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Aminah Ambakisye

Our Feature Spotlight
Aminah Ambakisye
Quantitative Analyst
How long have you been with RiskSpan?
I have worked for RiskSpan for about 2 years.
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?

I am a quantitative analyst. I work with clients to validate their models. I perform statistical analyses and devise benchmarking and back-testing schemes for the models. I also prepare model validation reports and related, supporting technical documents.

What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Flexible, welcoming, and supportive
What are your favorite hobbies?
I like to bake, go shopping, play chess, and go swimming.
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
One thing on my bucket list is to visit every continent.
What do you like about our company culture?
I like that the company tries to connect its employees both to the company’s overall mission and to one another with initiatives like volunteer opportunities, as well as both virtual and in-person gatherings.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
Continuous learning. RiskSpan encourages us to learning new skills and make improvements on our work.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for RiskSpan
I had just graduated when I joined RiskSpan, so I did not have much experience outside of academia. My managers and colleagues have helped me gain new skills and experiences that I use during the validations. I have had exposure to different validation projects which has helped me gain a broader understanding of the mortgage industry.

Shengyun Mao

Shengyun Mao
Our Feature Spotlight
Shengyun Mao
Analyst
How long have you been with RiskSpan?
Two years.
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?

On the consulting side, I produce detailed reports and analysis mainly focused on CRT programs, acquisition profiles and foreclosed property expenses. Additionally, I expand my reporting area through diving into ad-hoc analysis on various trending topics.

I also work on several internal initiatives, including an OpenAir Billable Hour Tool, GSE’s Credit Report/Score Initiative, and Snowflake certification. I also engage in many other supporting tasks including data assessments, interviews, etc.

What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Robust, supportive and trustworthy.
What are your favorite hobbies?
Snowboarding, billiards, and board games.
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
Travel through the world. Visit the Seven Wonders of the World. (Four more to go!)
What do you like about our company culture?
I like it that Riskspan provides the opportunities for people across different departments to exchange ideas and learn from each other.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
The inclusiveness. It makes me feel warm and comfortable, and it drives an efficient and beneficial collaboration among the team members.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for RiskSpan
Here at Riskspan, I have significantly expanded my knowledge regarding the mortgage industry through extensive research and client interactions. Also, I have developed strong analytical skills by solving complex and time-sensitive challenges. Those incredible opportunities and experiences have allowed me to grow substantially within the past two years.

Anirudh Parmar

Anirudh-Parmar
Our Feature Spotlight
Anirudh Parmar
Tech lead
How long have you been with RiskSpan?
I joined RiskSpan in 2018 and have been part of the team for more than five years now.
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?
In my role at RiskSpan, I serve as the Infrastructure Manager. My responsibilities involve meticulously designing and implementing infrastructure solutions aligned with top industry standards. I advocate for and implement advanced security measures using Infrastructure as Code, ensuring optimized performance and adherence to best practices. Additionally, I orchestrate seamless large-scale system deployments within a DevOps framework, aligning engineering strategies to achieve overarching objectives successfully.
What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Three words that encapsulate RiskSpan would be innovative, collaborative, and forward-thinking.
What are your favorite hobbies?
My favorite hobbies are hiking, exploring new places, playing cricket and table tennis, I also take joy in continuous learning through audiobooks.
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
Experiencing the Northern Lights in Tromso, Norway is something I’m really looking forward to.
What do you like about our company culture?
What I admire most about our company culture is the emphasis on continuous growth and innovation. It fosters an environment where personal and team development are actively encouraged and supported.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
Among the company values, the commitment to innovation resonates with me the most. It aligns perfectly with my approach of continuously seeking and implementing cutting-edge solutions to drive efficiency and excellence.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for RiskSpan
Professionally, my journey at RiskSpan has been marked by significant growth. I’ve evolved by leaps and bounds in implementing DevOps culture and Infrastructure solutions, mastering automation techniques, contributing directly to the company’s resilience and operational efficiency.

Josh Miller

Our Feature Spotlight
Josh Miller
Data Analyst
How long have you been with RiskSpan?
I have been at RiskSpan since December 2021.
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?
As a Data Analyst on the consulting team at RiskSpan, my primary focus is on supporting the enterprise capital reporting team at Fannie Mae. In this capacity, I specialize in model performance tracking, ensuring that the financial models are delivering accurate and reliable results. I leverage my expertise in data analytics to provide insightful information for strategic decision-making. Additionally, I play a key role in data visualization using Tableau, translating complex data sets into visually compelling and easily understandable presentations.

