First American Financial Corp. announced the appointment of Paul Hurst as chief innovation officer. Hurst will be responsible for identifying opportunities to innovate through strategic venture investments, partnerships, and mergers and acquisitions. He will continue to serve as the managing director of the company’s venture investing arm. He holds a doctoral degree from the University of Cambridge as well as master’s and undergraduate degrees in economics and pharmacology.
Sprout Mortgage announced two promotions to senior sales positions in the western U.S. Dean Ayres was promoted to Western regional vice president and Scott Wood was named Western regional manager. Wood replaces and now reports to Ayres, and both are based in the company’s Irvine, California, office. In his new role, Ayres will focus on recruiting, mentoring and growing Sprout’s third-party originator sales teams in the West. A five-year Sprout veteran, he has nearly 20 years of mortgage lending and leadership experience across the inside-sales and retail channels, spanning both non-QM and traditional products. He holds a bachelor’s degree from California State University at Long Beach. Wood will focus on coaching a growing team of account executives to serve wholesale brokers and correspondent lenders. Wood has been with Sprout for more than three years and previously served as an account executive. He brings more than 20 years of mortgage lending and management experience across non-QM and QM products.
Union Home Mortgage (UHM) announced the hiring of Mark Moates as a loan officer in the greater Birmingham, Alabama, region. In this role, Moates will produce and originate loans for homebuyers. Prior to joining UHM, he served as a loan officer at organizations including TJC Mortgage Inc. and FirstBank. Moates received his bachelor’s degree from Auburn University.
Enact Holdings appointed Michael A. Bless to the company’s board of directors, which is now comprised of 11 members. Prior to joining the Enact board, Bless served as Century Aluminum Co.’s president & CEO from November 2011 to July 2021, and as a member of its board of directors from December 2012 to July 2021. In addition, Bless also served as the chief financial officer for Century from 2006 to 2011. Prior to joining Century, Bless also served in various leadership positions, including as chief financial officer of Maxtor Corp. and Rockwell Automation Inc. Since 2017, Bless has served as an independent director of CNA Financial Corp., where he is the chair of the compensation committee.
GoPrime Mortgage promoted Kevin Neely to director of national sales. Previously, Neely was the company’s East Coast sales manager.
FormFree appointed Patrick Rutherford, former finance executive at Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), as CFO. In his new role at FormFree, Rutherford will lead the organization’s finance, accounting and compliance functions. Prior to joining ICE, Rutherford served as a finance leader at The Home Depot. Rutherford earned his bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Georgia and his master’s degree in business administration from Carnegie Mellon University.
Merchants Bank of Indiana announced the hiring of Chris Trimbach as vice president and business banker. Trimbach will be based out of the Merchants Bank headquarters in Carmel, Indiana. He brings more than 10 years of experience to his new role at Merchants Bank, having most recently served as managing director at CIBC Bank USA in Chicago. Trimbach holds a bachelor’s in business administration from the University of Cincinnati.