Meet Peter Foo – The Ultimate Team Player

Truly working behind the scenes, San Francisco native Peter is a document specialist who reviews application packages to make sure that they are complete. Working out of our San Ramon office, Peter started his career in the mortgage industry after seven years in the Marines. We caught up with Peter between check lists and talked with him about what he does for fun and how being a Marine helps keep all of that paperwork straight.

CHM: What got you interested in the Home Mortgage business? I fell into it. I got my start working in operations at a bank. From there I moved into a funding assistant position. I liked the work and have stayed in the industry since then.

CHM: What do you do for fun? I have an eleven-year-old son who is really into airsoft sports. Most Friday nights we’ll go out to an indoor airsoft field nearby and play a couple of short-term skirmishes. It’s great exercise and fun for us both. I’m a very active person. I like to play baseball, basketball, and football. I was on a semi-pro football team, the East Bay Outlaws for a couple of seasons. It’s not that I don’t enjoy watching sports. I’m a big-time Golden State Warriors fan.

CHM: In what capacity did you serve in the military? I was in the Marines from 1992 through December 1999. I was a Sergeant (E3) when I got out. It was a lot of fun and still miss it sometimes. I’m not a big guy. I’m 5’10” and about 155 pounds. But I was accepted there because I pulled my weight. I got the job done, and that’s what counts. I don’t mean to say that being in the Marines was easy. I trained in some tough environments. We once trained near Death Valley where it was 120 degrees in the afternoon and near freezing at night. That wasn’t much fun.

CHM: How does working in the civilian world compare to the military? It’s just different. In the Marines, everything’s structured. In civilian life, you’re open to do whatever you want. You have to force yourself to do what needs to be done. If you want to do more, you can. If you work hard at a job, you get ahead.

CHM: What did you learn in the military that’s come in handy in the mortgage industry? Teamwork and leadership were instilled big time. I learned that working as a team will get you farther than working by yourself. That applies everywhere. Leadership is about structure. Once you know who is in the leadership role, you know not to go over their heads. Everything goes smoother that way. The Marines taught me the value of hard work and discipline. When I got into the mortgage business I worked hard at my job. I figured it out. Then I did that again at my next job. It takes discipline to keep track of all of the documents in a mortgage package. It helps me stay organized and make sure that everything is in place. Sports gave me the same thing.

CHM: In what way did sports help you? If you want to be better at something, you practice. Getting to be good at your job is better for the company and better for yourself. Teamwork takes you farther than working alone.

CHM: What’s the best part of working at Commerce Home Mortgage? Everyone knows each other. It’s like an extended family at the San Ramon office and even beyond. Whenever I talk to someone from another office, it’s like we’re in the same family. The higher up in the company you go, the more responsibility you have. Everyone in the office helps each other and I really like that environment.

CHM: We’re glad you’re part of the Commerce Home Mortgage family, Peter.