WHO WE ARE
Strategic Vantage is a public relations, marketing and social media agency passionately serving companies in the
mortgage banking and financial services industries. Our company is composed of seasoned executives with many
years of experience working in the world of real estate finance, technology and banking. Our specialty is in exceeding
client expectations. And we do that, daily.
Our agency is headquartered in Miami, Florida, and our staff is based throughout the country,
ready to serve customers nationwide.
Strategic Vantage is staffed by a team of the best and the brightest, ensuring that clients don’t have to spend
time training newcomers. The team’s cumulative decades in mortgage banking, financial services and technology
are clearly evident, as are their many years of professional writing, marketing and media relations experience.
WHO WE SERVE
Companies in Mortgage Banking & Financial Services
President and CEO
Rosalie Berg founded Strategic Vantage in 2002 and grew the company into one of the largest marketing, public relations and social media agencies serving the mortgage industry. She has more than 24 years of marketing, public relations and social media experience, dedicating 20 of those years to the real estate and housing finance industries.
A nationally recognized mortgage industry leader, Rosalie has a long track record of conceptualizing and implementing strategic marketing and PR campaigns that have led to double-digit revenue growth and lucrative company sales. She recently received the “Sales, Marketing & PR Trailblazer Award” by Progress In Lending Association, and has been listed among the mortgage industry’s “Most Powerful Women” by National Mortgage Professional and “The Most Powerful Women in Fintech” by Progress In Lending Association. She has also been featured on the cover of Mortgage Women Magazine.
Rosalie is actively involved in client accounts at Strategic Vantage, overseeing all agency work and assisting in the creation and execution of marketing, public relations and social media campaigns.
Prior to founding Strategic Vantage, Rosalie worked as Vice President of Marketing for mortgage technology provider OpenClose Technologies. She has held executive marketing positions at Oracle® consulting firm Dataforce Corporation and packaged software provider Expert Software (now Activision®). At the public relations agency Publicis Sanchez & Levitan, her clients included Absolut Vodka, Lennar Homes, Marshalls and Seagram’s. Rosalie has also worked at Mercer Management Consulting doing analysis for Fortune 500 companies.
Rosalie received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Brown University, and resides in Miami, Florida.
Mary McGarity expertly manages the public relations and marketing needs of agency clients. She has more than 20 years of experience serving the mortgage and financial services industry. Prior to joining Strategic Vantage in 2011, she was a longtime contributor to Mortgage Banking magazine, authoring articles on a wide range of topics. Prior to that, she worked for several years as a senior reporter at the Mortgage Bankers Association.
Mary began her career on Wall Street covering futures markets for a large investment bank. She later worked in New York as an energy reporter for Telerate Inc., a Dow Jones company, and has served as the Washington correspondent for a Dealers Digest newsletter, covering mortgage securities.
Mary completed the Commodities Futures Trading Commission certification course, and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English from the State University of New York at Albany. She currently resides in Connecticut.
Sample Published Articles
Loyal to Lenders
A Pioneer in Loss Mitigation
Warren Lutz actively manages the accounts of agency clients in the mortgage and financial services industries. He is an experienced marketing and public relations executive, with proven experience in the creation of websites, email campaigns, brochures, press releases, articles and much more.
Prior to joining the agency in 2009, Warren was a professional writer and journalist, authoring hundreds of articles for consumer and trade publications, newsletters and websites, including Mortgage Banking magazine, Realtor.com, Commercial Investment Real Estate, Urban Land, Banking Strategies, SNL Financial and Property Protection Report.
Warren is a former Managing Editor at Inman News Features, a nationally syndicated real estate news service, where he edited the work of nationally syndicated real estate columnists and penned his own column that ran in news outlets such as The Los Angeles Times and the Wall Street Journal Online. He began his career as a newspaper reporter and has won several statewide and national reporting awards covering business, health, government, legal and social issues, and the environment.
Warren is a graduate of San Francisco State University and resides in the San Francisco Bay Area, where he is a licensed Realtor.
Sample Published Articles
Like a Rolling StoneHill
Navigating the New Compliance Landscape
Mortgage Professional America
May 3, 2013
The New Borrower Microscope
A PPE for the Times
Sam Garcia plays a key role at Strategic Vantage as a Publicist. He is a critical liaison with the press, ensuring the effective communication of client initiatives. Sam leverages the deep knowledge he has gained after having worked 20 years in mortgage lending and 20 years as a reporter and publisher for the mortgage industry to guide agency clients with their public relations, marketing and social media campaigns.
