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APM highlights past black month

At APM, we believe that the easiest way to honor the heritage of our relationships with APM during the last month of Black History is by listening to and reading the stories they share.

Celebrating Black History Month

Meet Amanda Neal, Licensed Mortgage Processor at Golden Eagle Mortgage, NMLS# 1577053

Raising herself biracial, Amanda Neal felt blessed to enjoy the best elements of two cultures. Music, for example, was always present in her childhood home in Bay Space. Amanda’s dad, who is black, launched her into jazz, hip hop and R&B, while her mom, who is white, opened her ears to nation, rock and soft rock. You had been just as likely to listen to Tupac as you had been to Weapons N’ Roses.

amanda neal

Even today, music is at the center of family gatherings, which they call “features.” That’s the place where Amanda, her mother and her father, and her four younger siblings, along with an extended family, gather to eat, drink, laugh, and push each other to be the best they can be. . What they were never forced to do, Amanda notes, was “pick a look.” Instead, her mother and her father embraced their cultures and inspired their children to be true to themselves.

However, the family never shied away from the racial aspects, including the desire to be a black person in today’s world. Amanda’s education allows her to direct her buyers at Golden Eagle Mortgage, a subsidiary of APM, in the same way. She has been taught to treat everyone equally. For Amanda, that means keeping every shopper in sight and making sure they feel comfortable, heard and seen.

Although her father has a master’s degree and works for the CPA, education was not at the forefront of her childhood. Amanda is aware that this is often a widespread concern within the black neighborhood, so she focuses on education and outreach within her area. She strives to reach potential first generation householders and overcome the limits that prevent them from building wealth. Amanda continues to attend trainings and lessons that allow her to better serve her clients, no matter what walk of life they come from.

Meet Ron Bennett, APM Mortgage Officer—Seattle, Washington, NMLS# 57792

Celebrations are big at the Ron Bennett house. Although Kwanzaa and Juneteenth are at the top of his record, Ron’s favorite celebration is his mother’s birthday. She is the person he has liked the most, since she always made sure that he had everything she wanted. Her help led to a basketball scholarship to Seattle University, allowing Ron to become the first in his family to earn a college degree.

ron bennett

Her success impressed her mother into returning to high school, gaining only a few levels herself. This led Ron to pursue his MBA. Information like that is exactly what Ron shares each year when he and his family arrive in Sandusky, Ohio, his mother’s hometown, for their annual family reunion. Naturally, food is entry and heart, and there is no lack of experience there. Ron’s father was a cook in the Navy, although his brother was always the family cook. As soon as he handed over, Ron’s nephew, the son of his late brother, assumed that position.

Ron’s position as APM’s Mortgage Consultant in Maple Valley, Washington enabled him to secure a home for his two brothers, a home they had been able to hold on to even after one of his brothers had been handed over. That house is now part of his brother’s legacy, something Ron needs for all Africans. That’s why Ron makes a conscious effort to partner with real estate agents working in underserved black communities. He should focus on neighborhoods where there are problems, because these problems can become an alternative when residents clearly perceive and see the path to homeownership. Ron is so enthusiastic about this concern that he spends his free time educating real estate agents on how they can best serve these communities.

On the APM side, Ron appreciates how the company sees variety and looks for tactics to bring homeownership to the black community.

Meet Kaeci Carter, Mortgage Broker at Huge Valley Mortgage, a division of American Pacific Mortgage, NMLS# 2082189

From a very young age, Kaeci Carter had a fire inside of him to succeed…he just didn’t know what to do with it. Growing up in Fresno, California, Kaeci’s mother taught her valuable lessons, including the right way to deal with people. Fortunately, Kaeci was lucky to have two mentors in life. Her mom was the primary; She met her second while serving in the US Navy in 2008. This other mentor, though not in the navy, showed Kaeci that success was possible for black men like him. Before that, he never had anyone, inside or outside of his race, tell him the rules of success and wealth.

kaeci carter

Nowadays, Kaeci embraces the mindset that everything starts from within. That if you change your mind and subscribe to a different lifestyle, something is possible with hard work. As a Mortgage Counselor with APM’s Huge Valley Mortgage Department in Fresno, Kaeci strives to be a mentor to different members of the Black neighborhood looking to become homeowners.

