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Get to Know Our Trailblazers

Built by Originators for a Better Culture.

Assurance Financial was built by a few bold originators who set out on their own to create a different kind of mortgage company culture. One that prioritizes employee happiness in order to grow. Through great leaders, we've been able to keep up with industry standards and accomplish exceptional goals over the past 20 years.

Learn more about our leaders and how their industry experience continues to drive us forward.

Kenny Hodges, Founder, Chief Executive Officer

Kenny Hodges is the founder and CEO of Assurance Financial. After working with Wells Fargo for seven years out of college, he founded Assurance Financial in 2001 and has grown the company to over 20 branch offices supported by two operations centers. He is a licensed mortgage banker through the National Mortgage Licensing System Registry and has 27 years of mortgage lending experience. Kenny earned a B.S. in Entrepreneurship Management from Louisiana Tech University where he was elected to serve as the Student Government Association President. He is an active member of the Mortgage Bankers Association and the Louisiana Mortgage Lenders Association where he is a past Board President. He is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO) Louisiana and is a past Chapter Chair. Kenny currently serves on the Louisiana Tech University College of Business Dean’s Advisory Board. Kenny is married with three children and resides in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Steve Ward, President/Chief Operating Officer

Steve Ward has over 17 years with Assurance Financial. He began his career in production before assisting in the company’s retail branch expansion. Steve is Assurance Financial’s Chief Operating Officer, Chairman of the Executive Committee and a member of the company’s Board of Directors. Steve lives in Baton Rouge, LA with his wife and three children.

Chad Hebert, Chief Financial Officer

Chad Hebert, CPA, CMB, joined Assurance Financial in 2013 and is now the Chief Financial Officer. Prior to 2013, Chad worked in public accounting along with a role in financial reporting at a publicly traded advertising firm. In 2017, Chad earned the Certified Mortgage Banker designation and is a member of the MBA Accounting & Financial Management Committee. Chad graduated from Louisiana State University and currently resides in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with his wife and daughter.

Courtney Henson, Chief Administrative Officer

Courtney Henson is Chief Administrative Officer for Assurance Financial. She is responsible for the oversight and management of the HR, Marketing, IT, and Corporate Council departments. She has been with the company since 2013, and has been an integral part of its growth during that time, and now sits as a permanent member of the company’s Executive Committee.

Scott Alexander, Chief Risk Officer

Scott Alexander is the Chief Risk Officer for Assurance Financial. Scott brings 30+ years of experience in the lending industry to this role. He has held various roles in the sales and operational groups during his tenure with the company. Over his 13+ years with Assurance Financial, he assisted with the formation of Assurance Financial’s Operations Division and served as an Underwriting Manager, the Director of Operations, and a Sales Manager in our Baton Rouge Branch. He also assisted with Assurance obtaining it’s FHA and VA underwriting authority. Scott posses both his FHA and VA underwriting certifications. He is a member of the Mortgage Bankers Association, Greater New Orleans Lenders Association, and the Greater Baton Rouge Lending Association. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family.

David Alello, Western Regional Sales Manager

David Alello is the Regional Sales Manager for the western division of Assurance Financial. Having honed his knowledge of the mortgage industry, he was promoted to the deserving role of Branch Manager in 2015 then to Regional Manager in 2022. David is licensed to originate in the state of Louisiana through the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System and Registry (NMLS), and is a member of the Mortgage Bankers Association, National Association of Mortgage Brokers, and the Louisiana Mortgage Lenders Association. In his free time he enjoys boat riding and racing.

Clavis Smith, Eastern Regional Sales Manager

Clavis entered the mortgage business in 1989 and has held numerous positions in mortgage origination and sales production before moving exclusively into sales leadership in 2014. He joined Assurance Financial in 2018 as the Eastern Regional Sales Manager. His experience in retail mortgage production provides great guidance and support to branch leaders and loan production personnel. Clavis is also very active in both state and national Mortgage Banker’s Associations advocating on issues to support the industry. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and currently resides in Glen Allen, VA with his wife. He has four children and one grandchild, and enjoys fishing on the Chesapeake Bay or playing tennis and golf in his spare time.

Sarah Girod Lansing, Business and Talent Development Partner

Sarah Girod Lansing is the Business and Talent Development Partner at Assurance Financial with over 10 years of experience in the mortgage industry. In her time at Assurance, she has worked as an LOA, LO and Corporate Trainer. Sarah currently leads cross-functional collaboration with Operations and Sales to identify and cultivate key talents within the company and helps contribute to a culture of continuous improvement and professional growth. Sarah is a member of the Mortgage Bankers Association, Louisiana Mortgage Bankers Associations, and The Association for Talent Development. She currently works and plays in Baton Rouge with her husband Mitch, twin boys, and three dogs.

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