My Fight Against Cancer – Help Research Leaders

July 1, 2018

Hello Family, Friends, Fellow Industry and Housing Leaders,

As many/most of you know my life took a different direction in 2016 when I was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer, ultimately forcing my decision to leave the MBA. The nationally renowned Dr Ken Pienta at the Brady Urological Institute at Johns Hopkins put my cancer into remission in February of 2017 – until this past month when it returned. So today I write while under a new treatment plan in hopes of pushing this back again for more time with family and life.

 Prostate Cancer is a huge deal. Here are some facts:

About 1 man in 9 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. Just under 30,000 men die each year from prostate cancer – enough to fill a stadium. There will be approximately 165,000 new cases this year alone. Over 3.1 million men have prostate cancer in the US right now.

Dr Peinta’s team and their revolutionary approach to kill prostate cancer and advanced stages of it, has an urgent need. They need to purchase a state of the art Nikon Eclipse Ti2 microscope (description attached) that costs $250,000. Unlike other microscope’s that show a moment in time, this can show cancer cells and their movements for up to two weeks and see how they interact and transform under various treatments. So, rather than guess where and when mine came back, they can get far more precise. This is huge. Mary and I are starting this off with $20,000 in hopes others will give what they can.

Any donation is fully tax deductible.

As someone in the midst of this battle, I cannot state how thankful we would be and how helpful your donation would be to helping this state of the art research team find cures that would be shared with experts worldwide. Johns Hopkins is a research hospital but funding needs to come from people like us!

All of you have likely been touched by cancer in some way  – this is the number one cancer in men. To donate: please go to: https://secure.jhu.edu/form/stevensprostatecancer

Thank you for any help – Mary, our children, and grandchild, thank you too.

Dave and Mary Stevens

 

Attempts to Influence the Future of Fannie and Freddie

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(Note: This is the first of a series that will look at the current state, the players involved, the options forward, and the politics surrounding the GSE debate)

Since the moment Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were put into conservatorship, a debate has raged over their future. The debate is complex, highly charged and at times, frankly nasty.

Part of the reason for the tone of the debate is that various groups representing the interests of shareholders of the two companies have chosen to wage a bare-knuckles campaign to get the two companies re-privatized. If they were re-privatized the increase in value of these stocks, currently trading below $2 per share, could produce a massive profit to their investors. Thus, a hodge-podge of players acting on behalf of shareholders has put significant capital behind a coordinated effort to increase the odds of their re-privatization, including contributing to sympathetic non-profits and other stakeholders who could be persuaded to share their views, hiring PR firms to plant beneficial op-eds and other stories in the press, and creating organizations intended to give the impression of grass roots support.

At times they have taken to aggressive, ad hominem attacks on those who support GSE reform that they take to be a threat to their interests, suggesting that their positions are motivated by private gain not by public interest, apparently unaware of the irony. They have gone after current and past policymakers in Congress and the executive branch, stakeholders and policy experts, anyone who appears to pose a threat to their interests. While their arguments have yet to break through to a broad set of policymakers in any meaningful way, they have succeeded in infusing the discussion with a level of vitriol and mutual suspicion that has made an already immensely difficult policy challenge even more challenging.

While it is no doubt important for policymakers to decide how to handle the interests of the shareholders of these two institutions, it is critical that they are able to distinguish between that question and the question of what kind of housing finance system is in the best interest of the nation. And it is critical that they don’t reward the kind of campaign that is being waged on their behalf, one that threatens our very ability to deliberate about important issues in a way that has any hope of getting to the right outcome.

So, whether we wind up choosing a path in which Fannie and Freddie are ultimately re-privatized in one form or another, be it legislative or administrative, let us choose that path on the basis of what is best for the nation, not because a few hedge funds have mounted an ugly campaign to keep us from thinking clearly.

Transitioning Beyond MBA

Thoughts on the @MBAmortgage MBA’s future and my reflections

Capital View

This past week the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) announced that they had voted on my replacement as CEO and President. Robert (Bob) Broeksmit was an excellent choice to lead this association in the years ahead.

MBA is the powerhouse that our industry needs in order to effectively represent and influence the key policy issues affecting mortgage finance for both commercial and residential lending. While National Mortgage News did a great job in this article (https://www.nationalmortgagenews.com/news/mbas-david-stevens-a-tough-act-to-follow-for-new-ceo-robert-broeksmit) highlighting the success of these past 7 years, it also showed Bob’s strong background and thoughtful views and reflected the support from leaders he has coming into the job.

Leaving a job you love is hard for anyone, and these past years have been extremely rewarding. To watch this industry come together and align around some really critical issues where we supported good regulation but fought against creating even more confusion in policy making, where…

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Transitioning Beyond MBA

This past week the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) announced that they had voted on my replacement as CEO and President. Robert (Bob) Broeksmit was an excellent choice to lead this association in the years ahead.

MBA is the powerhouse that our industry needs in order to effectively represent and influence the key policy issues affecting mortgage finance for both commercial and residential lending. While National Mortgage News did a great job in this article (https://www.nationalmortgagenews.com/news/mbas-david-stevens-a-tough-act-to-follow-for-new-ceo-robert-broeksmit) highlighting the success of these past 7 years, it also showed Bob’s strong background and thoughtful views and reflected the support from leaders he has coming into the job.

Leaving a job you love is hard for anyone, and these past years have been extremely rewarding. To watch this industry come together and align around some really critical issues where we supported good regulation but fought against creating even more confusion in policy making, where we worked closely with administrations on both sides of the aisle, and where we grew our membership and activities will be great memories to reflect on.

Together we fought for a level playing field for all lenders, created the Diversity and Inclusion Committee and its conference, we established the Opens Doors Foundation to provide mortgage and rental payments for families with critically ill children, grew our young professionals program (mPact), created mPower under Marcia Davies leadership, testified in front of congress multiple times, established a new brand for the association, brought us back to fiscal soundness where we are stronger than ever, and so much more. I have spent time with multiple Presidents including, members of congress, and key regulators from both sides of the aisle. Our brand has never been stronger.

The key to all of this success has been the incredible team of dedicated employees of this association that are experts in policy, finance, law, conferences, education, communication, politics, and more. This is the team that makes it happen and they will do the same going forward.

As I leave MBA and move into my future roles where I plan to consult and participate in other things that are less than full time in order for my wife Mary and I, along with our kids and grandchild, to focus on my cancer, health, and enjoy life, I leave excited for Bob.

Everyone is replaceable and all we can hope for is to leave our roles and organizations in better shape than when we arrived. I have known Bob for decades as have so many others in the industry. He will do a great job in this next chapter.

And, while we will likely see each other around Washington at various events and in congressional hallways, I will enjoy seeing MBA in it’s next chapter and will look forward to our industry maintaining its path focusing on responsible lending, rational legislation and rule making, and addressing the critical issues ahead.

My final message to the members of the MBA is this: stay united and committed to this institution. If you pull back due to short term business challenges, you will lesson the power of its collective voice. Your responsibility as a member of this industry is to join together to make sure we maintain our voice and our success through committed and broad participation from everyone.

Thanks for all of your support these past years. Bob starts in this seat on August 20, 2018 – please be there for him as I move into my new post MBA role.

#InstrengthMBA