The founding and evolution of iEmergent is an interesting story. What began as a family-run, consulting firm-turned-think-tank is now one of the industry’s most innovative providers, growing our client list rapidly as lenders discover the value of data and diversity.
Early on in iEmergent’s history, founder Dennis Hedlund developed the models for our forecasts and supported clients with the help of his wife, Paula, and his daughters, Laird and Rachel. As iEmergent evolved, the family continued to build their industry knowledge and their dedication to the firm’s vision.
We have built upon the foundation Dennis laid—continuing our unique bottom-up forecasting methodology—and extended our focus on homeownership diversity.
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.
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.
Mark leads the forecasting program at iEmergent and ensures that our data and analytics remain relevant to the current and future lending environments. 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.