Board of Directors

Code of Business Conduct & Ethics

Board of Directors

Role of the Board

Our business and affairs are managed under the direction of our Board of Directors. While the Board is responsible for establishing broad corporate policies and overseeing our overall performance and direction, the Board is not involved in our day-to-day operations (other than those Board members who are also members of our management team).

Members of the Board

James A. Brodsky

Director since 2004

Member of the Compensation Committee

Member of Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

Mr. Brodsky is a partner in, and a founding member of, the law firm of Weiner Brodsky Kider PC in Washington, D.C., and has practiced law with that firm and its predecessor since 1977. Mr. Brodsky provides legal advice and business counsel to publicly-traded and privately-held national and regional residential mortgage lenders on secondary mortgage market transactions (including those involving Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae), mergers and acquisitions, asset purchases and sales, mortgage compliance issues and strategic business initiatives.

Prior to 1977, Mr. Brodsky was a Deputy Assistant Secretary with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. He also currently serves as General Counsel of the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association. Mr. Brodsky also is a director of Enterprise Community Investment, Inc., which invests in affordable housing and community development projects nationwide through public-private investments, as well as raises and invests private investor capital, develops affordable housing and provides lending products for the commercial and multifamily real estate sectors. Mr. Brodsky is also a former Chairman of the Board of each of the Montgomery County Maryland Housing Opportunities Commission and the Montgomery Housing Partnership.

Mr. Brodsky received a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center, an M.S. in electrical engineering from Columbia University and his undergraduate degree from Cornell University.

Laurie Goodman

Director since 2014

Chair of the Board

Member of the Audit Committee

Member of Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

Ms. Goodman is currently the Center Co-Director of the Housing Finance Policy Center at the Urban Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization dedicated to elevating the debate on social and economic policy. Ms. Goodman joined the Urban Institute in late 2013 from Amherst Securities Group, L.P., a boutique broker dealer specializing in securitized products, where she had been a Senior Managing Director since late 2008 leading a group known for its analysis of housing policy issues. Prior to her tenure at Amherst Securities, Ms. Goodman was head of Global Fixed Income Research and Manager of U.S. Securitized Products Research at UBS and its predecessor firms from July 1993 through November 2008. Prior to her tenure with UBS, Ms. Goodman spent ten years in senior fixed income research positions at Citicorp, Goldman Sachs, and Merrill Lynch. She was also a mortgage portfolio manager at Eastbridge Capital and a Senior Economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Ms. Goodman has an A.M. and Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University and a B.A. in mathematics from the University of Pennsylvania. She has published more than 200 articles in professional and academic journals and co-authored and co-edited five books. Ms. Goodman was inducted into the Fixed Income Analysts Hall of Fame in 2009.

Robin Josephs

Director since 2010

Chair of Compensation Committee

Member of Audit Committee

From 2005 to 2007, Ms. Josephs was a managing director of Starwood Capital Group L.P., a private equity firm specializing in real estate investments. From 1986 to 1996, Ms. Josephs was a senior executive with Goldman, Sachs & Co. serving in the real estate group of the investment banking division and, later, in the equity capital markets division. Ms. Josephs currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of iStar Inc., where she is Lead Director, Chair of the nominating and governance committee and a member of the compensation committee, QuinStreet Inc., a provider of performance marketing products and technologies, where she serves as Chair of the compensation committee and a member of the audit committee, Safety, Income & Growth Inc., an investor in commercial real estate ground leases and Starwood Real Estate Income Trust where she has been board member since 2018 serving on the audit committee. Ms. Josephs also served as a member of the Board of Directors of Plum Creek Timber Company, Inc. from 2003 until its sale to Weyerhaeuser Company in February 2016. Ms. Josephs is a trustee of the University of Chicago Cancer Research Foundation.

Ms. Josephs received her undergraduate degree from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an M.B.A. from Columbia University.

Craig L. Knutson

Director since 2017

Chief Executive Officer & President of MFA Financial, Inc.

Mr. Knutson has served as our Chief Executive Officer and President since August 2017. Prior thereto, Mr. Knutson served as our President and Chief Operating Officer from January 2014 to July 2017. Mr. Knutson served as our Executive Vice President from 2008 to 2013. From 2004 to 2007, Mr. Knutson served as Senior Executive Vice President of CBA Commercial, LLC, an acquirer and securitizer of small balance commercial mortgages. From 2001 to 2004, Mr. Knutson served as President and Chief Operating Officer of ARIASYS Inc., a software development company specializing in custom solutions for small to midsize businesses. From 1986 to 1999, Mr. Knutson held various progressive positions in the mortgage trading and mortgage finance departments of First Boston Corporation (later Credit Suisse), Smith Barney and Morgan Stanley. From 1981 to 1984, Mr. Knutson served as an Analyst and then Associate in the Investment Banking Department of E.F. Hutton & Company Inc.

