Emilio Fernandez, President, has been in the real estate industry for 20 years. Prior to joining North American, Emilio was a partner in the international law firm of Holland & Knight LLP, where he practiced in the real estate group and routinely issued title insurance policies on complex commercial real estate matters. Emilio is a member of the Florida Bar and numerous real estate industry organizations — most recently, RESPRO, a trade organization that brings together a cross section of providers in the real estate/financing industry. Emilio works from our Eastern Region office in Miami, Florida.
John A. Fries, Executive Vice President and Chief Underwriting Counsel, is an accomplished real estate attorney who brings over 35 years of underwriting experience to North American Title Insurance Company. He is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University and the Duquesne University School of Law. Prior to joining NATIC in 2011, John spent 3 years as Vice President, Business Control Manager for the title services division of a major national bank. There, he managed a team providing operational and transactional title underwriting guidance for the company's title operations. John has been an underwriting counsel for over 20 years and has held the position of Senior Vice President, Underwriting Counsel for a leading national title insurance underwriter for over 15 years. He also spent the first 16 years of his career providing legal and underwriting support in private practice and for various banks and title insurance companies. John works from our Eastern Region office in Miami, Florida.
Geoffrey Ginn, Senior Vice President, Independent Agency Division, has 15 years of experience as a real estate attorney within the title insurance industry. Geoff previously owned a multi-state law firm and title agency which operated throughout New England, and also has corporate experience in sales, management and operations. Geoff is a member of the Massachusetts Bar and the North Carolina Bar. He earned his JD and his MBA from Suffolk University Law School and Sawyer School of Management in Boston, MA. He is primarily responsible for building North American's Independent Agency Division, but also provides underwriting support in the states of North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. Geoff works from our Independent Agency field office in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Jeff Howeth, Executive Vice President, General Counsel, Jefferson "Jeff" Howeth is General Counsel of North American Title Group. He brings a 20-year background in real estate and corporate law to this position, in addition to experience in securities, finance, and executive management of legal and compliance functions of title insurance underwriters and agencies. Prior to joining North American Title, Jeff served as Deputy General Counsel of PGP Title Inc. and Premier Land Title Insurance Co., subsidiaries of PulteGroup Inc. He had previously served as General Counsel of Commerce Title and Closing Services, and had spent nine years with Centex Corp., where he had held the position of Executive Vice President, General Counsel of Centex Financial Services LLC. Jeff graduated magna cum laude from Oklahoma Baptist University and from the Washington and Lee University School of Law.
Margery Q. Lee, Executive Vice President and National Claims and Litigation Manager, has been a member of the California State Bar Association since 1980. Margery oversees all of the title insurance and escrow claims and litigation matters for North American’s national operations. Prior to joining North American, she was in private practice. Additionally, Margery was in-house litigation counsel for a major national title insurer, actively engaged in trial and appellate defense of title insurers and underwritten agents in California. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Reed College, Portland, Oregon, and a J.D. from the University of San Francisco, School of Law, San Francisco, California. She currently serves on the Legislative Committee of the California Land Title Association. Margery works from our Western Region office in Concord, California.
Robert N. Meyers, Vice President and Senior Underwriting Counsel, provides expert residential and commercial underwriting guidance to independent agents and affiliate operations in the Eastern Region. Bob also handles both routine and complex title insurance claims in the Eastern Region. He has over 31 years of title insurance industry experience. Prior to joining NATIC, Bob held underwriting, commercial and managerial positions for a major national underwriter. He earned a BBA degree from Western Michigan University and JD and LLM degrees from Wayne State University. Bob is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, the Florida Bar, the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section and the Dade County Bar Association. Bob works in the Eastern Regional office in Miami.
Sunny Akins, Vice President and Agency Operations Manager, Eastern Region, had spent fifteen years at the corporate office of another major underwriter before joining Lennar’s title operations in 1993. She is responsible for making the agency network operate smoothly by addressing agents' questions, needs and obligations. Sunny attended Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, and received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Miami. Sunny works from our Eastern Region office in Miami, Florida.
Chris Casa, Director of Marketing and Educational Programs, has 14 years of content marketing and business development experience. Prior to joining NATIC, Chris was a founding member of an award-winning multimedia publishing company educating the real estate, settlement services and mortgage lending industries. As an entrepreneur he has built a career focused on the mastering and teaching of others on marketing campaigns, list and audience development, relationship building, communications, publishing and the operational systems that support them.
Regional Underwriting Associates: Ginny Abiassi, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Texas and Oklahoma Michael Bates, Esq., Regional Underwriting Counsel, Southeast Eugene Berkes, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Illinois and Ohio P. David Dickard, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Mountain States John Graham, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Arizona and Nevada Mark Heacock, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Mid-Atlantic Robert Meyers, Vice President, Senior Underwriting Counsel, Eastern Region Gytis Nefas, Vice President, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Southern California Kent Pelt, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Northern California Bill Reetz, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Pacific Northwest Michael Waiwood, Regional Underwriting Counsel, Mid-West