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Rock N’ Roll with us at the 45th Annual CMLA Convention!
Vail Marriott Mountain Resort • August 8 - 10, 2018
Speakers N’ Topics
We’ve gathered unique speakers with passionate topics for the 45th Annual CMLA Convention. You’ll meet Polly Letofsky, the first woman to walk around the world while raising $250,000 for 13 breast cancer organizations around the globe! You’ll also laugh with our Friday Gourmet Brunch n’ Speaker, Jeff Wozer, also known as the "Corporate Comedian", as he helps us understand how to become less distracted by our devices and more in tune with our life experiences.
Full Convention Speaker Line-Up
 
KEYNOTE LUNCHEON SPEAKER
Polly Letofsky,
Motivational Speaker,
GlobalWalk, Inc
Little Steps: Big Feat: Life and Leadership Lessons from One Woman's Walk Around the World

On August 1, 1999, Polly Letofsky left her Colorado home and headed west. She traveled across 4 continents, 22 countries, and over 14,000 miles -- by foot -- to become the first woman to walk around the world.

As an awareness campaign for breast cancer, survivors and well-wishers around the world came out to walk with her. Every day strangers welcomed her into their homes and shared meals. Across four continents she had dinner conversations with poets, politicians, country singers, olive growers, pig farmers and the female bomb maker in Australia. The world had embraced her.

But in the middle of Polly’s five-year journey, the world suddenly shifted on its axis when September 11 flung us all into a crossroads in world history.

To rapt audiences, she richly details her journey with humor and honest reflection, the good times and the hardships. Sometimes serious, sometimes funny, always inspirational, Polly’s program personifies the spirit of commitment and perseverance that will compel you to conquer life’s challenges -- one step at a time.

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Polly Letofsky had a childhood dream to go discover the world by foot. On August 1, 1999, at the age of 37, Polly left her Colorado home and headed west. She traveled across 4 continents, 22 countries, and over 14,000 miles -- by foot -- to become the first woman to walk around the world.

When Polly walked into her first Muslim country, the events of 9/11 slammed us all into a crossroads in world history, and her world walk took an unprecedented turn. The people of the world embraced her, took care of her, and rallied behind her.

Polly’s GlobalWalk has been featured in over 2,000 newspapers, magazines, radio and television stations around the world including Good Housekeeping, CNN International, The CBS Early Show, NBC’s Your Total Health, and Fine Living Channel’s Radical Sabbatical. A documentary Polly’s GlobalWalk has been aired on PBS around the country. Her book, 3mph: The Adventures of One Woman’s Walk Around the World has been awarded 6 national awards, including Best Memoir at the 2011 Writer’s Digest Best Book Awards.

 
THURSDAY GENERAL SESSION 1
Christopher M. George,
Chairman-Elect of MBA,
President and CEO of CMG Financial
A Discussion with MBA Chairman-Elect Chris George

Our resilient industry historically encounters challenges, headwinds, hurdles, opportunities and milestones, and today they seem to come at a much faster pace. Whether we’re talking about political or economic changes, regulatory adjustments, consumer demands, technological advancements, or the natural disasters that impact our customers, our industry stands ready to roll up our sleeves with passion, experience, and grit to get the job done. MBA Chairman-Elect Chris George provides a national update on just how much your passion and hard work have paid off and what lies ahead for the future of the mortgage banking industry. Then we’ll open the floor to a moderated Q&A to discuss with Chris our members’ perspectives and questions.

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Christopher M. George, Chairman-Elect of the Mortgage Bankers Association, is the founder, President and CEO of CMG Financial, a privately held Mortgage Bank, headquartered in San Ramon, California. The company conducts business in 50 states and the District of Columbia and holds federal agency lending approvals with HUD, VA, RHS, GNMA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Founded in 1993, the company is widely known for responsible lending practices, industry and consumer advocacy, market innovation and operational agility. Under George's direction, CMG Financial has developed into a robust firm making its products and services available to the market nationally through three distinct origination channels including wholesale, correspondent and retail Lending which also serves the home builder, real estate, and credit union communities. CMG Financial offers a variety of home loan products including their proprietary product, the All In One Home Loan.

In addition to his role at CMG Financial, George has served on the MBA's Board of Directors since 2012, is a member of MBA's Independent Mortgage Bankers Executive Council and MBA's Consumer Affairs Advisory Council, as well as an active member of MBA's advocacy efforts. He also serves as the 2018 Chairman of MBA's Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Additionally, George is past Chairman for California Mortgage Bankers Association and has served on many advisory boards and task forces within the industry.

In 2012, George established the CMG Foundation, a philanthropic endeavor to support non-profit organizations at both the community and national levels. To date the CMG Foundation has provided valued funding for the Gary Sinise Foundation's R.I.S.E. program, MBA's Opens Doors FoundationTM, Homes for Our Troops, and the Cancer Support Community SF Bay Area programs, as well as benefitting a host of other local organizations.

