Investment Team

Thomas Sponholtz
Chairman, CEO and Founder of Unison
Thomas works closely with all stakeholders to ensure the success of Unison and the wide-spread acceptance of home equity for investors and homebuyers. Prior to Unison, Thomas held various positions with Barclay’s Global Investors (BGI), most recently as Head of Fixed income Strategy and Co-Head of Active Fixed Income. At BGI, Thomas was instrumental in launching the first Fixed Income iShares (ETF). Thomas has also worked as a Senior Investment officer at Susquehanna Investment Group as well as Alex Brown and Sons where he led the development and securitization of several large consumer finance products in partnership with European Banks. This included the issuance of Europe’s first collateralized mortgage obligation. Thomas holds an Academy Economist degree from Niels Brock’s Academy of International Business.
Rayan Rafay
COO and Head of Portfolio Management
Rayan oversees the investment management business. Rayan formerly ran Teck Resources’ (Canada’s largest mining company) pension funds and financial risk group overseeing a multi-asset portfolio and a large commodity, interest rate, and currency portfolio. Prior to this role, Rayan worked for the Government of Canada in Economic Development in the Northwest Territories. Rayan also has experience as an Equity Sales Trader with HSBC in Hong Kong. Rayan is the founder of Investment Frontier; an information hub for Frontier Markets and Shalifay, which invests in US Real Estate and seed-level startups. Rayan is a CFA Charterholder and a graduate in international business and Mandarin from the Schulich School of Business, York University. Rayan is the Chair of the Frontier College Foundation Board as well as an advisor to several startups.
Brad Lookabaugh
Quantitative Portfolio Manager
Brad is responsible for working with research and operations to synthesize Unison’s investment strategy. This involves implementing Unison’s investment guidelines and overseeing Odin, Unison’s investment platform. Brad previously worked for Accenture where he managed M&A integration as well as acting as a product test lead. Brad also has experience in complex securities’ analysis with Stout Risius Ross and in biomedical research with the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Brad has a Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering from Northwestern University and a Master of Financial Engineering from the Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley.
Andrew Toby
Director, Investment Operations
Andrew manages the structure and implementation of investment management strategies, performance analysis, and investor reporting. Prior to joining Unison in 2016, Andrew served as a Vice President, Portfolio Management for U.S. real estate at BlackRock, where he managed the day to day portfolio operations including development strategies and budgets, financial and performance analysis, and partner/manager relationships. Prior to BlackRock, he served as an acquisitions analyst with Bentall Kennedy and as a senior auditor at Deloitte. Andrew earned an MBA in real estate and urban land economics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and a BA in economics with an emphasis in accounting from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Andrew is a CFA Charterholder and has a CPA license (inactive).
Brodie Gay
Quantitative Strategist
Brodie applies machine learning, statistics and quantitative methods in financial derivatives pricing to forecast and price residential real estate derivatives. In addition, he manages the quantitative research and portfolio optimization strategy, leveraging mass property level transaction databases and large scale parallel processing clusters. Prior to Unison, Brodie worked as a Quantitative Strategist for the Financial Institutions Group at Goldman Sachs in New York City. Brodie received his Master of Financial Engineering (MFE) and Bachelor of Science in Engineering Physics from UC Berkeley. He lectures a summer course on Quantitative Methods in Derivatives Pricing and a Machine Learning workshop at UC Berkeley for students in the MFE program.
Brandan Carlson
Asset Management Associate
Brandan manages the execution of investment management strategies and portfolio administration to maximize investor return and ensure that each customer has an excellent experience working with Unison Investment Management. Brandan also assists with fund accounting and investment operations across the company. Prior to joining the Investment Management team, Brandan worked closely with Unison’s partner lenders and end consumers. This puts him in a unique position to manage assets with a human element and a deep understanding of the Unison brand. Brandan began his career in FinTech at SoFi, the student loan refi disruptor, where he served as a Loan Analyst and Underwriter for both student loans and personal loans. He is a graduate of Santa Clara University with a Bachelor of Science in Finance.
Robert Price
Managing Director, Acquisitions
Robert oversees the acquisitions group at Unison Investment Management. The Acquisitions group performs end to end processing, closing and due diligence/analysis for each property that UIM invests in. Robert focuses on driving innovation in workflow and process improvements and developing synergies in the acquisition process. Robert has over 25 years of experience in financial services. Robert studied Economics and Business Finance at the University of Texas at Austin.
Emmanuel Mendoza
Corporate Underwriter & Analysis
Emmanuel (Manny) facilitates credit and property underwriting and analysis to determine investment suitability within the Acquistion group. He is focused on developing innovative, high-quality service standards for UIM as a long-term investor in residential real estate. Manny has over 20 years of experience in the residential real estate industry and possesses extesnive knowledge of agency and non-agency mortgage products. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Finance from Notre Dame de Namur University and a Master's degree in Capital Markets from Saint Mary's College of California.
Avita Unadkat
Senior Closing Specialist
Avita oversees the company's closing and escrow activities within the Acquisition Group. Avita is keenly focused on improving the customer experience as well as ensuring that investments are originated efficiently. Avita has 10 years' industry experience and holds a degree in Finance with a minor in Economics from Cal State East Bay, and an MBA from Webster University, Orlando.
Matthew Johnson
Senior Processing Specialist
Matthew serves as a Senior Processing Specialist within the Acquisitions group. Matthew manages and streamlines processing methods for origination. He works tirelessly to implement an efficient progression pipeline to provide an excellent service experience to Unison partners and to originate quality assets for our investors. Before joining the Unison team, Matthew served as a Loan Processor for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage division and a Mortgage Loan Coordinator for Bank of America. He is a graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma holding a degree in Business Administration.
Ismael Cassas
Senior Processing Specialist
Amy Marsili
Senior Closing Specialist

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