Austin, Tex.-based multi-channel lender Open Mortgage announced on Monday that it has appointed Andrea Easter to be the company’s first chief compliance officer, a newly-created position that will oversee all risk-related functions within the company including directing the development and implementation of policies and procedures regarding state and federal regulations and agency requirements.
In her new role, Easter will collaborate with the lender’s various departments to monitor and assess compliance practices, and will ensure that any issues which arise are investigated and resolved. She will also create an annual risk assessment and undertake internal and third-party audits and investigations. She will also monitor any developments related to existing, new and pending laws and regulations that affect the mortgage industry, and will maintain relationships with industry leaders and regulators at the state and federal levels.
Easter will report directly to Open Mortgage’s recently-appointed President Joe Stephenson and will hold a fiduciary duty to the Board of Directors, according to a company announcement. When asked if Easter’s responsibilities will interact with the company’s reverse mortgage division, a representative indicated that all channels — including reverse mortgages — will fall under her purview.
“As Open Mortgage continues to experience unprecedented growth, it’s vital that we diligently safeguard both the firm and our clients with a company-wide compliance approach centered around our brand values,” Stephenson said of the appointment. “Andrea is a proven leader in the financial services industry and her extensive expertise will further enable an effective risk and control environment that can scale as the company grows.”
Easter most recently worked as deputy chief compliance officer at Celebrity Home Loans based in Raleigh, N.C., holding prior positions under the North Carolina Commissioner of Banks, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, Daylight Discount Mortgage Corporation and at Headway Workforce Solutions for Genworth Financial Mortgage Insurance.
She earned a B.A. in English and professional writing at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and has also completed various training programs from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Conference of State Bank Supervisors and North Carolina Bankers Association.
Open Mortgage has been making several new appointments since late last year. Stephenson was named as the company’s first president in December, allowing the company’s CEO Scott Gordon to pursue other growth-related activities beyond day-to-day management, the company said at the time. RMD interviewed Stephenson in January about the company’s reverse mortgage priorities in 2022.
The following month, the company added Scott Harkless to the newly-created position of chief revenue officer. According to Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) endorsement data compiled by Reverse Market Insight (RMI), Open Mortgage is the seventh-largest reverse mortgage lender in the nation with 2,322 loans over the 12-month period ending in March, 2022.