MPA: Can you give me any kind of quantification of your success in the past year, and what is your target loan volume this year?

FV: In 2021, my team and I had the same goal as always: to be better than the prior year. We strived for 400 closed loans and $200 million in loan volume. These were lofty goals, but I knew if we worked hard, we could reach those goals. We fell just short of this with 370 closed loans and $170 million in closed loan volume. We have the same goal for 2022—to be better than 2021 and improve both personally and professionally from the prior year.

MPA: Being a member of Embrace’s President’s Club and ranking in the top 1% of mortgage originators in America in 2020 is quite an achievement. If this was the Academy Awards and you had to give an acceptance speech, to whom would you attribute your success in reaching this milestone?

FV: First and foremost, it would be the support of my family. There are no set hours in this business, and my family must deal with the late nights, early mornings and the constant calls on weekends. Also, I have been very fortunate to be surrounded by such great people and a company that supports me and my ideas, as crazy as they sometimes may sound. I have a great team around me, from sales, to operations, to marketing. All of this plays a huge role in what makes us successful here at Embrace. Also, my co-worker Bryan Smith, who I have been with from day one, has helped mold me into the loan officer I am today. I am very grateful for the team I have.

MPA: What are the key issues facing mortgage originators today?