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starting his first job at a grocery

store in 1976 in Snellville, GA,

Greg Shumate, now the CEO

and Managing Partner of Brand Mortgage,

opened his first savings account with a

small, hometown bank –The Brand Banking

Company. Impressed with that experience,

Greg logically went back to Brand Bank

when he needed a loan for his first car. These

two small but important milestones marked

the beginning

of an important

relationship that

would lead to great

things not just for

Greg, but also for the

communities and

citizens of Gwinnett

and metro Atlanta.

As a Senior Vice President and Regional

Manager, Greg helped grow the company he

worked for to a top 5 Atlanta firm and opened

over 15 offices in Georgia and Florida.

When the company relocated to Marietta,

Greg decided to

try something

different. With a

young family at

home, Greg thought

the opportunity

and timing was

right to start his

own mortgage firm

with his longtime

friend and business

partner, Bartow

Morgan, CEO of

Brand Bank. So, in 2006, after an hour and a

half conversation between Bartow and Greg,

Brand Mortgage was born.

Even on the verge of the subprime

mortgage crisis, Brand Mortgage got off to

a healthy start. In the past two years alone,

the company has achieved a staggering 198

percent growth rate and added over 100

new jobs. This, combined with their recent

expansion in Gwinnett and being named one

of the top places to work in metro Atlanta

by the

Atlanta Journal-Constitution

, earned

Brand Mortgage the Gwinnett Chamber’s

first-ever Pacesetter Award. Awarded in April

at the Pinnacle Small Business Awards, the

Pacesetter Award honors companies that

display extraordinary innovative practices and

determination. The ability to grow at a record-

setting pace while maintaining focus and

providing a quality service has allowed Brand

Mortgage to overcome adversity and stand

out in a crowd earning them this distinctive


Brand Mortgage’s innovative strategy

that has allowed them to excel in the toughest

of markets, particularly for the mortgage

industry, is really nothing new, but rather

something most companies in the industry

have a hard time doing during these tough

times – maintaining a positive approach to

doing business.

“Our strategy has been to simply outwork

everyone and do it with a bigger smile than

everyone else,” said Greg.

This culture of support and hard work

starts with Greg and permeates throughout

the entire organization and its 170 plus

employees. “I have a career built on what

other people think of me and I want that to be

a positive impression,” said Greg. “At Brand

Mortgage, the employees and I strive to do

the right thing with every decision we make.

We work hard and support each other and our

customers can see that.”

On top of Brand Mortgage’s strong work

ethic that keeps the company running strong,

Greg attributes much of their success to their

tie to the not-so-small anymore, but still

hometown bank, Brand Bank.

“Having the backing of The Brand

Banking Company with a strong and reliable

funding stream has been essential to our

success. Since 1905, Brand Bank has been

Brand Mortgage Thrives with Common

‘Cents’ Approach to Running a Business

Key leaders at Brand Mortgage such as

Mack Mullins, EVP Capital Markets;

Alex Koutouzis, President; and Stephanie

Kennedy, EVP Operations work closely with

Greg to keep the company running strong.