Mr. Knutson holds an M.B.A. from Harvard University and an A.B. (magna cum laude) from Hamilton College.

Francis J. Oelerich III

Director since 2019

Chair of Audit Committee

Member of Compensation Committee

Mr. Oelerich has been a Managing Director of XMS Capital Partners, a global, independent financial services firm providing investment banking, asset management and merchant banking services, since 2018. Prior thereto, Mr. Oelerich was a Managing Director in the Mergers & Acquisitions Department of Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc. from 2008 to 2017. Prior to Deutsche Bank, Mr. Oelerich worked in investment banking for Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated from 1982 to 1984 and from 1986 to 2008, rising to the level of Managing Director.

Mr. Oelerich received an M.B.A. from Harvard University, where he was elected a George F. Baker Scholar and named a Loeb, Rhoades Fellow, and a B.B.A. (with high honors) from the University of Notre Dame.

Lisa Polsky

Director since 2020

Chair of Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

Member of Audit Committee

Ms. Polsky has served as a member of Deutsche Bank AG’s U.S. Board since 2016, and she is a member of the Board of Trustees of Guardian Life’s Variable Products Trust, where she chairs the audit committee. Ms. Polsky also served on the Board of Directors of Piper Jaffray from 2007 to 2016, where she chaired the audit committee and the compensation committee. She also recently served as a Senior Risk Advisor to each of AQR Capital Management LLC, an investment management firm, and Ultra Capital, a venture capital firm. Prior thereto, Ms. Polsky served as Chief Risk Officer at CIT, a financial holding company, from 2010 to 2016, and she was Chief Risk Officer of Morgan Stanley earlier in her career. Ms. Polsky began her career building derivative trading and hedge fund businesses at Citibank and Bankers Trust.

Ms. Polsky holds a B.S. in International Business and Economics from New York University.

Sheila A. Stamps

Director since 2021

Member of Compensation Committee

Member of Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

Ms. Stamps currently serves on the Board of Directors of Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc., a leading global provider of outsourced aircraft and aviation operating services, where she also serves as Chair of the Audit and Finance Committee, and Pitney Bowes Inc., a global shipping and mailing company that provides services to businesses and governments, where she also serves on the Audit and Executive Compensation Committees. Ms. Stamps also serves on the Board of CIT Group, Inc., a financial holding company, where she serves as a member of the Audit and Nominating & Governance Committees, as well as a member of the Board of CIT’s subsidiary, CIT Bank, N.A. Ms. Stamps was also recently named to Savoy Magazine’s 2021 Most Influential Black Corporate Directors.

From 2014 to 2018 Ms. Stamps served as a Commissioner and Audit Committee Chair on the Board of the New York State Insurance Fund, the state’s largest workers’ compensation insurance provider. From 2011 to 2012 she served as Executive Vice President at DBI, LLC, a private mortgage investment company. From 2008 to 2011 Ms. Stamps served as Director of Pension Investments and Cash Management at the New York State Common Retirement Fund, and from 2004 to 2005 she was a Fellow at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University. From 2003 to 2004, Ms. Stamps served as a Managing Director and Head of Relationship Management, Financial Institutions at Bank of America Corp. (formerly FleetBoston). From 1982 to 2003, she held a number of executive positions with Bank One Corporation (now JPMorgan), including Managing Director and Head of European Asset-Backed Securitization and Managing Director and Senior Originator of Asset-Backed Securitization.

Ms. Stamps has a B.S. in Management Sciences from Duke University and an MBA in Finance from the University of Chicago. She also earned a CERT Certificate in Cybersecurity Oversight from the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.

Richard C. Wald

Director since 2020

Member of Compensation Committee

Member of Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

Mr. Wald has served as Vice Chairman and a management (non-voting) member of the Board of Directors of Emigrant Bank, a privately held financial institution based in New York City, and its Vice Chairman, since 2012. In addition, Mr. Wald has served as Chief Regulatory Officer of Emigrant Bank since 2009 and Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of each of Emigrant Mortgage Company, and Emigrant Funding Corporation since 2011. Mr. Wald has also been an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Zicklin School of Business of Baruch College since 2013. Mr. Wald was an associate with the law Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver and Jacobson from 1986 to 1992 and was an Honors Program Attorney with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation from 1984 to 1986.

Mr. Wald received a J.D. from the Boston University School of Law and a B.A. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.