On the RiskSpan side, I contribute to the development of accelerator tools, enhancing the efficiency of our processes. Simultaneously, I am engaged in cutting-edge AI research, exploring innovative approaches to further advance our analytical capabilities.

What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Motivated, Innovative, Supportive.
What are your favorite hobbies?
I am passionate about sports, including the 4 major American sports leagues and golf. I also really enjoy trivia.
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
Attend a Philadelphia Eagles Super Bowl game.
What do you like about our company culture?
I like that RiskSpan prioritizes teamwork and creates a collaborative and supportive atmosphere. I particularly value our shared motivation to continually improve and strive for excellence.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
RiskSpan’s value of inclusion, where the input of every team member is encouraged and valued.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for us
Here at RiskSpan, I have acquired a wealth of new knowledge, honed new abilities, and gained invaluable insights into the mortgage finance industry. This role has provided me with a solid foundation, setting the stage for ongoing professional growth and success.

Guanlin Chen

Our Feature Spotlight
Guanlin Chen
Senior Quantitative Analyst
How long have you been with RiskSpan?
Around 4 years
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?
As a Quant, I primarily develop and update our residential mortgage prepayment and credit default models to support a broader range of collateral types and to adapt to market changes. My responsibilities also include client portfolio analytics, cash flow analysis, and oversight and assessment of model performance on a weekly basis, benchmarking against other model vendors.
Additionally, I evaluate client portfolios in line with their investment, business development, and risk management purposes, offering tailored model tuning suggestions.
What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Inclusive, Innovative, Agile
What are your favorite hobbies?
Reading, Astrophotography, Ball games
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
Drive across the U.S. on Route 66
What do you like about our company culture?
I really appreciate the company’s inclusiveness, where everyone’s opinions are taken into account. The relatively flat organizational structure enhances smooth collaboration among colleagues and truly ignites a passion for work.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
Innovation resonates with me the most. RiskSpan constantly strives to incorporate new technologies to address challenges and optimize solutions in structured finance, aligning with my passion to keep our predictive models state-of-the-art.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for RiskSpan
Since joining the company, I’ve benefited immensely from the ample training materials provided, as well as the invaluable guidance from seasoned colleagues who have deep expertise in this domain. Their mentorship enabled me to quickly grasp the fundamentals of mortgage and structured finance. Furthermore, serving our wide-ranging client base has continuously challenged me, honing my ability to understand their specific needs and to deliver scientific and quantifiable solutions.

Priyank Shah

priyank_shah
Our Feature Spotlight
Priyank Shah
Tech Lead
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?
As a Tech Lead, my role involves overseeing the ETL process for the Edge platform in collaboration with two team members. Additionally, I manage Python models related to MSRs, CECL, and Allowance. My contributions span diverse areas, encompassing the implementation of new features, resolution of data-related concerns, formulation of data architectural designs, and the provision of agile solutions to address challenges encountered by internal users and clients.
What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Innovative, Determined, Forward-looking
What are your favorite hobbies?
Exploring regional breweries and craft beers (IPAs), Visiting places surrounded by woods and water, and Playing Chess.
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
HALO Sky Diving
What do you like about our company culture?
I appreciate the culture of inclusivity at Riskspan, where one’s opinions are valued. The flexibility in the work environment and the empowerment given to employees to explore diverse market technologies for crafting solutions are particularly appealing aspects of our company’s culture.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
I find the emphasis on “Innovation” resonating with me the most. I’m constantly driven to find creative solutions to complex problems and contribute to the development of cutting-edge data infrastructure. This value aligns well with my passion for staying at the forefront of technological advancements and pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in the realm of engineering.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for RiskSpan
My professional growth has been noteworthy. From refining data pipelines to orchestrating complex ETL processes, I’ve advanced my technical skills while also assuming managerial responsibilities. Moreover, I’ve successfully guided my team through intricate data challenges, fostering a collaborative environment that thrives on innovation and continuous improvement.

Mingjin Wu

Our Feature Spotlight
Mingjin Wu
Senior Data Analyst
 
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?
On the consulting team, I currently support a large Government Sponsored Enterprise with quality control on business operational execution, development of business requirements, and completion of software testing activities associated with the delivery of in-house applications and financial models. I also support clients with database and reporting dashboard migration to target state platforms, including cloud migration.

