Erica G. Courtney
Erica G. Courtney is U.S. Army veteran having served in various positions to include; military police, scout helicopter pilot and paratrooper. As a trailblazer, she graduated number one in her cadet class, was part of the first group of women to go Cavalry and the first to graduate the Advanced Armor Cavalry Course. Her staff work included flight operations, senior logistical, contracting and budget management positions in charge of $750M in equipment, 200 million-dollar budgets and 2,500 people in the most deployable units in peacetime and in war. Upon leaving active duty after 14-years of service in 2005, she worked as a corporate executive and then founded a company focused on government business development growing on average of 45% year-over-year for five years. Erica then sold the company in 2014 and founded 2020vet, Inc. centered around supply chain management and engineering services. She re-commissioned in 2013 in the U.S. Army Reserve where she was a cadet instructor and currently serves as a Major on the Joint Chiefs of Staff working on Women, Peace and Security DoD policy and strategy as a NATO certified Gender Advisor. She is currently on the Board of Directors for Women Impacting Public Policy and a member of NAWRB’s Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Council. Additionally, she is a Commissioner appointed by the Governor to the California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls representing approximately 20M residents. She is co-founder of Zulu Time, Inc. which is a veteran transition center focused on community integration ultimately providing the veteran a livelihood and sense of purpose.
Formerly, Erica was a Commissioner representing more than 650K women in Florida, was a Board member of an independent K-8 school, and a Past Board President of the U.S. Veterans Business Alliance-the longest running national veteran organization focused on veterans and entrepreneurship. Erica has received numerous awards to include being named as a woman with the leadership background and ability to change the world by Oprah and the White House Project, 40 under 40 doing good things in business and the community by the Jacksonville, FL Business Journal, a 2015 Woman of Influence by the Silicon Valley Business Journal, 2016 National SROTC Cadet Instructor of the Year, 2016 nominated change maker by the White House Summit on the United State of Women, 2017 Small Business Innovation award by AT&T and a Veteran Leader by NAWRB in 2019. Erica has a B.S. in Communications from the University of Hawaii, an Executive MBA from Florida International University and EMBA program internships in India and China.
Desirée Patno is the CEO and President of Women in the Housing and Real Estate Ecosystem (NAWRB) and Desirée Patno Enterprises, Inc. (DPE), Advisor for AmicusBrain Innovations Inc., CSO of Zulu Time and a National Speaker. Through her relationships with senior leadership executives, government officials and industry experts, Desiree and her team assists the development and strengthening of small businesses for sustainability
Desiree Patno provides small businesses specialized coaching and financial literacy training, including innovative ways to access capital, obtain government contracts and secure one’s resources. The NAWRB Small Business Sustainability Care Package addresses five main elements we can all utilize to help small businesses, including cybersecurity, insurance, vetting financial institutions, payroll alert/assistance and small claims accountability.
With the annual Women in the Housing Ecosystem Report (WHER), NAWRB is combining the resources and expertise of key players in the economic ecosystem to build a dynamic resource platform for future generations. The NAWRB 2019 WHER provides the most diverse coverage of the housing ecosystem with over sixty resources and six volumes: Diversity & Inclusion; Homeownership; Women-Owned Businesses; STEM; Aging Population; and Family Offices with a gender lens perspective.
Desirée resides on the Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP) Leadership Advisory Council and Enterprising Women Advisory Board. The Council for Inclusion in Financial Services (CIFS) gave Desiree the Trailblazer Award in 2018, which honors influencers whose diversity and inclusion initiatives are transforming the industry and community. In 2017, she was named the Highest-Ranking Woman and 4th Overall Top Real Estate Influencer to Follow by Entrepreneur.com, and presented On the Margins of the 72nd U.N. General Assembly, The Intersection between Gender Diversity, Innovation and Economic Sustainability. In 2016, she was honored with HousingWire’s Women of Influence Award and was selected as the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Women in Business Champion of the Year.
Desiree is the Publisher of NAWRB Magazine—winner of the APEX Award for Publication Excellence in 2015 -2018 and is a monthly contributor to RISMedia’s Real Estate Magazine, National Mortgage Professional Magazine and various industry publications.