First Arizona Savings Federal Savings Bank is creating a residential mortgage origination platform, focused on opportunities in the Western US, with plans to expand nationally. Jeff Walton, the former CEO of Bear Stearns Residential Mortgage and Greg Russell, formerly a managing director of Hudson Advisors, the asset management operation for Lone Star Funds will head National Residential Mortgage, headquartered in Phoenix. Walton’s former executive team from Bear Stearns joins him at the new group, as well as Steve Atwood, a former executive at National City Mortgage, who will direct production activities for National Residential Mortgage. Russell will serve in an advisory role to the new platform. “In launching a new platform, it is imperative to have an experienced Executive Team that has been together for many years with a proven track record of building and running successful mortgage operations,” said Michael Nelson, First Arizona Savings president and CEO. Write to Austin Kilgore.