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2022 WWV Award Winners
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Raisa Fudim has dedicated two decades of her life to service...
...from her time advocating social work to her contributions to her community outreach recognized by the Russian American Media group. Raisa established a vision for her place in this world long before entering the mortgage industry. Raisa immigrated to the United States at the age of 14. She found an early passion for being an educator at heart when she embarked on her first business, Northwest Dream Jobs, where she trained adults with special needs through educational or vocational training to become fully independent. Advocacy taught Raisa the true impact selflessness could have on everyone she comes into contact with in the mortgage industry.
Raisa purchased her first home in 2002 with a down payment assistance plan that left her with a horrible borrowing experience. She made a promise to herself to learn as much as possible about the mortgage industry to ensure no client she comes into contact with suffers from the same experience ever again. In 2003, she began her career in the broker world. The 2008 meltdown caused a pause in her career rise and she worked in finance-related roles during the years leading up to 2014 when she earned her license and returned to origination.
Raisa’s path of tribulations leading to her elevated status in the mortgage industry demonstrates the importance of encouraging and guiding women through education. Raisa and many women before her have trailblazed a path by shattering the societal standards of women in the mortgage industry to showcase what extraordinary women can accomplish in this industry. Raisa said she has never denied service to anyone. With her background in a wide range of social work, she has helped people from all walks of life achieve their personal and professional goals. She understands the rejection people feel when mortgage professionals turn them down. Raisa does not want her clients ever to feel that way. She understands their dream to own a home is of utmost importance to them. In her experience, she believes if there is a will, there's a way, and she supports her clients along the way with a step-by-step plan.
Learn more about Raisa...
“Try not to become a (wo)man of success but rather become a (wo)man of value.”
- Albert Einstein, revised by Chasity Graff
Why is there still a glass ceiling? This industry has repeatedly proven women can hold the same leadership roles as men. We see it in the promotions of amazing women to CEO and CFO positions. We rally around the leadership team of AIME, with a woman in the leadership role. Chasity would like this to be a non-issue. She refuses to settle for less than a man's value. She also refuses to allow someone else to label her worth.

Chasity Graff has served the lending industry for 17 years. While learning to embrace her career, she found a fondness for coaching and assisting others, both borrowers through experience and loan originators through the business of lending. Chasity operates several high-level Facebook groups with memberships in the thousands. She started as a small southern broker, but her large presence, perseverance, and endearing spirit has led her to repetitive national recognition. Among other accolades, Chasity is a two-time recipient of the WWV Award, a two-time recipient of NMP's 40 under 40 to watch, plus one of the current year's NMP’s Most Connected Mortgage Professionals. Chasity has also been featured in various publications and podcasts. Chasity embraces teamwork through social interaction to expand industry knowledge and empower others in their growth!
Learn more about Chasity...
"And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to bloom."
- Anais Nin
Women have an inherent ability to get it done.
Sarah believes women faced with challenges and obstacles, should be encouraged to trust their inner strength and confidence to overcome and thrive in any situation. Women need to support each other and remind each other every day they are capable. When women continue to band together and cheer for each other, there is no limit to their potential in this industry.
Sarah has been in the financial world since 2004, holding positions in investments and retail banking before finding her home in mortgage in 2012. Her knowledge of underwriting guidelines from her prior experience as a processor and operations manager has helped Sarah become a highly qualified and skilled loan officer. Sarah has had one loan declined since becoming an originator in January 2020.
In 2021, she closed over 24 million in volume, and she helped create the vision and direction for her company, Coastal Custom Mortgage. She is excited to continue her company’s growth into additional states. Also in 2021, Sarah earned certification as a Vision Master 20/20 Vision for Success Coaching. Her designation as a Vision Master indicates completion and mastery of the skills taught in more than 24 business and sales skills courses.
Learn more about Sarah...
“Women who believe in each other can survive anything. Women who believe in each other create armies that will win kingdoms and wars.”
- Nikita Gill
When we hear statistics reporting five percent of loan officers originate 80 percent of the total volume of loans nationwide, you find out how true it is when you get to know Laiken Hobbs.

