By Kevin Strahm, Mortgage Loan Officer, Core Bank
The mortgage banking world has been a part of me since 2001. I was working as a golf professional, and a member pulled me aside after hearing I was looking to make a career change, and said I needed to work for him. Being a young, naive individual, I thought it sounded like a great career!
I look back and realize how fortunate I was to work for First Horizon in 2001. They trained me very slowly, and didn’t pressure me to produce right away. I learned from a couple seasoned loan officers the right way to originate home loans, and how to conduct business with referral partners. My favorite part about learning was meeting new people and realizing that my relationships were the key to my future success in the business.
Fast forward to 2013, and my career had been a success. But I had just found out that my four year old son was diagnosed with stage IV neuroblastoma, which is an aggressive form of pediatric cancer. Later that year, I resigned from my bank position, as treatment for his cancer took us to New York. Thankfully, my son is 9 years old today, and has been cancer free since September of 2013.
I was absent in the mortgage banking scene from 2013-2016, as I had taken a role as a technical recruiter, which gave me the ability to work remotely. I wasn’t sure if I would ever make it back to the mortgage banking world, but in 2017 a friend asked me to join their team, and I will forever be grateful for that opportunity. I realized that I had to do something different this time, but what would that be?
Most mortgage bankers solicit real estate agents, financial planners, divorce attorneys, etc., but how was I going to be different? I realized I had to use my opportunity to do something greater than just living life day in and day out. I decided I wanted to donate some of my revenue to pediatric cancer research.
In 2017, I was able to raise over $3,000 for pediatric cancer research. Braden’s Hope for Childhood Cancer is who I chose to support, as 97% of their revenue goes to research. They’ve been with us throughout the journey with our son, so I really wanted to partner with them. I love my referral partners for being so passionate and supportive of me on this mission.
My career passion is making my clients enjoy the home buying process, but my life passion is doing what I love, to do something even greater for families and their kids that need it most.