Sam gained deep experience in mortgage lending during his career. He was the owner of the Dallas-based mortgage brokerage Nations Mortgage Co. and the founding partner of KPG Financial, a Dallas-based wholesale lender. Then in 1998 he started MortgageDaily.com, an online, subscription-based trade journal that over the years became a source of critical mortgage statistics and information for journalists and industry participants. He oversaw all aspects of the news operation and personally authored thousands of articles important to real estate finance.
Sam’s unique career path has provided him with the ideal set of skills to help firms within the mortgage and financial services sectors raise their profiles. He understands how to capture the interest of a reporter and improve clients’ social media effectiveness. He’s an expert at utilizing email, social media and publicity to generate interest.
Sam studied business at the University of North Texas and resides in the Orange County, California area.
As Account Supervisor, Henry Drennan specializes in overseeing and executing effective public relations, social media and marketing campaigns for clients in the banking and financial services industries. He leverages his deep industry experience in everything he does, from securing sought-after press coverage, to implementing results-driven marketing and social media campaigns.
Prior to joining Strategic Vantage in 2011, Henry was co-owner of a commercial brokerage company dealing with small business loans. His company later focused on originating residential mortgages, including all types of conventional and government loans. During this time, he became nationally registered as a mortgage loan officer, with four individual state licenses as well. Henry has extensive experience with FHA, conventional, streamline, and VA loans in addition to being an accomplished writer.
Henry received a Bachelor of Science in Mass Communications and Psychology from Middle Tennessee State University. His minors include English and Industrial and Organizational Psychology. Henry resides in Georgia.
Angie LaBarthe effectively manages the agency’s operations and oversees core administrative processes with skill and precision. She also assists with marketing and public relations projects, tracking key details and ensuring immaculate follow-up with account executives, vendors, advertising reps and other third parties.
Prior to joining Strategic Vantage, she held key administrative and support roles in publishing and events enterprises. Angie is also a professional voice actor who has done voiceover work for many B2B and B2C clients. Angie earned her B.A. in Communications from the University of Washington and lives in Meridian, Idaho.
Senior Marketing Specialist
Helen Tongai is a seasoned marketing executive with two decades of experience working in the mortgage industry. She is responsible for developing the marketing strategy for agency clients and managing the implementation of marketing programs.
Helen spent eight years as the marketing and communications manager for Freddie Mac, where she led multiple marketing initiatives including the agency’s brand management strategy. She has also served for almost two years as a marketing compliance officer of Finance of America, providing her invaluable knowledge of regulatory requirements for mortgage marketing. Helen earned her B.A. in Marketing from Cambridge International College and lives in Frisco, Texas.
George Yacik joined the agency as our senior writer. He has extensive experience in our industry, having covered the residential mortgage business for nearly 25 years.
He is a former vice president of SMR Research Corporation in New Jersey, where he was the lead research analyst and principal author of industry studies on residential and subprime mortgages, home equity loans, credit cards, personal bankruptcy and consumer credit risk.
George has written for many industry publications, including Mortgage Banking magazine, National Mortgage News, Progress in Lending, Mortgage Orb and National Mortgage Professional, as well as many professional and consumer financial publications. He also has many years’ experience working for several industry-related marketing and public relations companies. He is a former editor of American Banker and began his career at The Bond Buyer.
George earned his undergraduate degree in English/Journalism from Rutgers University in New Jersey and a professional graduate certificate in Corporate Finance from Sacred Heart University.
He lives in Connecticut.
Director of Communications
With over 20 years in the financial services and mortgage industry, Mike Murray brings great depth of knowledge to each agency account he manages.
Mike’s tenure with Strategic Vantage dates back to 2011. Prior to that, he spent 12 years working for the Mortgage Bankers Association as editorial manager of online communications and as writer for MBA NewsLink and Real Estate Finance Today. Mike also contributed articles to Mortgage Banking magazine and hosted a public affairs program, This Month in Housing, heard on local Washington, D.C. radio stations.
Mike has worked in loan production and loan counseling positions for Navy Federal Credit Union, Pentagon Federal Credit Union and ComNet Mortgage, a branch of First Commonwealth Bank.
Mike graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English from the College of William and Mary, and resides in Maryland.