Movement Mortgage CEO Casey Crawford has been named one of HousingWire’s 2017 Vanguard award winners for his exceptional leadership at the helm of one of the nation’s fastest-growing mortgage lenders.
Crawford is one of 45 business leaders and founders praised for taking their companies to new heights by expanding products, services and profits. “Our Vanguard winners represent an incredible cross section of the industry — the cream of the crop in lending, servicing, investing and real estate,” says Sarah Wheeler, editor of HousingWire Magazine.
The Vanguard award recognizes leaders for their work over the past year. It comes at a time Movement is poised to originate more than $13 billion in residential mortgages this year. Under Crawford’s leadership, the company’s been ranked as one of the nation’s top mortgage lenders and continues to reinvest millions of dollars in communities through its nonprofit foundation. In 2017, those investments included the opening of the $12 million Movement School, a public charter school for the underserved urban poor in Charlotte, N.C.
Crawford’s influence also extends to the company’s technology and innovation. Movement funded nearly half of its loans through the Easy App, an online digital mortgage application, in 2017. It also hired former IBM executive Henry Santos to lead Movement’s technology strategy as its new chief information officer.
Also joining Movement’s executive team this year was Michelle Donnelly, a Harvard Business School alum and former senior-level executive at Eli Lilly and Company tasked with steering Movement’s strategic development as chief commercial officer.
Growth is central to Movement’s strategic goals but it doesn’t come at the expense of the heart and faith it was founded on. That’s why Crawford hired Chief Pastoral Officer Stephen Phelan to ensure that as Movement grows it keeps God, family and community among its top priorities.
Crawford credits God for Movement’s success. “I want my life to be about eternal impact,” Crawford said recently in a radio interview. “I felt God telling me, ‘You need to start this business but it needs to be about growing my kingdom, not yours.’”
He also gives kudos to the lessons he learned from his father, who owned a hardware store in inner city Washington, D.C.
“He lived and worked every day with what became the inspiration for our mission,” Crawford says. “His desire to love and value customers, community and employees is what drives Movement and myself today.”