 
THURSDAY GENERAL SESSION 1 - MODERATOR
Jim Lewis,
Branch Manager,
America's Mortgage, LLC
Session Moderator - A Discussion with MBA Chairman-Elect Chris George

Our resilient industry historically encounters challenges, headwinds, hurdles, opportunities and milestones, and today they seem to come at a much faster pace. Whether we’re talking about political or economic changes, regulatory adjustments, consumer demands, technological advancements, or the natural disasters that impact our customers, our industry stands ready to roll up our sleeves with passion, experience, and grit to get the job done. MBA Chairman-Elect Chris George provides a national update on just how much your passion and hard work have paid off and what lies ahead for the future of the mortgage banking industry. Then we’ll open the floor to a moderated Q&A to discuss with Chris our members’ perspectives and questions.

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Jim Lewis is the Branch Manager of America’s Mortgage LLC, a division of Cherry Creek Mortgage Company, a member of CMLA Board of Governors, and former Chairman of Colorado Mortgage Lenders Association.

His career spans several years in mortgage and real estate finance including ownership of and management of mortgage banking and mortgage broker firms, Private Mortgage Insurance, Savings and Loan, and Resolution Trust Corporation.

 
THURSDAY GENERAL SESSION 2
Kirk Weisler,
Chief Morale Officer,
Team Dynamics, Inc
True Grit and the Culture Warrior

If you want to win the culture war, you have to have the True Grit of the culture warrior. Your team is your tribe, and your tribe is the key to achieving victory through total engagement. Learn to create powerful and purposeful traditions and rituals that build community, commitment and enable you to create not just the culture you want, but the culture your people deserve. Kirk’s sessions are traditionally filled with immediately actionable content so you can go home ready to better engage your tribe as you engage better with your tribe. Culture Warrior?! In this session, you will learn how to cultivate the grit to be one!

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Chief Morale Officer Kirk Weisler is an expert at creating outrageously cool workplace cultures and high performance teams. Over the past 18 years over 50,000 Leaders from across every industry and continent have sought Kirk’s advice and wisdom on building teams, strengthening leaders and improving culture. Years ago Kirk helped to create a corporate culture so rich in ownership spirit, engagement, and measurable results that he was invited to share his approach first nationally, then internationally. He now travels around the world sharing everyday things leaders can do to positively influence, nurture, and build Super COOL cultures and high performance teams.

His unique background as a US Army Ranger, a member of the 19th Special Forces Chaplaincy, his work with At-Risk Youth and experience as a Master Storyteller & Team Builder make him a very fun, engaging, and sought after speaker. He authored the Best Smelling book, The Dog Poop Initiative and the semi – sweet best smeller, "The Cookie Thief. Kirk lives in Phoenix AZ with “Wonderful wife Rebecca and their six remarkable children."

 
FRIDAY GENERAL SESSION 1
Jeff Wozer,
Speaker/Comedian
Seize the Day Not the Smartphone

Jeff’s presentation heightens self-awareness to the control computers and smartphones now dictate over our lives.

To date, on average, we now check our phones 150 times per day. We now spend almost two hours per day on social media which over a lifetime equates to five years and four months squandered scrolling our screens. As a consequence we're viewing instead of doing. Living sedentary lifestyles. Treating life like a cheap approximation.

Jeff meshes his 19 years as a nationally touring stand-up comedian with his outdoor lifestyle and his own computer screen struggles to deliver a compelling, yet refreshingly humorous, multi-media presentation that encourages unplugging from our electronic devices, stepping outside, and pursuing experiences rather than likes while, as a double bonus, enjoying the health benefits of the outdoors.

Imagine, if you will, Dead Poet’s Society meets National Geographic with a healthy dose of Comedy Central.

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Jeff is a speaker, stand-up comedian, writer and outdoor ambassador for Mountain Khakis.

He has toured the national comedy circuit for more than 20 years. Along the way he has performed on some of comedy’s biggest stages – Red Rocks, Las Vegas Strip, Great American Comedy Festival – and with some of comedy’s biggest names – Martin Short, Brian Regan, Lewis Black, John Oliver, Jim Gaffigan and more.

Jeff's humor articles and essays have appeared in more than 40 publications, including Cabin Life Magazine, ESPN's Active.com, and the prestigious Explorer Club’s Explorers Journal. Through his backcountry photography, comedy, and his own tug-of-war with computer screen distractions, Jeff uses his narrative to bring awareness to speaking audiences to the growing tyranny of our electronic devices.

When not talking about himself in the third person Jeff skis, kayaks, backpacks and skis.