Thanks in large part to her mother, Kaeci knows how to treat everyone who walks through the door equally. Part of which means that everyone leaves with an answer and step-by-step information to get there. Kaeci says her joy is palpable during these conferences, and she likes to see her buyers walk away with their heads held high, knowing there is a path to homeownership available to them.

Meet Anthony Booker, Mortgage Officer at LaSalle Mortgage Providers, a division of American Pacific Mortgage, NMLS#2260329

Anthony Booker sees his identity as not just multiracial, but multicultural. That’s because Anthony’s father, who is black, met his mother when he was stationed in his native Belgium. Although the two settled in San Diego, where Anthony was born, his military father was always proud to discuss his black heritage, while Anthony’s mother often spoke the Dutch dialect of Flemish when she spoke to Anthony’s family. her at home

Anthony's book

Anthony grew up idolizing his father, something he still does today. For Anthony, he was an exemplary black man: he always wanted to do the right thing and, as such, he was revered as a stand-up man. That moral man who taught Anthony the value of hard work also remained emotionally and mentally available, embracing everything you could ask of a father.

That’s why seeing different black men succeed like his father did is a real treat for Anthony. He doesn’t always feel like these stories are widely accessible, so when they are, they’re cause for joy.

Another thing that Anthony feels is not widely accessible is education and outreach to the black neighborhood about home ownership values. He sees this population as backward in that sense, but he’s sure this could change with some help from the real estate and mortgage communities. He would like to see more black people get their real estate licenses. As a Mortgage Mortgage Originator with LaSalle Mortgage Providers (an APM dba), Anthony conducts workshops for first-time homebuyers in underserved, predominantly African-American communities.

Anthony strongly believes that with just a little communication and understanding, Black families who have always rented or moved a lot can see the likelihood and value of homeownership. And that value is the generational wealth and generational stability created by proudly owning your own home.

Meet Vance McGhee, APM Department Supervisor—Atlanta, GA, NMLS #218607

A new year brings outdated traditions for Vance McGhee and his family. He and his two teenage children start each January 1 with a serving of black-eyed beans, kale and cornbread. It unites everyone on the road to success throughout the year, Vance says, and success is what he wants for his family and his buyers.

Growing up in rural North Carolina, Vance saw the effects of poverty and single-parent homes. This instilled an appreciation for his own mother and his father, who gave their lives for him. The teachings he learned from them, as well as from his Baptist church, kept Vance humble, empathetic, and compassionate toward the conditions of others.

Today, Vance sees himself as an educator within minority communities, many of whom are wary of large national institutions. He needs them to know that when the information comes from him, they will believe it. Vance also makes sure his buyers know he’s there for them long after his mortgage has closed, that he’s their ally in case of trouble. All they have to do is pick up the cell phone.

Having been in the mortgage industry since 1989, Vance is thoroughly pleased to see how diverse the industry has become, but believes there is additional work to be done. At APM, Vance especially appreciates the diverse subscription workers and hopes more companies will take related initiatives. He points out that it’s hard to make a case for variety if his organization isn’t going to do it again with a workforce that reflects society.

Considered one of Vance’s favorite topics about APM is the flexibility for mortgage brokers to offer new down payment assistance options to the company. The more applications that can put people on the path to homeownership, the greater it will be. Vance is also enthusiastic about using appraisers who stay within a home’s neighborhood, noting that too often an appraiser who has to travel 50 miles or more won’t know the neighborhood well enough to make an accurate appraisal.

Vance is a true advocate for homeownership among minority communities, and we couldn’t be more proud to have him as part of the APM home.

If you would like to learn more about APM’s dedication to diversity and inclusion, go here to review our mission and strategy.


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