ACUMA meetingLAS VEGAS – Withalmost 400 attendees at its 18th annual conference,the American Credit Union Mortgage Association found it needed avery large ballroom space at the Wynn Encore Resort to hold itsgeneral sessions. Trade show attendees arranged their displaybooths around the edges of the room and many attendees both tooknotes and ate around large round tables in the center of theroom.

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Photo credit: The View Finders

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ACUMA meetingBut with the largerthan expected attendance, not everyone got table seating.

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Steve FarberLeadership consultantand speaker Steve Farber set the tone for the event on Mondayafternoon with an inspirational presentation on the power of lovein the business world. Business executives need to understand theirlives and work as taking part in things greater than themselves,something he called GTY (Greater than Yourself).

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“Love is not a word many people associate with the businessworld, but if you can think about it, love is a key element ofeverything we do as executives, as leaders, as human beings,”Farber said.

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Farber recounted how people in his life had helped him attainhis goals and how he came to realize that he needed, in turn, tohelp someone else attain their goals. He challenged attendees notto necessarily do that immediately, but at least come up with ashort list of two or three people in their lives for whom theymight make a positive impact.

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Everyone can and should make room for GTY in their lives, Farbertold the audience.

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Tim RoodTim Rood, chairman of theWashington-based Collingwood Group, a business and financialconsultancy explained to attendees that even though individualfederal lawmakers might strongly favor legislating reform at FannieMae and Freddie Mac, it's unlikely. Upcoming elections, along witha very crowded legislative calendar remaining for the short amountof time this year and vastly improved GSE performance, wouldprevent any change.

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Fannie and Freddie are charging some of the highest fees ever onthe cleanest book of business they have ever seen and offloadingmuch of the remaining risk, Rood said.

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“I can't see anyone being really anxious to change that,” Roodadded.

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Erik WahlErikWahl, a former corporate executive who left the corporate worldto reconnect with creativity and art, demonstrated how creativitycould spark innovation and improved performance.

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He delivered a high-energy presentation that used art, musicvideos and audience participation to drive home the idea thattapping into creativity when confronting business challenges notonly makes men and women better executives, it also helps thembecome better people.

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Over the course of his presentation, Wahl painted three works ofart: A portrait of Abraham Lincoln, a picture of an American eagleand a portrait of Apple Computer founder and former CEO Steve Jobs.The portrait of Abraham Lincoln went to an attendee from Chicagowho accepted the invitation to become involved with its creation.ACUMA is holding a silent auction for the American eagle pictureshown above.

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ACUMATim Mislansky (far left),chief lending officer at the Dayton, Ohio-based Wright Patt CreditUnion joined Craig Olson, senior vice president of 1stmortgage operations at the Alexandria, Va.-based Pentagon FederalCredit Union and housing finance consultant Tracy Ashfield on apanel to discuss adjustable rate mortgages at credit unions.

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Mislansky is also president of myCUmortgage, the credit union'swholly owned housing finance CUSO.

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Ashfield, CEO of Ashfield and Associates, moderated the panelthat discussed the ways adjustable rate products can benefitmembers who are not planning to remain in a property they arepurchasing for more than 10 years and are not any riskier for themembers than longer-term products.

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“We particularly believe the 5/5 product costs significantlyless over a ten year period than does a fixed rate product,”Mislansky said.

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