"I am the American dream."
As a first-generation Hispanic, I was born into a hardworking family of female role models. My mother, a proud Mexican immigrant, tirelessly cleaned real estate offices until she eventually owned her own cleaning business. I am also inspired by my grandmother, a single mother who struggled but persevered, to support her own family in Tijuana, Mexico.
At age 16, I took the lessons learned from my family into the workforce with an entry-level clerical position at TransUnion Credit. From there, I landed a job at a prominent mortgage company, where I would rise through the ranks from a clerical loan opener to branch manager and eventually to assistant vice president. Later, I was chosen to lead the operations unit of an independent broker shop—all the while, pursuing the underserved Spanish-speaking markets well before they were a popular and sought-after demographic.
Living by the credo "with risk comes reward," I and my husband, Rick Arvielo, launched our own mortgage company in 2003 – New American Funding. In the years since, we've built the company into one of the largest independent mortgage bankers in the US today.
As the single largest Hispanic woman-owned private mortgage company in the nation, our company has made Inc. 5000’s list of Fastest Growing Companies in America seven times. We have also been recognized as one of the best workplaces in the nation for women and millennials by FORTUNE and Great Place to Work®.
Today, I manage the operations and sales for New American Funding’s headquarters and continue to originate and book millions in home loans each month. I currently oversee about 3,490 employees, 55% who are women, 40% who are millennials, and 42% who are minorities, many of whom serve in key positions within the company.
To ensure that the underserved are now served, I launched the company’s Latino Focus and New American Dream initiatives to improve the home lending experiences of Latino and Black homebuyers, respectively. Our company consistently outperforms the nation’s largest banks when it comes to lending to these groups.
I make it a point to champion my sales teams and give back as a mentor to help my employees grow their skill sets and careers. To this end, I have implemented two mentorship programs. "If You Want to Grow, We Want to Know" allows employees to openly share their goals and aspirations for potential advancement in the company. Meanwhile, my quarterly mentorship program, "Thrive and Lead," provides New American Funding employees and external mortgage professionals intensive mentoring for a three-month period.
My expertise and influence in the industry extend to numerous committees, including for the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Affordable Homeownership Advisory Council and MBA Residential Board of Governors.
I am also a former member of the Fannie Mae Affordable Housing Advisory Council and both Freddie Mac’s Community Lender Advisory Board and Affordable Housing Council. I also served as a member of the Housing Counseling Federal Advisory Committee, a group that advises the Department of Housing and Urban Development on ways to build sustainable homeownership.
Outside the office and into the community, I am serving a three-year term on the Harvard Kennedy School Board. Additionally, I serve on the Board of Directors for Century Communities and Western Alliance Bancorporation. I am also a member of the Latino Donor Collaborative Board and am a member of the Executive Board of Big Brothers and Sisters (BBBS) Orange County.
I also previously served on the National Park Foundation Board of Directors, where I was instrumental in the creation of the LatinX Project to symbolize the Latino culture in America throughout our parks.
I have been fortunate enough to be the recipient of numerous professional accolades and was recognized in 2016 by Ernst and Young as an EY Entrepreneur of The Year® for Orange County. I am also deeply honored to have won the 2022 Stevie® American Business Awards® Lifetime Achievement Award and the 2016 Latinos de Hoy Business Award.
NBC Latino aired a feature profile highlighting my life. In January 2019, I was a guest speaker at Gary Vaynerchuk's Agent 2021 conference. In addition, I have given many keynote addresses for mortgage events across the nation and have made frequent visits to Washington, D.C over the years to lobby on behalf of the mortgage industry and homeowners.
I lead by example, with a passion to shape both New American Funding and the housing industry.