Mortgage Bankers Association National President 1971
Mr. Spelman was born and raised in Illinois and like many entered the industry during the depression. He explained once that he had been on someone's payroll since he was 11 years old. His father died when he was 14 and he told the story of a strong, Scott Irish, quiet and efficient mother that held the family of seven children together in those desperate times. In deciding on a career he thought his best opportunity would be in the field of shelter because there was always a need: thus began his real estate career.
His first real estate job began in Chicago in property management, leasing and development of apartment buildings. His early years were also spent as a construction superintendent on a number of building projects throughout Illinois and Michigan.
In the early days of the depression many of the life insurance companies were recruiting field representatives. He joined the Western and Southern life insurance Company of Cincinnati in the company’s real estate department. In that capacity he supervised the rehabilitation and management of properties as well as the liquidation of properties acquired through foreclosure. He later headed the real estate department for Western and Southern life until 1954 when he seized the opportunity to come to Denver as Vice President and manager of the Western Securities Company’s Denver office. One year later he was elected a director and eight years later, president of the firm.
A virtual requirement of the time for most real estate officers of life insurance companies was to become a member of the American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers (MAI). Ev as he was called by his peers became a member in1954.
In the community, he was president of the Colorado Mortgage Bankers Association, president of the Colorado Chapter of the Appraisal Institute, Denver Board of Realtors and The Denver Chamber of Commerce. At MBA he was a frequent lecturer at the School of Mortgage Banking and Chaired the MBA’s Ethics and Standards of Practice Committee.
In Denver financial circles Mr. Spelman was affectionately known as “Mr. Mortgage Banker”.