Melissa Macerato, EVP Sales & Marketing
Longbridge Financial

I am incredibly proud of our company’s collective impact during a year of chaos and uncertainty.  Our Reverse Mortgage products assist older Americans in responsibly utilizing their home equity to age in place. Reverse Mortgages have aided countless hard-hit seniors in relieving financial burdens during difficult times, which was especially important given the devastating impact of COVID on older Americans. The team’s work at Longbridge Financial has contributed to a growth year for the reverse mortgage industry and for our company, hitting new records across our sales channels, which are up 3x from two years earlier. Our industry often goes unnoticed despite the vast amount of relief and benefit it brings to tens of thousands of seniors each year. I am grateful that we could assist so many individuals in the vulnerable older population.

I take pride in my role in shaping the growth and development of our organization.  As one of three senior partners leading an organization that has nearly doubled in size in the last year, it has given me immense joy to offer meaningful work about which our employees can be passionate.  At Longbridge Financial, we have created career paths for talented individuals, preparing them to be future leaders in our expanding industry.  This year presented unprecedented challenges in recruiting, developing, and retaining our team members.  We were able to develop and promote 23% of the talent within our organization to add value in new ways and continue to grow their capabilities that align with their career goals. As an executive nothing gives me greater satisfaction than to assemble a fantastic team and inspire that team to deliver on our mission through their passion and hard work.

Despite the many hurdles this year presented, I am probably most proud that I could stay focused on and maximize the opportunities for our growing business while simultaneously supporting the demands of my busy family life. Like many working parents, finding a balance between the needs of a hectic work schedule and being present for my family was a source of stress at times. Through this experience, I have a new appreciation of the role of boundaries and their importance in helping working professionals carve out time to listen, counsel, and support those around us that we hold so dear.  Because my middle and high school children participated in virtual schooling from the comfort of our home this year, I could provide them with a lens into my world as an executive with a demanding role who also happens to be their mother. While I was not always at my best at every moment, as I reflect on the past year’s events, I can say it was a year of personal and professional growth for me. I have developed a greater level of patience, resilience, and, most importantly, compassion.  As I guide my children and watch them follow their passions, I will remember this year as having a real impact in shaping each of us as individuals and, most notably, as a family.

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