Laiken has gone from a brand-new loan officer to a well-seasoned mortgage professional, consistently closing double-digit units each month. Her ability to manage herself and her team at such a high level in such a quick time is a testament to Laiken’s desire always to have the vision for higher goals and then go about achieving them.
Laiken’s vision is for all women to continue to empower one another rather than bring one another down! To learn from one another and celebrate each other’s successes!

Learn more about Laiken...
Don't Worry
Until It's Time
To Worry
Melinda is known for her strong work ethic, positivity, attention to detail, and kindness. With over 20 years of experience, it’s no secret she is an influential, successful, and dedicated leader in the mortgage industry. Melinda Wilner is UWM’s Chief Operating Officer, a position she has held since 2015. In this role, she leads over 4,000 underwriting and operations team members, setting a new standard for excellence by focusing on efficiency, accessibility, and service. Providing elite client service is a top priority for Melinda; doing so is the best way to earn clients for life.
Melinda believes the future is bright for women in the mortgage and banking industries. “I hope women continue to see that they can succeed in mortgages, despite being a male-dominated industry. I think the industry will continue to grow and be more diverse in all aspects. I firmly believe that having different perspectives and voices at the table help nurture the overall success of a company.”
Melinda works in lockstep with IT and oversees the largest collective group of teams at UWM, where she constantly strives to streamline the lending process for mortgage brokers and borrowers nationwide. Melinda originally joined UWM in 2011 as Underwriting Manager and has held positions including Head of Underwriting and Chief Risk Officer. She was most recently recognized as one of Crain’s 2021 Notable Women in Banking and was a HousingWire Vanguard award winner in 2017. A notable award UVM’s team earned was the title of #1 wholesale lender for eight consecutive years and in November 2022, they earned the title of #1 overall lender in America.
Melinda says it’s surreal to see how far UVM has come since joining their team. Every day she is surrounded by some of the most talented, dedicated, and hard-working individuals. Together they were able to accomplish something many in the industry thought they never would. Professionally, this is an accomplishment Melinda will always cherish, and she is grateful for the endless teamwork, and collaboration, which took them there.
Learn more about Melinda...
Loren ipsum.
“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me?”- Ayn Rand
An eight-year veteran in the industry, Ashlee's vision is to continue breaking barriers for women in the industry. This includes standing for ethical best practices in treating all women equally and showing how standing up for what you believe in while believing in yourself first, brings success. She works to continuously create strategies and experiences, build company culture, and increase retention throughout the business. She believes through training, growth, and personal development, all dreams are possible if you push yourself past your level of comfort. When one succeeds, then we all succeed.

Ashlee Cragun is responsible for building the entire onboarding and training department for First Option Mortgage (FOM) and plays an active role in helping the organization grow by creating marketing programs and recruiting efforts. She is enthusiastically involved in developing the next generation of Women with Vision winners. Other interests close to Ashlee’s heart include being actively involved in social media, promoting a balanced lifestyle for new recruits, and being an active member of 20/20 VSC’s Women with Vision Board of Directors.
Learn more about Ashlee
“Never apologize for being a powerful woman.”
– Unknown
Jessica is driven to excel and help as many people as possible build wealth through homeownership. Her vision is to see all women have a place at the table and the opportunity to excel in everything they set out to do.

Jessica is an 18-year-industry veteran, which includes seven years as the Sole Broker Owner of Clear Choice Mortgage. She is a Certified Mortgage Advisor, ranked No. 4 as a Vetted VA, a previous Women With Vision Award recipient, and a 20/20 Vision for Success Master Student. If this wasn’t enough to keep her busy, she is a single mom to two beautiful daughters.
Learn more about Jessica...