I have also been working on some internal initiatives, including proposing potential enhancements to the candidate data assessment review process and leading the design and development of the market pricing application which can provide dynamic insight on different types of loans.

What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Reliable, inspiring, Insightful
What are your favorite hobbies?
I enjoy all outdoor events including hiking, skiing, and paddling. I’m also a fan of board games. Recently I developed a new hobby, aquascaping for my betta fish and pet shrimps!
What is one thing on your Bucket List? 
Trips to see active volcanoes
What do you like about our company culture?
RiskSpan fosters an inclusive culture where diversity is embraced and individuals from various backgrounds are respected and valued. Also, the company promotes a spirit of collaboration where everyone willingly supports and assists one another. Individuals are eager to share their knowledge and skills to help others succeed.
Which company values resonate with you the most?
The community and belonging create a sense of connection, fostering a supportive and inclusive work environment. We also have a mentorship program that provides additional support. In addition, I felt my voice can always be heard and valued.
Describe how you’ve grown professionally since you started working for RiskSpan
I had just graduated when I joined RiskSpan — my first full-time job. I have learned a lot from my managers and colleagues. The most impressive growth I have is from the wide exposure to different consulting projects which helps me gain a broader understanding of various domains and subjects in the mortgage industry. Through interaction with clients, I have become more adept at project management, efficient communication, and high-quality deliverables to meet clients’ various needs.

Sin Lee

Our Feature Spotlight
Sin Lee
Manager
 
The AAPI region is so large and diverse. We want to shine a light on the individual cultures of the region. Can you share a bit about yourself and your cultural heritage?
I was born in South Korea and came to the states when I was 13. Adapting to the new country and culture was challenging during my teenage years, but now having experienced both worlds, it has allowed me to appreciate the diversity this country has, my family and everything else around me. My heritage is Korean, and we still speak Korean in our home and I don’t foresee this will change in the future.
How did you find your way to RiskSpan?
I used to work at Wells Fargo Corporate Trust Services in the legacy RMBS. I wanted to explore different aspect of the MBS universe and challenge myself on different consulting projects with technical skills and critical thinking. When the opportunity came up, I followed through and I don’t regret my decision.
What is your Role at RiskSpan?
I am currently a Manager of one person team. This is my first year of being a manager, so there are a lot of new responsibilities to take. I hope to continue great relationship with our team going forward, so we can all cooperate and reach our goals.
How has your heritage shaped the person you are today?
My heritage, which is my parents shaped who I am today. During my teenage years, both of my parents were hard working blue-collar workers and I have never heard them complaining about the harsh situation they were in. They sacrificed everything they had to keep us educated and well-fed. Over the many years of seeing them, it has shaped me to appreciate everything that happens whether it’s good or bad. Of course there are bad days, but realizing they had gone through even worse situations, I appreciate where I am, who I am and move on.
Do you or your family have any traditions that are especially important to you?
One of the very important traditions is the Korean New Year. We bow down to our parents to receive words of wisdom and gather for rice cake soup. Eating the rice cake soup is a tradition to grant the people good luck for the year and gain one year of age. This soup is one of my favorite dishes.
What at RiskSpan do you find most interesting?
Work and People. Over the years I’ve spent at RiskSpan it was very interesting to see various products and services that RiskSpan offers and there are always valuable skills learned after each project. There were times when I struggled with certain projects, but I always found an opportunity to learn, and am grateful to work with very talented and intelligent team who are willing to help at all costs. Teamwork at RiskSpan works.
What does AAPI Heritage Month mean to you?
AAPI Heritage reminds me to recognize all the contributions and influences that people have given to these communities and country. We all have different culture, so it’s great to celebrate and cherish who we are.
This past year, there has been an exponential rise in hate-filled actions towards the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. What does showing up to support the AAPI community mean to you?
I never understood why someone would be so violent without any reason or just because they were AAPIs. It’s just not tolerable. I personally had encountered few situations when I was in middle school, just because I was Asian and couldn’t speak English. It may only be one fun moment for the offender but leaves an unerasable memory for the others. It is important to point out racism is wrong, so the world becomes a better place for everyone and future generations.
What would be your advise to young men and women from the AAPI community?
Take pride of who you are and celebrate the AAPI Heritage Month. It is a great time to look back where we’re from and appreciate prior generations because they have paved smooth paths for us to walk and run. Also we’re all living in the ‘Land of Opportunities’, so strive for the goals and live your life fully.

