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A History of Synergy:

Meet Our Leadership Team

Founder & Principal
David Dill

David C. Dill was born and raised in Michigan where he played baseball for Michigan State University before transferring to Oakland University to complete his studies in Marketing and Finance. David loves his home state and still spends much of his time there, although he relocated to Denver, Colorado, over a decade ago.Read More

Following his ambition in finance and dedication to the customer, he worked as a Private Wealth Manager for Huntington National Bank before founding and incorporating Synergy Appraisal Services in 1996 with one simple premise: To provide exceptional Customer Service that is uniquely designed to meet the specific business needs of each Client.

The customer has always been David's focus. Understanding that service is only part of the winning formula for his customers, David also became an early advocate of implementing a quality control function to mitigate risk and strengthen credit quality. As part of Synergy's commitment to quality, it performs QC Completeness Checks on every report before delivery. David's passion for excellent service, consistent quality and regular client interaction has endeared him to Customers.

Chief Executive Officer
Terry A. Aikin

Terry A. Aikin, CMB, AMP, joined the organization in November 2015. Born in Michigan, Terry moved to Lakeland, Florida to attend Warner University where he graduated with degrees in Organizational Behavior and Finance. Following graduation and a successful career in commercial insurance, he relocated back to Michigan in 1997 where he began his mortgage finance career leveraging his management experience in commercial insurance. Terry found success in retail mortgage lending, private mortgage insurance, loan origination software, and residential valuation services.Read More

Most recently, Terry led Accenture Mortgage Cadence's Lending Solutions software sales division generating over $20mm in sales in two years. Prior to Accenture, he played keys roles in sales and account management with Solidifi's launch into the US from 2008-2013.

Terry earned his Accredited Mortgage Professional designation (AMP) in 2006 and his Certified Mortgage Banker (CMB) designation in 2008. The CMB designation is the highest achievement of the Mortgage Bankers Association, which has less than 1200 CMB's across the country earning such designation among the more than 400,000 in the mortgage lending industry. Terry serves as the 2016 Vice Chairman of the CMB Society and is a former board member of the Michigan Mortgage Lenders Association. His motto is "Engage with passion and purpose."

President & Chief Operating Officer
James Baumberger

James A. Baumberger joined Synergy Appraisal Services on March 24, 2011. Born in Ohio, Jim is a second-generation appraiser with decades of successful management experience. His 25 years of professional experience includes valuation services for asset management, eminent domain, lending, litigation, marketing, and relocation purposes. He regularly consults with both staff and fee appraisers regarding complex property valuations.Read More

Jim has an outstanding record of providing senior leadership for appraisal organizations. Some of his past positions include Collateral Services Manager for Washington Mutual, Regional Chief Appraiser for Bank of America, Division Appraisal Manager for World Savings, and Mortgage Group Leader for Wachovia.

In addition, Jim has taught appraisal licensing and continuing education courses for many years. He also develops and presents training seminars on subject matter including appraisal, compliance, real estate markets, review practice, and secondary market guidelines. Jim particularly enjoys talking with other professionals about changes affecting appraisal standards, mortgage lending, real estate markets, and regulatory compliance.

Current regulatory changes have made compliance the focus of Jim's recent presentations. The landmark Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 4173) included regulations implemented by many federal agencies – such as the FRB, FDIC, OCC, NCUA, and the BCFP. With significant amendments to TILA, FIRREA, RESPA and ECOA, Jim knows it is vitally important that appraisers and Clients understand the best ways to ensure compliance with these far-reaching regulatory changes.

No matter the regulatory changes to come, or the compliance efforts required, Jim is well prepared to help Clients understand how to effectively mitigate financial and reputational risks with compliant appraisal processes. One of the best ways Clients can achieve full compliance, control costs, improve operational efficiency, and strengthen risk management is to have Synergy Appraisal's expert team design a compliant managed appraisal solution customized for their unique business needs.

Director of Operations
Dianne Forbush

Dianne Forbush was born and raised in Wisconsin. After attending the University of Wisconsin, and completing a degree in zoology, she later moved to Colorado. Dianne joined Synergy Appraisal Services as Director of Operations in May 2006, after working previously in the mortgage services industry. As the Director of Operations, Dianne is responsible for ensuring that all of Synergy's departments, processes and technical systems work harmoniously with each other, to maintain compliance, maximize efficiency, and to provide excellent customer service.Read More

Dianne also manages Synergy's human resource department and focuses much of her time on Benefits Administration and Compensation. She provides leadership for Synergy's financial functions, too, such as Accounts Payable & Accounts Receivables. Her organizational skills, love of spreadsheets, and keen attention to detail empower her to manage operations effectively. Dianne likes to solve problems and help people be successful. She enjoys the pleasure of working closely with customers, employees, and vendors alike!

