The 107th ALTA Annual Convention is under way at the beautiful Breakers Hotel in West Palm Beach. Attendees began arriving early Monday for committee meetings; many arrived Tuesday to prepare for sessions and the opening on Wednesday. About 25 wonderful Stewart associates are on hand, building relationships with independent agencies; learning from breakout sessions; contributing to the ALTA mission as officers, committee members and other leadership; and meeting with federal regulators to better understand the impact of evolving regs on our company.
Of note, Stewart underwriting counsel Jim Gosdin is the chair of the ALTA Forms Committee, which continues to innovate with refined and new title insurance coverage to serve our customers. I am also pleased to be nominated again to serve on the ALTA Board of Directors and on several committees.
ALTA membership has grown this year to a record 4700 companies, with 1000 new members this year. Conference attendance is over 850 members, the most since the 1980s.
The central theme of the conference is the understanding/deployment of the newly released ALTA Best Practices, intended to ensure “a positive and compliant real estate settlement experience” and give lenders greater confidence in the title industry. It is impressive to see the manner and power with which the ALTA is leading the industry on multiple fronts, such as their response to regulatory change as the mortgage market is being reengineered, standards for operational policies and best practices for title company operations, new title insurance policy forms, evolving accounting practices and more.