanta, Bradbury held various positions in banking and the commercial mortgage finance. Among others, she served at Hunt Real Estate Capital’s commercial real estate lending division in Denver.

Bradbury holds a Bachelor’s of Business Administration degree, in banking and finance from the University of Mississippi.

“We are pleased to have Penny re-join the Hunt family,” said Jim Dobbie, president of Avanta Residential. “She brings a wealth of knowledge in the real estate lending sector, and she adds an experienced perspective to this relatively new business unit at Hunt.”

Founded in 2020, to create “purpose-built” SFR neighborhoods in targeted regions of the U.S., according to the company website, Avanta works with investors, major homebuilders, and land developers to deliver affordable SFR homes.

During its more than 30 years long history of developing, building, and operating SFR properties, Hunt Companies has delivered more than 70,000 units. More recently, “despite a slowing in rental rates and velocity in typical multifamily rental developments,” the company said, the SFR sector has been flourishing. It is the reason why Advanta was born.

SFR homes offer “amenity-rich neighborhoods” that provide privacy, community, convenience of parking, and personal outdoor space, backyards, green communities and streets that make SFR desirable.

Elder Research welcomes VP of gov analytics & innovation

Elder Research welcomed Christina Ho to her role as vice president of government analytics and innovation lead, in charge of delivering “trustful and practical solutions” that bring about effective actions and transformation.

Headquartered in Charlottesville, Va., Elder Research provides data science, machine learning, and artificial intelligence consulting. Ho was a fit because she is passionate about using data and leveraging technology “to solve complex problems for public good,” the firm said in a statement.

Ho brings decades of deep experience in the financial services industry such as mortgage banking, securities, sovereign debt management, capital access programs, and treasury operations. It includes serving the federal government, policy development, strategic planning, program and financial management, operations, auditing, consulting, and technology innovation.

As the former deputy assistant secretary for financial transparency at US Treasury, Ho received the US Treasury Secretarial Meritorious Service Award in recognition of her “achievement in leading the government-wide implementation of the DATA Act in 2017.” Her efforts to transform government-wide spending information from disconnected documents into open data greatly improved transparency and accountability.

Prior, Ho was the controller and interim chief financial officer for University of Maryland College Park (UMD), managing a $2B annual budget and a diverse research portfolio of over $1B in grants and contracts.

At UMD, she transitioned her office from a manual transaction-based organization to an innovative business partner, by significantly expanding UMD’s analytics capacity. In addition, she led the development of high quality financial forecast models and analysis related to major infrastructure and economic development efforts.

“Christina enthusiastically embodies our values,” said Elder Research CEO, Gerhard Pilcher. “I feel fortunate that she decided to join our team.”

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