Prominent real estate financier to give UHV fall commencement speech

Steven Kaufman

A leading expert on mortgages and real estate financing will address University of Houston-Victoria graduates during the university's fall commencement ceremony.

Steven Kaufman, president and CEO of Zeus Mortgage Ltd. and a UHV alumnus, will be the ceremony's keynote speaker.

The graduation begins at 11 a.m. Dec. 14 at the Leonard E. Merrell Center, 6301 S. Stadium Lane in Katy.

Zeus Mortgage is a Houston-based mortgage provider of home-equity loans and mortgages. Kaufman has coordinated more than $1 billion in real estate financing for companies including American Express, Hewlett Packard and Exxon Mobil. His company is the 37th fastest growing private financial service firms in the U.S., according to Inc. Magazine.

Kaufman earned a Master of Science in Economic Development and Entrepreneurship in 2011 from UHV.

Kaufman said he plans to talk with the fall 2013 class about what success looks like after graduation. He also will discuss why the "tassel is worth the hassle" and what happens if people don't reach their own ambitions.

"People set out to achieve lofty goals, but often they fall short and hit a plateau," Kaufman said. "I will talk about why that occurs psychologically and how to address it."

Kaufman said his UHV degree helped him understand the distinction between entrepreneurship and economic development, and how real wealth comes from job creation.

"On the practical side, my degree taught me presentation skills from an economic development standpoint. It also alerted me to financials that I had never been exposed to before even as a CPA."

Kaufman said he gives back to UHV because he wants everyone to realize how great the school is.

He and his wife, Monique, have two daughters, Laurel and Vivian.

UHV holds graduation ceremonies in two different locations each year. Spring commencement is in Victoria, while the fall ceremony is held in Katy to better accommodate UHV students who take classes in Greater Houston.

For more information about commencement, contact special events coordinator Nancy Gresham at 361-570-4351 or greshamn@uhv.edu.