Meet the Additions to the Wholesale Lending Division | Equity Prime Mortgage

Meet the Team!

ATLANTA – March 7, 2016 – A leader in the residential mortgage industry, Equity Prime Mortgage whose operations extend to more than 45 states, has expanded it’s Wholesale Lending Division by hiring nine new sales employees since the beginning of 2016.  

“Over the last couple of months we have seen a lot of growth from our teams, particularly our TPO Team. Our new Account Executives have hit the ground running and it’s great to see them expanding Equity’s presence in the wholesale market,” said Jessica Barron, Director of HR.

Meet the New additions to the Wholesale Lending Team:

Lee Ann Casanova, Regional Sales Manager

Over 20 years of experience in the mortgage industry starting as a loan officer and becoming a owner of a mortgage banking company moving on to wholesale lending in the 90's.   Throughout her career she has been responsible for the build out of new territories for Fortune 500 companies on the TPO side overseeing both sales and operations along with heading up three complete start up TPO lending platforms.  Casanova currently helps oversee the day to day management of TPO sales staff though out the US for Equity Prime.

Craig Chapman, Regional Sales Manager

Chapman brings  more than 20 years of lending industry experience and has held senior executive management positions with some of the leading mortgage firms in the country. Previously, Chapman assisted with the formation of 1st Commonwealth Bank of Virginia, a de novo bank based in Arlington, Va. As managing director of the bank’s mortgage division, Chapman was instrumental in the bank’s rapid growth, propelling it to profitability in less than 18 months.

Earlier in his career, as national sales director for First National Bank of Arizona (FNBA), Chapman led the initial development and management of a team of more than 300 sales professionals, successfully growing the FNBA’s eastern division from its startup phase to $7 billion in annual production. Prior to joining FNBA, Chapman held several managerial positions at GreenPoint Financial, where as SVP, director of correspondent Eastern U.S., he was responsible for growing the business by 200 percent in less than one year.

In addition to exceptional leadership skills and a proven track record for high-volume growth, Chapman possesses the entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to customer service.

Cathy Castle, Account Executive

Cathy Castle has an extensive background in the mortgage industry with a tenure in excess of ten years starting out her career and a loan officer on the retail side of our industry and transitioning into wholesale in the late 90s.   During Castle's career in wholesale, as an Account Executive, she has been taxed with introducing new companies into the Southeast Region of the country and has won several awards though out her career for "Top Performer" and "Highest Pull Thru".  

Thomas Goguen, Account Executive

Prior to accepting a position at Equity Prime Mortgage, Tom worked in Tampa from 2012-2016 as a Manager at Clayton as Audit Manager reviewing groups of loans for disclosure and appraisal quality prior to secondary market purchases.

From 2009  - 2012 Tom worked at Freddie Mac as a Loss mitigation Team Lead that worked with banks and servicer during the recession home crisis. He lead his team throughout the country, meeting with local congressmen and state official, and also assisted at non-profit events established by the states, non-profits (like NACA) and the federal government (HAS).

From 1996 to 2009 he established himself as a successful Account Executive for American Brokers Conduits, and American Home. The ability to greatly increase production and grow territories through presentations and Loan Officer trainings set the tone for this time. For this reason at this time  he also learned to underwrite to expand  to operation’s management and add value to his business partners, this resulted to in promotions to sales and operations management at various positions.

As Director of Fund Raising for Two  Brothers from 1998 – 2012 we purchased a safe 3 story building  for volunteers’ and local students. This established a safe place in the Rio Furvillas for children to be safe and learn. Many of our great young people went on to college and it also was a great place for US college students to help the poor people on Rio’s hillside.

Ron Holland, Account Executive

Ron Holland has over twenty-five years’ experience in the mortgage business, both in wholesale account management and loan originations.  He treats his clients the way he wants to be treated when he was a mortgage broker. Holland is very responsive to voicemails and email questions. He stays on top of guideline changes so he may give accurate up-to-date answers and recommendations on scenario questions.  Holland has achieved President's Club level many times throughout his career.  His inspiration comes from his wife and two teenage sons. 

Sara Bjellos-Hood, Account Executive

Sara brings 20 years of experience in the mortgage industry to Equity Prime Mortgage. She began her career in 1994 as a Processor, and eventually worked her way into an Underwriting position. In 2000, Sara transitioned into the retail channel as a Loan Originator. She successfully originated all types of mortgages from 2000-2005. She received numerous volume-based awards, and was consistently recognized as a top producer and President's Club award winner. In 2005, Sara transitioned from Retail to an Account Executive position within the Third Party Origination platform. In this capacity, she has successfully worked within both the Correspondent and Wholesale channels. She has consistently been recognized as a top producer, and has been awarded both President's Club and Chairmans Club honors.

Gianna Izzo-Stringer, Account Executive

Gianna Izzo-Stringer has been in the mortgage industry for over 20 years with extensive tenure as an Account Executive.  During this time  she has worked with banks, mortgage bankers and brokers on a regional and national level.  Gianna has developed and maintain strong relationships with both customers and operations staff to help facilitate transactions and improve client services.

Achievements include the Silver Star award at Chase for Customer Service, has been nominated for Wholesale Support Person of the year by the Illinois Association of Mortgage Brokers and her peers and has been nominated numerous times as Wholesale Account Executive of the year by the Illinois Association of Mortgage Brokers and her peers.

Greg Kewin, Account Executive

Greg Kewin has been in the mortgage industry for over 25 years. His experience includes retail, wholesale, correspondent and non-delegated.

Cynthia Perkins, Account Executive

Cynthia Perkins has been in the mortgage industry for over 17 years with extensive tenure as a retail Loan Officer and a Wholesale Account Executive.  During this time  she has worked with community banks, mortgage bankers and brokers.   Cynthia has fostered substantial relationships with both customers and internal staff to help facilitate seamless transactions, improve client services, thereby increasing organizational footprint. Achievements include President’s Circle (Chase Home Loans) and Leader’s Board (NovaStar, INC).


Founded at the height of the mortgage crisis in 2008, Equity Prime Mortgage has grown to become one of the leading mortgage lenders in the U.S., operating 17 branch locations across the nation. With a solid team of experienced professionals, Equity Prime continues to expand at a rapid rate.

“It is very exciting where we are headed. We know our business is about relationships and the relationships we make are what make us successful. We couldn’t be more thrilled about our growth,” said President, Eddy Perez.

About Equity Prime Mortgage

Headquartered in Atlanta, Ga., Equity Prime Mortgage provides an array of lending resources when making Conventional, FHA, VA, Jumbo, Reverse and USDA loans as well as a trusted Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Seller/Servicer. With a dedicated staff of highly experienced professionals, Equity Prime provides exceptional pricing for thousands of clients annually, without compromising follow through and customer service. For more information about Equity Prime visit us online at



Gian Russo, Sr. VP of TPO

Equity Prime Mortgage

(877) 255-3554