Angelo Mozilo, chairman and CEO of Countrywide Financial Corporation, has been honored with the National Housing Conference (NHC) 2004 Housing Person of the Year Award. Each year in Washington, D.C., NHC honors a person or organization that has contributed significantly to the goal of increased affordable housing and strong, healthy communities throughout the nation. Mozilo was chosen in recognition of his long-standing commitment to reducing the barriers to homeownership for lower-income and minority individuals and families.
Mozilo co-founded Countrywide in 1969 and has since grown the company into a global diversified financial services provider. Countrywide's House America affordable lending program, initiated in 1992, has been responsible for more than $245 billion in residential financing to minorities, low-income borrowers and individuals who live in underserved communities. In 2003, Countrywide expanded its commitment to fund a total of $600 billion in home loans through 2010, and its comprehensive approach includes education and outreach, and accounts for the company's position as one of the leading lenders to African-Americans and Hispanics.
Angelo Mozilo is a former president of the Mortgage Bankers Association and continues to serve on its Board of Directors. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the National Housing Endowment, the philanthropic arm of the National Association of Home Builders, and serves on the Board of the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. Countrywide is a member of the S&P 500, Fortune 500, Forbes 500, and employs more than 35,000 individuals at more than 550 locations across the nation and abroad. Mozilo recently celebrated his 50th year in the mortgage banking industry and the 35th anniversary of Countrywide Financial Corporation.
Mozilo's most recent achievement came on April 15 in Washington, D.C. when he was inducted into the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans as a lifetime member. The association honors those who have overcome adversity to achieve remarkable success and boasts 585 prominent members. Many are well-known Americans, including entertainer Carol Burnett, former Sen. Robert J. Dole, boxing legend George Foreman, Reverend Billy Graham, entrepreneur H. Wayne Huizenga, actor James Earl Jones and Secretary of State Colin Powell. Members of the Horatio Alger Association mentor young people and sponsor more than $5 million in need-based scholarships, which are awarded annually to high school seniors who have proven their ability to overcome childhood adversities and modest beginnings. To date, Countrywide Financial Corporation has donated more than $200,000 to the work of the association.
Formal ceremonies in Washington, D.C. were held in April to honor the 10 new Horatio Alger Association Award winners and induct them as lifetime members. In addition, a series of events were held to bring the award winners together along with more than 100 high school seniors from around the nation, who received Horatio Alger need-based college scholarships.