New MBA President & CEO Bob Broeksmit, CMB Hits Ground Running

It’s been a busy two weeks for Robert Broeksmit, CMB, new President and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Daily meetings; dozens of introductions; dozens more phone calls. August usually moves at a less hectic pace in Washington; for Broeksmit, who began at MBA on Aug. 20, it provided the opportunity to hit the ground running.

RobertBroeksmit“It’s been helpful for me to get acclimated during a period when Washington is usually quiet,” Broeksmit tells MBA NewsLink in his office at MBA headquarters. “Having two weeks to meet with the MBA senior management team, to understand more deeply issues that are important to the membership and spending time with Board members when the pace is a little slower has been a very positive way to get started. Today, I’m in mid-stride; I’ve already gotten my sea legs. And with the MBA Annual Convention just six weeks away [Oct. 14-17 in Washington], I feel like I’ve gotten a good head start.”

Broeksmit took over from David Stevens, CMB, who announced his planned retirement about a year ago (he remains with MBA in an advisory capacity until Sept. 30). He came to MBA with more than 33 years of industry experience, most recently as president and chief operating officer of Treliant, a Washington-based financial services consulting firm (and MBA member). Previously, he served as president of B.F. Saul Mortgage Co.; as executive vice president of B.F. Saul parent company Chevy Chase Bank; and as vice president of direct consumer marketing and sales for Prudential Home Mortgage.

Broeksmit has also been active with MBA in a volunteer capacity for more than a decade. He earned his Certified Mortgage Banker (CMB) designation from CampusMBA (now MBA Education) in 2006 and has served as a member and Chairman of the MBA Residential Board of Governors (RESBOG) and a term on the MBA Board of Directors, as well as on several policy committees. He has also been active with the American Bankers Association, serving a term as Chairman of its Mortgage Markets Committee.

In one of his first actions, Broeksmit met with MBA staff–and came away feeling energized.

“I’m really gratified with how great a state the Association is in and how committed, capable and enthusiastic the staff is about serving our industry and membership and caring so deeply about how they do their work,” Broeksmit said. “I feel I’m walking into a healthy organization with committed and high-performing employees.”

Broeksmit also began increasing his profile in Washington. Last week, for example, he met with Michael Bright, the new President of Ginnie Mae, along with key Ginnie Mae and HUD senior managers.

“I told our staff afterward it was a great exchange of information and perspective with key people who are important to our industry,” he said. “What I felt in the room was a mutual respect and common base to advance our issues with Ginnie Mae–a willingness to work cooperatively to make the Ginnie Mae programs stronger.”

Broeksmit has also met with senior leadership of the government-sponsored enterprises, as well as with representatives of leading consumer advocacy groups, such as Michael Calhoun of the Center for Responsible Lending. Coming up, he has meetings with key MBA commercial and multifamily members, members of Congress and the Trump Administration, as well as other industry trade associations.

As President and CEO, Broeksmit also serves on numerous MBA committees and was recently elected to the board of the MBA Opens Doors Foundation, which provides mortgage and rental assistance payment grants to parents and guardians caring for a critically ill or injured child, allowing them to take unpaid leave from work without jeopardizing their homes.

“I attended my first meeting last week,” Broeksmit said. “I’m very impressed with the tremendous progress ODF made in the past few years, and we are very optimistic about its future growth. It’s a very effective example of MBA supporting a cause that’s important to what we do.”

While many MBA members will get to see Broeksmit at the upcoming MBA Annual Convention & Expo, his “official” debut will take place later this month, at the MBA Regulatory Compliance on Sept. 17. He said he is looking forward to meeting with MBA members and discussing issues important to them and to the industry.

Broeksmit observed during the interview process (conducted by a 13-member MBA committee led by former MBA Chairman Rodrigo Lopez, CMB), one aspect of the position description that appealed to him was that MBA wanted a “servant leader.”

“I thought it was really apt for a member-driven organization like MBA,” Broeksmit said. “What that means to me is that I have to think about and represent the needs and wishes of the members. I know I still have to be a leader–it’s just not ‘servant’–but I have to understand all the goals and aspirations of our members. And that involves some humility; and it involves simultaneously being self-confident enough to be a good leader. And I enjoy that tension, that mix. And that’s something I bring to the table.”