Jewish & Palestinian Students Unite to Answer Obama’s Call to Action in Cairo By Launching Site to Empower Middle East Entrepreneurs

Philadelphia, PA (PRWEB) June 9, 2009

Speaking to the Muslim world from Cairo University, President Barack Obama recently challenged people of all nationalities to “turn dialogue into interfaith service so bridges between peoples lead to action.” A group of four University of Pennsylvania students and alumni have recently answered Obama’s call by launching, a grassroots organization that promotes economic opportunity and stability in the Middle East. The organization, founded by two Jews and two Palestinians, is a not-for-profit Internet platform that allows individuals to make small loans to specific micro-entrepreneurs in the West Bank. In doing so, allows one to help Palestinian micro-entrepreneurs lift themselves out of poverty by building sustainable businesses., which was recently showcased on Fox Business, has partnered with world-premier institutions to develop their international microfinance platform. The organization received grants from the Clinton Global Initiative and Ashoka, and has formalized relationships with a number of successful microfinance institutions in the Middle East. These microfinance institutions have been approved by the US Government’s humanitarian assistance agency, USAID. They are responsible for selecting creditworthy entrepreneurs, posting entrepreneur profiles to’s website, and delivering capital and support services throughout the duration of each loan. Lenders can contribute as little as $ 25 to a particular entrepreneur’s micro-loan and then receive updates as their entrepreneur’s business grows. Unlike a donation, lenders get their money back at the end of the pre-set loan period and can choose to withdraw their money or to re-loan it again and again. aims to unite people from all parts of the political spectrum by focusing on the concrete business of economic development. The site creates financial and emotional bonds between the diverse set of lenders around the world and borrowers in the Middle East who participate. The founders of are sensitive to the power of interfaith dialogue as they themselves crossed ethnic and religious lines to bring the organization to life. “We have constant political disagreements,” said Co-Founder Sam Adelsberg, “but we recognize that in order to make progress we have to focus on the areas on which we can agree. One thing we all believe is that there is no winner in poverty.”’s launch comes on the heels of a $ 5,000 pilot which yielded a 100% repayment rate. While the Middle East is more volatile than other regions, this success is in line with repayment rates worldwide: according to the Microcredit Summit Campaign, the average on-time repayment rate for microcredit is more than 97%. hopes to replicate the success of its pilot going forward. While economic development is central to the organization’s mission, believes the interaction facilitated on the site alone may have a positive impact. Said Co-Founder Allam Taj, “Part of our goal is to humanize the Palestinian experience, both through exposing lenders to specific individuals in the West Bank and by letting borrowers know that their loan was made possible by an organization started by young American Jews and Palestinians who care about their future.” benefits from an accomplished Board of Advisors including Delphine Thizy, PlaNet Finance’s Director of the Palestinian Territories, and attorney Howard Finkelstein, one of the country’s pioneers in the securitization of microfinance-related obligations. is also being advised by Hanna Siniora, a member of the Palestine National Council and the chairperson of the Palestinian-American Chamber of Commerce, and David Gutelius, a Silicon Valley software entrepreneur and co-founder of Ishtirak, a technology and microeconomic development consultancy focused exclusively on the Middle East and Islamic Africa. recently held its official launch in Philadelphia at the Wharton School’s Jon M. Huntsman Hall. The event included a presentation by the founders, an invocation from University Chaplain Chas Howard and a keynote address on active citizenship by Dr. John DiIulio, the first Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based Initiatives. The event culminated in a surprise video-conference with Salma Suleiman of Asala, one of’s microfinance partners in Ramallah. Salma stayed up until 3 AM local time to participate in the launch event and to encourage attendees to get involved. Said Salma, “ will help us increase our microlending activities here in the West Bank. This in turn will enable us to shepherd more and more families out of poverty.”

In the words of President Obama, “Faith should bring us together. That’s why we’re forging service projects in America to bring together Christians, Muslims, and Jews.” is proud to be a part of this movement of interfaith dialogue and service.

For more information, please visit

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Diamond Resorts Corporation Announces an Update Call to Discuss Recent Developments

Las Vegas, NV (PRWEB) April 22, 2011

Diamond Resorts Corporation (the “Corporation”) will host a conference call for holders of its Senior Secured Notes on Wednesday, April 27, 2011, at 6:00 p.m. EST for the purpose of discussing the Corporation’s pending securitization transaction, the details of the recently confirmed Plan of Reorganization of Tempus Resorts International and how it will impact Tempus Acquisition, LLC (an affiliate of Diamond Resorts International

The Collingwood Group to Conduct First Mortgage Industry Conference Call

Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) January 26, 2012

The Collingwood Group (Collingwood) is pleased to introduce its new offering — a series of industry conference calls — which will begin with a February 9, 2012 call entitled FHA Enforcement: Myths, Misconceptions and Facts. This call series comes as a result of Collingwoods launch of its new Risk Management and Compliance Division, established with its January 1, 2012 acquisition of GWN Consulting, LLC (GWN), a firm specializing in Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Ginnie Mae risk management and quality control.

Collingwoods Risk Management and Compliance Division staff brings to the organization extensive FHA and Ginnie Mae knowledge and experience, and plans to share information on an ongoing basis with Collingwood clients and other industry colleagues. As part of this effort, the team will launch a series of educational conference calls, beginning with the first call FHA Enforcement: Myths, Misconceptions and Facts focusing on FHA Enforcement, Quality Assurance and Inspector General reviews and the Mortgagee Review Board. The call, offered at no cost to participants, will be held on February 9, 2012, at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time. The call will be led by Collingwood Group Chairman and former FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery, who will moderate a discussion between Karen Garner, Collingwood Group Managing Director and former HUD compliance manager and GWN Principal, and David Hintz, former Secretary to the HUD Mortgagee Review Board. It will also serve as an introduction to the services that the Risk Management and Compliance Division will offer.