Chief Appraiser
Giles Hofacer III

Giles Hofacer III has effectively managed Synergy's appraisal Quality Control Reviewers for over seven years. Giles also manages staff appraisers and independent fee appraisers to ensure high standards for appraisal quality, compliance, communication, and service are fulfilled for Clients.Read More

Giles grew up in Michigan and went into Sales Management in Philadelphia after college. He built, and later sold, his first company after establishing sales offices in three cities. Giles particularly enjoyed motivating his sales team and facilitating their professional development. He began his appraisal career in Miami. Giles specialized in high-end and complex properties, quickly becoming the top producer in the firm. He started his own appraisal firm thereafter and soon expanded to a staff of 15 appraisers. Borrowers and Realtors loved working with Giles, who used his technical skills to produce credible appraisals and reviews while providing great customer service, too.

Giles recently moved back to his home state. It is important to Giles to live close to friends and family in Michigan. He spends many of his weekends visiting and helping his grandparents.

Giles works closely as Synergy Appraisal's liaison between appraisers, real estate agents, and lenders. He believes that cordial, respectful communications and consistent customer service are of utmost importance in building lasting relationships with professionals throughout the industry. His appraisal expertise, extensive review experience, and problem-solving skills empower Giles to add value for Synergy's clients.

For him, there's no better feeling than helping out another person, whether it's a customer, friend, or stranger. This sense of community and connection guides all his efforts to do a great job for clients. Giles appreciates how Synergy teammates all work together to help clients succeed. He believes in building quality relationships with clients, being thoughtful of their business needs, and collaborating to achieve excellent results. Giles loves to feel the satisfaction of a job well done.

National Account Manager
James Morris

James Morris joined Synergy Appraisal Services as National Account Manager in July 2011. He was born in Florida and grew up in West Virginia. James completed a double-major in neuroscience and philosophy at Oberlin College in Ohio.Read More

James took an unlikely path into the mortgage lending industry in 2005 after locating to Ann Arbor, Michigan to manage appraisers for TSI Appraisal, the appraisal management company of Quicken Loans. He believes that mortgage lending is an important economic sector that directly impacts the lives of everyone in America.

James approaches work with passion for applied ethics, respect for other professionals, and pride in exceeding customer expectations. He specializes in creating managed appraisal solutions that benefit customers and appraisers alike. James believes that working as a team – with appraisers, clients, and coworkers – outstanding results can be achieved.

He has served in several different capacities as a managed appraisal solutions provider, especially in recruiting and qualifying appraisers for some of the most challenging complex properties in the nation. James is one of the most successful, and most admired, appraiser recruiters in America. He is a powerful resource for Synergy's clients with the ability to place even the most challenging appraisal assignments with a qualified, competent local appraiser.

James is an extraordinarily intelligent professional with many years' experience working to ensure a positive customer experience for agents, borrowers, and lenders. He leverages his broad base of experience to lead Synergy's team of Account Managers. James is a highly motivated manager, who is determined to be the best in the business at delivering positive results for his Clients.

Additional Team Members

Erika Parker Account Manager

Read More about Erika

Erika grew up in Michigan, and now lives in Troy. She recently completed a masters degree in Strategic Management.

Erika loves the close communication Synergy encourages between team members—whether in person or virtual. For her, customer service is providing a tangible way of connecting with clients and vendors. One of her highest compliments comes from clients who are overwhelmingly confident in their working relationship after years of service.

Erika has volunteered her time teaching Sunday school classes since she was a teenager and loves the rewarding experience of watching children grow and develop. She is a movie buff who frequently adds to her extensive collection.


Jennifer Cole Account Manager

Read More about Jennifer

Jennifer is a lifelong Michigan resident who appreciates the resiliency her fellow Michiganites have shown through this economic turmoil. She loves working with her Synergy teammates, who are also committed to excellence.

Jennifer and her husband just brought their first home in Warren. They love their quiet neighborhood and welcoming neighbors. In her spare time Jennifer is an avid knitter and a diehard sci-fi fan who enjoys reading good books and singing at church. She is active in her community and appreciates how often they are able to overcome limitations and make a positive difference.


Chris Castro Certified Residential Appraiser

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Chris has been appraising for 21 years and has worked with the Synergy Family since 2000. Although appraisal can be quite challenging, Chris finds it can also be quite rewarding. She is a lifelong Michigan resident. Chris and her husband, Andres, have been married for almost 44 years and have two grown married sons, two grandsons and two granddaughters.

Though she's not fond of the Michigan winters, Chris still enjoys MIchigan's outdoor beauty and many lakes and parks. Chris also enjoys reading, walking, playing the card game Euchre and most of all, spending time with family and friends.