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Board of Directors

Desirée Patno
President & CEO
Desirée Patno is founder and CEO of both Desirée Patno Enterprises, Inc. (DPE), and National Association of Women in Real Estate Businesses (NAWRB), the only national trade association representing women-owned businesses Specializing in the Housing Economy (SHE is Changing Real Estate). With more than 20 years of experience, Patno brings insider and “heels on the ground” knowledge to her mission of promoting women-owned businesses within the industry.  A hands-on broker of the day-to-day management of DPE, interior designer and investor, she manages the intricate details of hundreds of properties each year. Through NAWRB, she advocates for the increased utilization of women-owned businesses and mentors female entrepreneurs for future successful business ownership. She has authored several articles published in industry and women magazines, including NAWRB’s N Magazine. Patno is on the Executive Advisory Board for Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP), Enterprising Women and Equator. Earlier this year, she was also featured in DSNews, “5 Minutes with Desirée Patno”. In 2012, she was nominated as one of HousingWire’s 30 Most Influential Women in the Housing Economy, and the award winner of Enterprising Women of the Year. A California native, she has been married for 21 years and is the proud mother of four boys.

Melva Wagner  
Government Relations Chair
Melva Wagner is the Owner and President of Melco, Inc., a real estate and construction management company in Key West, Fla. With more than 35 years of experience in all areas of asset management, Melva is a team leader of 15 real estate professionals. As a Presidential Appointee during the President George H.W. Bush Administration in 1989, Melva assisted minority- and women-owned small businesses with obtaining contracts through the federal government. Melco, Inc., recently received Small Business Administration (SBA) 8(a) certification, enabling the company to be awarded sole source contracts through the federal government.

Elizabeth Goodchild
N Magazine Chair
Elizabeth Goodchild has been licensed in real estate since 1989 and is the Broker and Owner of Weichert Realtors Goodchild Homes since 2008, an independent franchise of Weichert Realtors Affiliates. She leads her team of 40 realtors selling homes in the Chicagoland area and runs most of Weichert Relocation’s moves. Goodchild is Minority and Women-Owned Certified by the Chicago Minority Supplier Development Council and National Women’s Business Enterprise.
Voted as one of the “Top Realtors in the Chicagoland Area” by Chicago magazine in 2011, she holds a CPA degree, MBA, and a number of real estate designations: ABR, CDPE, CRP, CRB, CRS, GRI, and SRES. Before her life as a Broker/Owner, she was the CFO for Chicago for eight years, held financial roles at Motorola and McDonald’s Corporation, and still acts as adjunct for Lake Forest Graduate School of Management in courses like Financial Accounting and Leading a Sales Force Management. Goodchild is a mother to Grace (12) and twin boys Darien and Daniel (9), and wife to Broker Associate David at Weichert.

Ingrid Beckles  
Regulatory & Policy Chair

Ingrid Beckles is the Founder and CEO of The Beckles Collective, LLC. Beckles is a key figure in housing finance and policy, with a unique and holistic combination of 20-plus years of diverse mortgage experience in credit policy, operations, risk management, and servicing. She is best known for her role as Senior Vice President of Default Asset Management for Freddie Mac from 2003 to 2010. In that role, she was responsible for the structuring, oversight and leadership of Freddie Mac’s Default Asset Management Division. During the housing crisis in 2009, Ms. Beckles worked intensely with the regulators (FHFA), the Treasury Department, members of Congress, and the New Administration to ensure that Freddie Mac’s pre-conservator expertise was communicated for proper consideration in developing the New Administration’s Making Home Affordable Mortgage Program.
Beckles is a member of the National Institute of Housing Strategy, the National Mortgage Banker’s Association, the National Association of Professional Women and the Gersham Lerhman Group. She is a long time executive board member of the Family Health and Birth Center and the DC Youth Orchestra, both based in Washington, D.C. In 2010, Beckles was recognized by Black Enterprise as one of the 75 Most Powerful Women in Corporate America. She was also profiled in the same year in Women of Color Magazine. She holds a B.S. in Accounting & Technology Management from the University of Maryland. She also has received Executive Certificates from Harvard, MIT, and the Kellogg School at Northwestern University.

Dianne Langston
Membership & Events Chair

Dianne Langston hails from Northern California with 29 years experience in the real estate industry. She is the owner of Quality Real Estate Services, Inc., and has worked extensively in REO and residential resale. Langston is a huge Miami Heat fan.

Heidi Robinson
Board Member
Heidi Robinson, with Thunderbird Real Estate in Santa Cruz County, Calif., has over seven years of professional experience. Heidi prides herself on her extensive knowledge of a multitude of real estate segments. Heidi is a founding member of the CalWest REO Team, a very successful group with diverse experience in all aspects of REO property management disposition. In addition, Heidi’s knowledge of the REO industry continues to develop through her commitment to education at industry functions and conferences. Heidi brings over 20 years of experience in organizing community events, including producing and directing theatrical projects for schools, recreation centers and community theaters. Heidi’s leadership qualities were recently recognized by her local real estate board through her participation as a speaker on an REO Agent educational panel. Heidi’s active involvement in a number of industry related activities will support her efforts and dedication to bringing new services to NAWRB.

Renee Smith 
Board Member

Attorney Renee Marie Smith is a 15-year real estate industry expert; author of My Short Sale Guru’s Guide listed on, and Host of Fox29 TV’s 2012 Short Sale Guru Show. In 2007, Renee opened her own real estate firm and in 2009, she founded the statewide title company, Smith & Associates, to be an advocate for discouraged homeowners. She has counseled thousands of short sale participants and her company has handled in excess of a thousand short sales. She has been a guest speaker at conventions around the country, as well as, radio including on KLAV 1230am radio’s four-part short sale seminar in Las Vegas. She is nationally published by numerous magazines and blogs including NAWRB’s N Magazine, Palm Beach Woman, and Women’s Council of Realtors PB quarterly. Her second book My Short Sale Guru’s Guide for Real Estate Professionals to Empower and Invigorate Sales was released in January 2013. Smith is shaping the short sale landscape and we expect to see her influence on the national real estate industry to continue to increase.

Yuri Blanco
Board Member

Yuri Blanco is the Broker snd Owner of Idaho Homes and obtained her real estate license in October 2004. Her real estate career began with RE/MAX Advantage as a new construction specialist managing and selling new construction homes in Caldwell, Idaho. The subdivision she manages has 279 homes and she sold out the community in less than a year. After that she was awarded three other communities for the same builder in the Meridian, Idaho, area.
With the shift in the market in late 2006, Blanco turned to short sales and REOs, she was successfully able to negotiate short sales for many homeowners in need and had a 95 percent success rate closing the short sale. She started to market to asset management companies and got her first opportunity with a outsourcing vendor for Fannie Mae direct. She continues to strive for excellence and looks forward to continuing to grow. 

Brandy Nelson
Board Member
Brandy Nelson was featured as N Magazine’s CEO Center/fold in 2012’s March/April issue because of her passion and dedication as a top ranked residential and commercial broker in the Palm Springs and Desert cities of California. In addition, she is 2012’s Roaring Twenty Entrepreneur of the Year in Recognition of the formation of Red Top Realty, a women-owned business that offers the full spectrum of real estate services. Nelson is also with KW Commercial and Keller Williams Realty. She has managed multi-millions in building acquisitions and dispositions, leasing, building renovation, and tenant improvements. She is active in the commercial real estate community, on the agent leadership council with Keller Williams, and on the Board of the Women Council of Realtors as Membership Chair. She is constantly striving to improve and grow her business and community around her.