Additional calls will be held moving forward, covering potential topics such as FHA Loss Mitigation tools, Ginnie Mae compliance reviews, and compliant and effective quality control plans.

This is a critical time for lenders and servicers struggling with compliance, litigation and claims management issues related to their FHA and Ginnie Mae operations, said Montgomery. The experience, insight, and relationships of our new Risk Management and Compliance Division staff can provide substantial information that will be helpful to these organizations in developing proactive, preventative activities in their compliance efforts.

The expansion of Collingwoods offerings and this call could not be more timely, given the issuance of the press release by Acting FHA Commissioner Carol Galante announcing changes to FHA authority for the lender insurance program and standards for indemnification requests. (Follow this link to the press release issued by HUD:

With FHA toughening its standards, rules and penalties, and with volume that has grown to historically high levels, lenders and issuers can reasonably expect corresponding increases in the level of FHA audit, enforcement actions, and penalties. The goal of Collingwoods Risk Management and Compliance Division is to assist its clients with capabilities that now include FHA and Ginnie Mae lender/issuer applications and re-certifications, preparation and responses to audits or reviews, origination or servicing compliance and best practices, claims management and recoveries, program manuals and operating guides, and development of written and program training.

Garner is proud of the new divisions capabilities, saying, With our upcoming conference call series and new services, we are confident that we can provide substantial assistance to lenders and servicers as they focus on quality control activities that will enable them to proactively monitor performance and mitigate risk.

About The Collingwood Group

The Collingwood Group ( is a Washington, DC-based business advisory firm focused on growing clients businesses, promoting revenue growth and increasing investment returns. The firm is led by Chairman Brian Montgomery, former Assistant Secretary for Housing and Federal Housing Commissioner, and Vice Chairman Joe Murin, former President and CEO of Ginnie Mae. Both played major roles in the federal governments efforts to address the nations financial crisis and restore stability and liquidity to financial markets. The firms expertise spans all aspects of Agency, non-Agency and FHA/VA housing financing programs; Ginnie Mae securitization activities; domestic and international secondary market activities and issues; primary and special servicing; full asset lifecycle vendor and talent management; and all elements of portfolio due diligence, acquisition, property management and asset disposition.

Visit for additional information on The Collingwood Groups February 9, 2012 conference call FHA Enforcement: Myths, Misconceptions and Facts or to register for the call.


The Collingwood Group Announces Mortgage Market Meeting Call On the Subject matter of FHA Servicing Compliance

Washington, DC (PRWEB) March 29, 2012

The Collingwood Team (Collingwood) is happy to announce its next in a sequence of business meeting calls – FHA Servicing Compliance, becoming held on Thursday, April twelve, 2012.


This contact will concentrate on FHA servicing compliance such as how FHAs Quality Assurance Division conducts on-web site servicing compliance reviews and the sanctions they might ask for for violations of FHA specifications. As an illustration, requests for indemnification are not completely for financial loan origination violations but can also be levied against servicers. Senior consultants from Collingwoods Danger Administration and Compliance Division will discuss these topics and other widespread results from the QAD compliance evaluations, as well as the reduction mitigation waterfall and what documentation you need to retain to be compliant.


There are many packages in area – which are in simple fact mandated by FHA – to support mitigate losses, beginning with early intervention to aid encourage property retention, relocating via different steps and choices including mortgage modification, and going all the way to foreclosure, when necessary, explained Brian Montgomery, Collingwood Group Chairman and previous FHA Commissioner. How servicers can – and should – offer with these situations will be the major target of this business get in touch with, with a goal of providing information that is timely, insightful, and useful.


The phone, provided at no cost to individuals, will be led Brian Montgomery, who will average a discussion between Karen Garner, Collingwood Group Taking care of Director and former HUD compliance supervisor, and Earl Greer, Senior Specialist for Collingwood and previous Discipline Keep an eye on for FHAs High quality Assurance Division.


FHA has elevated the number of on-internet site reviews at servicers in excess of the past numerous several years. It is not unusual for a servicer with several years of company to be experiencing their 1st FHA servicing review, said Garner. With improved emphasis on servicing compliance by FHA, the CFPB, OCC and other regulators, now is the time to ensure that you know what to count on and have procedures and methods in place to decrease the threat to your organization.


Collingwoods Threat Administration and Compliance Division is sharing information on an ongoing foundation with Collingwood customers and other business colleagues. Its first phone FHA Enforcement: Myths, Misconceptions and Information, targeted on FHA Enforcement, Good quality Assurance and Inspector Common reviews, and the Mortgagee Evaluation Board. A summary of that call is offered on Collingwoods internet site at


About The Collingwood Group&#thirteen

The Collingwood Group ( is a Washington, DC-dependent enterprise advisory agency focused on increasing clientele businesses, advertising earnings expansion and growing expense returns. The organization is led by Chairman Brian Montgomery, previous Assistant Secretary for Housing and Federal Housing Commissioner, and Vice Chairman Joe Murin, previous President and CEO of Ginnie Mae. Both performed significant roles in the federal governments endeavours to handle the nations fiscal crisis and restore balance and liquidity to financial markets. The companies skills spans all facets of Agency, non-Agency and FHA/VA housing financing applications Ginnie Mae securitization routines domestic and worldwide secondary industry pursuits and troubles main and special servicing full asset lifecycle vendor and expertise management and all elements of portfolio because of diligence, acquisition, residence management and asset disposition.


Go to for extra data on The Collingwood Teams April 12, 2012 conference get in touch with FHA Servicing Compliance or to sign up for the call.


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