The future of the mortgage industry is in good hands. 

In HousingWire’s inaugural Rising Stars program, our editors sought to recognize young industry professionals who are already leading in their respective fields. Nominations were accepted for anyone under 40 leading in the housing finance space — in lending, servicing, investing or real estate. Our awards don’t just recognize future potential , although all of our winners have that to spare. We wanted to spotlight those who have already made their mark by starting new businesses, helping to run major corporations, or innovating new systems to move markets forward.

The response we received to the award program was phenomenal.

The number of young leaders in our industry was surprising even to us, and the extent of their accomplishments was humbling. Bank manager at 20? That’s Michael Tedesco at Appraisal Nation. Vice president of correspondent operations at 26? Meet AJ George at CMG Financial. What about helping to develop and implement a component services division to support an emerging asset class? That would be Laura Ferris at Green River Capital, featured on our cover.

It quickly became a very competitive race, with nominations from across our industry. Our editorial staff combed through the submissions and in the end decided on 20 young leaders who exemplified Rising Stars. 

We’ve profiled these 20 leaders with stats on what they’ve accomplished, but we were also interested in what they attributed their success to. We asked them to tell us what habit helped them succeed, or what they would tell a younger version of themselves, or what they had to overcome. We also did a longer profile on four Rising Stars with especially interesting stories. 

For HousingWire’s Rising Stars, this is only the beginning of amazing things to come.

This year's luminaries:

Each luminary in our 2014 Rising Stars program will receive a special recognition package, including a customized (and gorgeous!) lead crystal desk display. Congratulations to this year's winners, and thank you to all who applied for this special recognition!