Empowering and Leading Your Team as a Diverse Broker/Owner – (With Shawn Williams) – Episode 104

Posted February 22, 2022

Shawn Williams, a former Division III basketball point guard, developed a winning mindset early. As the Founder and President of Fortis Mortgage and Ailen Capital, he has helped thousands of families in Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, become homeowners or refinance their homes.

As a Founder of Black Men Ventures, a non-profit that provides access to capital and networking to black male founders with less than a million dollars in revenue, and as the Founder of Kid From Greene, a non-profit that provides transportation services for local at-risk youth, Shawn is deeply embedded in the community. A certified Eric Thomas & Associates LLC speaker, he speaks passionately about goal-setting, mentorship, entrepreneurship, and various mortgage-related topics and sits on the board for the Maryland Mortgage Bankers and Brokers Association, Inc. and Juice 4 Life, Inc. 

In 2005, after spending time with NPR and telecommunications companies, including Verizon, Shawn was introduced to the mortgage industry by his best friend after the death of his grandmother. Following the 2008 crisis, he started his own branch and rose to management in 2011, then to District Manager and then Executive Leader. In 2018, Shawn decided it was time to become a Broker/Owner, fueled by his passion for breaking down barriers to homeownership. 

Shawn leads a small but powerful team that keeps growing. Six months ago, he hired a new Loan Specialist, and he works closely with his mother, an Executive Assistant, two Client Success/Services professionals, and a Business Development Manager. He designed front-end and back-end systems using human-friendly technology, including personalized BombBomb videos that go over disclosures with borrowers via video; this personalized touch results in high Google Reviews from clients regarding how efficient the process is. 

For new Broker/Owners, those thinking about starting their own brokerage, or those who are reinventing themselves, Shawn recommends, “People first, money will follow.” Plan some procedures, invest in education for borrowers, and be fair and humane in everything you do.


  • 2:00: Intro
  • 8:00: Minority Entrepreneurship
  • 27:00: Relationships Are Key
  • 29:30: The Right Teamwork, Tech, and Systems
  • 40:00: Reinventing Yourself: Advice for Success

This episode is sponsored by Brokers Are Better.

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