Dien Luu

Our Feature Spotlight
Dien Luu
Director, Consulting Services
 
The AAPI region is so large and diverse. We want to shine a light on the individual cultures of the region. Can you share a bit about yourself and your cultural heritage?
was born in Vietnam and came to the US when I was 7. I’m of Chinese and Vietnamese heritage, and various aspects of both cultures are part of who I am today, particularly an appreciation for family, community, and food!
How did you find your way to RiskSpan?
I had worked at Fannie Mae for over 20 years, in various roles and organizations, always looking for opportunities to enhance my technical skills and domain knowledge, solve problems, and grow professionally. My resume looks like that of a consultant and I been thinking about consulting for a while. When RiskSpan approached me with a consulting opportunity I jumped at it.
What is your Role at RiskSpan?
I’m a Director of Consulting, managing a team of four consultants who have projects at Fannie and Freddie. Besides the administrative stuff, a goal of mine is to help the team grow professionally in part by sharing my expertise and have regular meetings where the team members discuss what they’re working on, the challenges they’re facing, and we try to help each other with ideas and information. I also am engaged full time on a project with my client at Freddie.
How has your heritage shaped the person you are today?
I wouldn’t say these traits are exclusive to Chinese or Vietnamese culture, and they’re probably more directly attributable to my mother, but I do feel the connection to those two cultures my pride in my work, my sense of obligation to help the community succeed, whether it’s my project team or a wider community, and appreciation of diversity, of people, culture, ideas, and did I mention food?
Do you or your family have any traditions that are especially important to you?
We celebrate the Chinese (and Vietnamese) New Year by gathering at my mom’s for home-cooked dishes and giving red envelopes with money to the kids. The Mid-Autumn Festival is also observed by my family and includes having mooncakes and tea. As with all traditions, it’s really about being with the people you love.
What at RiskSpan do you find most interesting?
I think it’s great that RiskSpan offers a great product in its award-winning Edge Platform and also offers client services, both supported by deeply talented, knowledgeable, and experienced professionals.
What does AAPI Heritage Month mean to you?
Culture is part of who we are, and while we all share the values and traditions that are uniquely American, it’s also good to celebrate diversity and the things that are unique about each of us.
This past year, there has been an exponential rise in hate-filled actions towards the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. What does showing up to support the AAPI community mean to you?
I think speaking out about racist actions, words, or expressions, whether they’re micro-aggressions or are direct, and especially violent interactions, is important. We, all of us, need to point out racism when we see it and make it clear that it will not be tolerated and will be subject to consequences.
What would be your advise to young men and women from the AAPI community?
Revel and take pride in your AAPI heritage, and don’t let anyone, including yourself, other you. We are all Americans and should take advantage of the opportunities this great country offers to fully live, be ourselves, expect to be treated and appreciated like everyone else, and contribute to our communities and our country.

Thank you Dien!


Szymon Steczek

Our Feature Spotlight
Szymon Steczek
Model Validation Analyst
 
What does your role at RiskSpan entail?
As a model validation analyst, I work with clients to analyze the methodologies, assumptions, and limitations of various machine learning models.

I apply mathematical frameworks to enhance the business decision making process with data-driven metrics. I develop and implement predictive models and measure the effectiveness of existing business solutions using statistical tools and data visualization techniques.

How long have you been with RiskSpan?
10 months.
What 3 words best describe RiskSpan?
Growth, Trust, Innovation
What are your favorite hobbies?
Weightlifting during the week. Then on weekends, I enjoy taking spontaneous backpacking adventures and playing extreme sports.
What is one thing on your Bucket List?
Hop a cargo ship with a friend and “hitchhike” to Asia!
What do you like about RiskSpan’s culture?
I appreciate that I have been challenged since day one. Every project is a learning opportunity. Happy hours are fun, too, as is raiding the fridge throughout the day!
Which of the firm’s values resonate with you the most?
I’m pleased with the individual interest RiskSpan takes in each employee and in my development. If I have a different view on a topic, I know I can voice it. My supervisors are direct and supportive.
Which of the firm’s values resonate with you the most?
I proved to myself that a theoretical knowledge comes in very handy in the model validation area. It allows me to identify the mathematical weaknesses of the predictors and suggest the improvements that increase the robustness of the models. I’ve been exposed to a broad range of industry best practices; I learnt a lot about the most important machine learning algorithms and became a much better programmer. I was able to apply this knowledge to solve harder problems more optimally.

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