Dennis Hedlund, President & Founder

As a mortgage industry veteran with a background in mathematics and predictive modeling, Dennis founded iEmergent on the principle that anticipating change with forward-looking intelligence was essential to an organization’s successful future.

After more than a decade working for some of the mortgage industry’s largest organizations—leading multiple departments and high-level strategic projects—Dennis recognized patterns in the behavior of individual mortgage markets that suggested a method for quantifying and forecasting future trends. He set out to model and quantify his hypothesis, and iEmergent was born. He built iEmergent into a thriving mortgage lending consultancy, supported by proprietary forecast data.

Today, Dennis provides vision to iEmergent and shapes the forecasting methodology. His expertise ensures that iEmergent continues to evolve along new challenges and trends in the industry.

Career Highlights

  • Wells Fargo Home Mortgage (EVP: Business Change and Strategy)
  • Prudential Home Mortgage (EVP: Servicing, Direct Consumer Business, Call Center Operations)
  • More than ten years of experience in telecommunications and network design
  • Communications Specialist in the United States Air Force

Few know that he was a painter, a published poet, and a high school basketball and football coach before his executive career began. He resides in Des Moines, Iowa, with his wife.

Laird Nossuli, iEmergent CEOLaird Hedlund Nossuli, CEO

Laird is at the helm of iEmergent, playing several different roles on a daily basis. In addition to leading strategy and development of iEmergent’s Mortgage MarketSmart application, Laird guides business strategy, manages sales, and supports client fulfillment.

After graduating from Swarthmore College, Laird was a member of iEmergent’s original team. In 2002, she left the company to earn a master’s degree from the University of Michigan in community development, nonprofit management, and organizational strategy. In 2006, she was serving as the director of administration and resources at Orr Associates, Inc, (OAI) when she decided to help move iEmergent forward once again. In the years since, she has become a disciple of iEmergent’s approach to market intelligence and a student of the mortgage industry.

Laird's world outside of the office is closely managed by her two young children—Julien and Lina. She loves running, dressage, gardening, and playing outside. 

Bernard Nossuli, iEmergent COOBernard Nossuli, COO

Bernard manages finances and operations at iEmergent, working closely with our analytics team and a select group of clients to ensure that they are leveraging our data and Mortgage MarketSmart effectively.

Also a member of the original iEmergent team, Bernard developed many of iEmergent’s original forecasting models and analytical tools. His professional experience spans multiple industries, including Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, multiple years in the consulting practice at PriceWaterhouse Coopers, and seven years in finance at DuPont-Pioneer. Now he’s back at iEmergent, leveraging his management experience, an MBA from Georgetown, a Project Management Professional (PMP) designation, and his Six-Sigma Green Belt.

Like Laird, Bernard is also closely managed at home by his children, Julien and Lina. In his free time, he works toward a moonlighting career in stand-up comedy.

fennFenn Meents, Chief Growth Officer

Fenn leads the growth strategy at iEmergent with a keen focus on developing and executing strategic business development initiatives positioning iEmergent at the forefront of forecasting and analytics firms for the banking and lending industries.

With more than 13 years’ experience in the mortgage industry, Fenn has a diverse background spanning both sales and operational leadership roles. Although Fenn is the newest member of the Executive Team, he is no stranger to iEmergent. In his prior role at Primary Capital Mortgage, Fenn utilized and championed the Mortgage Market Smart tool to inform the organization’s senior leadership on market selection and hiring decisions to name a few. In short, it was his passion for iEmergent’s technology and forecasting methodology that led him to join the team shortly after receiving his MBA from The University of Georgia. 

Fenn’s office is in Atlanta where he lives with his wife, Dianna, and their rambunctious 4-year-old son Holden. In his free time, Fenn loves to cook, go for trail runs by the river, and go on road trips with his family.


Rachel Hedlund, Director of Analytics

Although she works behind the scenes, Rachel’s role as Director of Analytics is essential to the development of iEmergent’s forecasts. Over the past eight years, Rachel and Dennis have not only improved the accuracy and granularity of the forecasts, but have broadened the scope of market segments that iEmergent offers.

Following her graduation from the University of Iowa School of Law in 2009, iEmergent asked her to temporarily put her legal career on hold to help build the analytics side of the organization. In addition, her education and interest in the legal and compliance issues facing the housing industry helps iEmergent understand the ramifications of upcoming changes on its forecasts and its clients.

Rachel’s office is in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she lives with her fellow attorney husband, David, and their dog Mia.

Mark Watson, Industry Advisor

Mark has spent the last 20 years doing market and competitive analysis with major mortgage lenders. In fact, he was even an early iEmergent client. After earning his MBA from Claremont Graduate School, Mark joined Countrywide Financial Corp and soon evolved into a market research specialist. He was an early adopter of geographic information systems (GIS) software which was used extensively in Countrywide's mid-90's retail network expansion. Moreover, he was heavily involved in mortgage market forecasting at both Countrywide and Bank of America. His work encompassed strategic planning, product development, servicing risk analysis, business intelligence (BI) tool development, and many other facets of mortgage lending and analysis.

Mark has seen a lot of lenders come and go in the booms and busts of the past two decades. With his front-row seat on the mortgage industry rollercoaster, Mark brings a wealth of experience and perspective to the iEmergent team.

Kyle DeSmith, Director of Business Development

Kyle currently serves as our Director of Business Development, evaluating new opportunities and building strategic relationships.

After graduating from Bradley University in Actuarial Science, Kyle started working for John Deere where he created predictive models and forecasts for their financial services division.  He then earned his MBA from Indiana University focusing on strategic management.  In his current role at John Deere, he manages $400M balances with 150 customers.

Kyle joined the iEmergent team in 2009 as an advisor, managing the data environment while providing analytical and statistical support.

Kyle is heavily involved in the Des Moines community, currently serving on the Board of Directors for Big Brothers and Big Sister of Central Iowa. He also serves on the Employer Advisory Board at Bradley University.

He spends his free time helping his wife Layodesi chase around their sons, Drayven and Cayson. He also freelances as a Fantasy Football guru and is a devout San Francisco 49ers Fan.

Megan Horn, iEmergentMegan Horn, Director of Communications

A marketer by education, Megan has enjoyed learning and navigating the mortgage banking industry. Her experience with marketing data and analytics transferred easily into the world of mortgage opportunity forecasting.

She was schooled in traditional marketing and communications at the University of Northern Iowa, and learned digital marketing first-hand by developing campaigns when digital media was still the new kid on the block.

Despite statistical trends, she’s a millennial with a home and a mortgage whose household is run by Violet, an 11-year-old terrier with a mohawk. She enjoys kickboxing, reading, wine, traveling, and musicals.

Chris RouwChris Rouw, Lead Developer

Chris is the lead technical guy behind the Mortgage MarketSmart application. He works with Laird to map out features and functionality that add value for iEmergent clients and Mortgage MarketSmart users, and implements them in the application.

Chris is an Iowa Hawkeyes fan, a coffee connoisseur, and an avid runner—a skill he uses to keep up with his three boys.