NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. – William Lyon Homes (the “Company”) (NYSE: WLH), a leading homebuilder in the Western U.S., today announced the appointment of Brian S. Hale to a newly formed executive position as President – Financial Services. Mr. Hale is a 35 year veteran of the mortgage business and is one of the most recognized executives in the mortgage banking industry. Most recently, Mr. Hale served as Chief Executive Officer of Stearns Lending, LLC, one of the nation’s largest direct mortgage lenders.
“We are fortunate and excited to bring Brian on board in this new leadership role where he will focus on optimizing our financial services initiatives, which currently consist of our interest in two separate mortgage joint ventures, and explore additional ancillary business opportunities including title and insurance for the Company,” said Matthew R. Zaist, President and Chief Executive Officer of William Lyon Homes. “We have made significant progress on our growth plans for our core homebuilding business, and as we continue to build on our size and scale in our attractive Western U.S. markets, we believe there is a tremendous opportunity to further serve our homebuyers and complement our homebuilding operations, while providing additional sources of earnings for the Company, through further offerings in financial services and other ancillary businesses. Brian is the ideal candidate to lead this important and highly strategic initiative for William Lyon Homes, bringing decades of mortgage lending experience to his new role, including full financial and operational responsibility, channel development, originations, credit and servicing, and a solid reputation and track record in the industry. We look forward to Brian’s leadership in this new position and are pleased to welcome him to the William Lyon Homes family.”
Mr. Hale added, “I am privileged, excited and anxious to get started with Matt and his outstanding team at William Lyon Homes. I have known the William Lyon team for over 10 years as a partner, a client and a well-respected and rapidly growing operator on the national homebuilding scene. The opportunity to contribute to the William Lyon organization through a comprehensive, integrated and thoughtful approach to financial services across the entire homebuilding platform is exciting and it is what drew me to this opportunity. I look forward to working with Matt and his entire team on the continued evolution of William Lyon Homes.”
Mr. Hale served as CEO and a member of the Board of Directors of privately held Stearns Lending for five years. During his tenure he led the expansion of the company’s five operating divisions, driving significant increases in funded loan volumes and the size of the servicing portfolio, while maintaining superior credit quality and compliance ratings. Prior to joining Stearns Lending in 2012, Mr. Hale held several senior executive roles for mortgage banking industry leaders such as Bank of America, serving as its Senior Retail Originations Executive, Countrywide Home Loans, as President and Senior Managing Director of its Consumer Markets Division, Wells Fargo Home Loans, and Fleet Mortgage.
Mr. Hale began his career as a commissioned loan originator. His rise through the various organizations where he has worked include holding national roles in compliance, branch operations, business to business, call center management, joint ventures, strategic alliances, underwriting, finance and national production. Managing virtually every aspect of the business at one time or another has given him a unique perspective on the business and the overall customer experience. His unique ability to recruit and retain top talent in building key executive teams has resulted in highly effective organizations achieving significant growth, market share and quality production, while creating a culture that continuously attracts high caliber professionals.
About William Lyon Homes
William Lyon Homes is one of the largest Western U.S. regional homebuilders. Headquartered in Newport Beach, California, the Company is primarily engaged in the design, construction, marketing and sale of single-family detached and attached homes in California, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Washington and Oregon. Its core markets include Orange County, Los Angeles, the Inland Empire, the San Francisco Bay Area, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, Portland and Seattle. The Company has a distinguished legacy of more than 60 years of homebuilding operations, over which time it has sold in excess of 102,000 homes. The Company markets and sells its homes under the William Lyon Homes brand in all of its markets except for Washington and Oregon, where the Company operates under the Polygon Northwest brand.