The newly formed Association of Independent Mortgage Experts announced it grew its leadership team with the addition of a senior vice president of legislative and government affairs.

AIME, which was founded by the same people who started BRAWL, Brokers Rallying Against Whole-tail Lenders, announced former National Association of Mortgage Brokers President John Councilman joined its leadership team.

Councilman served as NAMB president from 2014 to 2015, and was a founding member of Maryland’s state association.

“Filling out these leadership positions is a major initial step in fortifying AIME as a strong, high-powered organization for independent mortgage professionals,” AIME founder Anthony Casa said. 

“We're not a fledgling startup,” Casa said. “AIME has some of the top legal and compliance minds from some of the biggest players in the wholesale industry, and will shine as the premier membership organization for mortgage experts.”

This move is perhaps unexpected as earlier this year, Casa began a petition for the removal of current NAMB president John Stevens. In fact, the creation of AIME was due, in part, to NAMB’s lack of support for the BRAWL movement, and Casa’s perceived lack of support from NAMB for brokers in general.

“There will be no confusion about the association’s agenda, in terms of ‘is it pro-broker or pro-banker?’” Casa said previously about AIME. “The purpose of AIME is to fight solely for independent mortgage professionals in as biased a way as possible.”

AIME also established its compliance and regulatory council and selected seven people to serve as members of the council. It will strive to guide AIME across industry topics and initiatives, as well as assist AIME members with a range of pertinent issues and compliance-related topics.

Here are the council's seven appointees:

Michael Barone, Abrams Garfinkel Margolis Bergson managing partner

Matthew Cronin, Flagstar Bank vice president of regulatory compliance

Ronald Gapp, PRMG general counsel and compliance officer

G. Bradley Hargrave, Medlin & Hargrave shareholder

Jeffrey Midbo, United Wholesale Mortgage senior vice president, deputy general counsel and chief compliance officer

Bonnie Nachamie, Bonnie S. Nachamie partner

Wayne Watkinson, Offit Kurman principal

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