Who's Who of Professional Women


Heather Palomo

Proven and celebrated veteran mortgage lending expert Heather Palomo is a senior vice president and mortgage lending manager at Central Bank in Houston, Texas, where she is praised and responsible for creating a secondary market for large sectors of loans, greatly diversifying portfolio product offerings to fit borrowers’ needs, and saving the bank from massive potential losses. She laid the foundation for her unique foresight years earlier by earning a Master of Arts in business management from the University of Phoenix and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, psychology, and interdisciplinary studies at the University of Houston-Downtown.

Ms. Palomo has been recognized throughout her 20-plus year career for her keen awareness, having been named to the coveted President’s Club and honored with the Leading Women Award from Living Magazine and the Circle of Excellence Award from Caliber Home Loans. Early in her career, she also won the Chase Leadership Star Award from Chase Manhattan Bank, where she worked as the liaison between underwriting, sales, and asset recovery and mitigated several million dollars in losses the bank would have taken due to fraud—and met her husband who was a vice president in another department. The couple has two children.

Attributing her success to possessing a strong work ethic, determination, and integrity while promoting diversity at every professional turn, Ms. Palomo worked her way through college as a full-time student, thus giving her the time-management skills that would benefit her throughout her career. She gives every effort 100%, which has served her well, and would give 150 % if it were possible. As a people manager, she believes it is important to get feedback directly from her staff before making any major changes because their jobs are impacted. Ms. Palomo’s vast experience and knowledge grew in part by learning from the experiences of others and sharing her own with her team, especially educating them when changes occur in the market. Mentors also have been critical in helping her solve problems, achieve her personal goals, and reach career milestones.

Before joining Central Bank, Ms. Palomo was a correspondent sales executive at Caliber Home Loans, a correspondent account executive for the Stonegate Mortgage Corporation, an operations manager and assistant vice president at First Community Credit Union in Houston, an account executive for the GMAC ResCap, Inc., an account executive at CIT Finance Investment Bank, and a bank officer and underwriter at Chase Manhattan Bank. She has earned certifications in executive education, business administration, and management from the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business at Rice University and as a general lines agent in life, accident, health, HMO, property, and casualty coverage from the Texas Department of Insurance.

Looking back at the past several years, Ms. Palomo assesses that the mortgage banking industry has been very complicated and taken her on “a roller coaster ride” related to fluctuations in the market. Turning her attention to the future, she plans to work hard within her department at Central Bank to achieve consistent profitability and growth and will start rebuilding based on new interest rates and available products. Ms. Palomo also expects to return to school to pursue a doctorate. Ultimately, she hopes that her Central Bank colleagues and industry peers remember her for diversifying and boldly opening the secondary market and making the bank “quite a bit” of money, as she recalls. Most important, Ms. Palomo would like to be thought of as a humble person who often empathized with and related to other employees by purposely remembering that she also performed many of their jobs in some capacity during her fulfilling career.


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