ALTA Elects O’Donnell as President

October 29, 2019

ALTA announced that Mary O’Donnell has been installed as president for the 2019-2020 year.

“I am fortunate and honored to shepherd a growing, motivated membership base of title insurance industry experts who protect the property rights of American homebuyers on a daily basis,” said O’Donnell, CEO and president of Westcor Land Title Insurance Co. in Maitland, Fla. “Steering this ship of more than 6,400 members, which has grown almost 120 percent in the past decade, is a new and exciting challenge. I look forward to engaging with ALTA’s Board, staff and membership on our latest slate of strategic priorities.”

ALTA’s 2020 strategic priorities include helping members:

  • Find solutions to protect their customers’ money.
  • Prepare for privacy laws and regulations.
  • Prepare for digital closings.
  • Tell their story inside and outside the industry to describe the people who make up the title insurance industry and the value they provide.
  • Engage with relevant agencies focused on federal housing finance policy, including GSEs.
  • Develop and retain talent.

“The coming year will be full of hurdles, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution,” O’Donnell said. “Real estate wire fraud and mortgage closing scams are ever-evolving and continue to keep our members on guard. This summer, ALTA founded the Coalition to Stop Real Estate Wire Fraud to educate consumers and legislators about the worrying extent of the growing problem; in the coming year, we will promote awareness, best practices and public policy to protect our customers’ funds that are transferred during real estate transactions. ALTA will work hard to develop industry principles for federal or state data privacy regulations and help our members understand the impact of any new data privacy laws. ALTA is also prepared to identify the benefits and risks associated with digital closings and collaborate with industry stakeholders to help adoption of this process. We have a lot of work to over the next year, and we’re ready to tackle it.”  

O’Donnell becomes the first woman from the Underwriters Executive Section to become ALTA's president and is the fifth female to hold the honor. It also is the first time ALTA has had back-to-back women presidents. O'Donnell follows Cynthia Durham Blair NTP.

“Mary has the wide-ranging expertise and steady hand that’s needed to help ALTA and its members prepare for an evolving market and develop products to meet the needs of their customers,” said ALTA CEO Diane Tomb. “She is known throughout the title insurance industry as a smart, collaborative problem-solver who will empower our members to think differently and embrace the innovation necessary to succeed.”

O’Donnell’s full biography can be found on ALTA’s website.

The 11-member ALTA Board of Governors is responsible for promoting the industry, creating association policy, managing the financial health of the association and ensuring the overall welfare of the association. Members of ALTA’s 2019-2020 Board of Governors include:

  • President: Mary O’Donnell (Westcor Land Title Insurance Co.)
  • President-elect: William Burding Jr. NTP (Orange Coast Title Co.)
  • Treasurer: Don Kennedy (First American Title Insurance Co.)
  • Chair of Finance Committee: Richard H. Welshons (DCA Title Co.)
  • Agents Section Chair: Jack Rattikin III (Rattikin Title Co.)
  • Agents Section Rep: Maureen Pfaff WTP, NTP (Olympic Peninsula Title Co.)
  • Agents Section Rep: Sylvia A. Smith-Turk (Western Title Co.)
  • Underwriters Section Chair: Daniel M. Wold (Old Republic National Title Insurance Co.)
  • Underwriters Section Rep: David Townsend MTP, NTP (Agents National Title Insurance Co.)
  • Underwriters Section Rep: Robert J. Wineman (Fidelity National Title Group)
  • Immediate Past President: Cynthia Durham Blair NTP (Blair Cato Pickren Casterline LLC)

Contact ALTA at 202-296-3671 or

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