Executive Team

Executive Leadership Team

The Executive Leadership Team manages the day-to-day activities with the association. This team includes the President, Vice-President, Secretary/Treasurer, Marketing/Sponsorships, and Executive Director.


Matthew J. Atkinson

Matt Atkinson started his career in real estate 14 years ago and has been investing for the last 12 years. He purchased his first investment property in 2004, a single-family home through a short sale, which is a rental unit he still owns today. However, he over-improved the property, spent too much money on the renovation, and mismanaged his tenants. Throughout this process he learned the struggle of having a full-time job and being a landlord, and how to effectively utilize other industry professionals to improve his investing. Matt credits this experience with getting him addicted to local real estate investing and now owns dozens of rental properties personally and with partners. He has accumulated 25,500 hours experience – nearly 7 years round the clock – and has personally invested over $1.87 million dollars in rehabbing rental properties since 2004, and an additional $2.25 million on flip properties since 2008. After making only $500 on his first flip project, he reevaluated the strategies others were using and learned how to effectively buy the property, get the most bang for his buck during the remodel, and how to price the home for the quickest and most profitable return. In 2015, Matt and his team added wholesaling to their repertoire and sold 32 homes to other investors. He has been the President of UVREIA for 4 years, a board member of SLREIA since 2010, a member of NAHREP for 2 years, and is member of UAMP.

Contact Matt at email matkinson@intercaplending.com Phone 801-671-9367


Leslie Peterson

Leslie Peterson
Vice President

Leslie Peterson has cultivated a deep knowledge of the title and escrow industry through 15 years of hands-on experience. After 8 years of working at various title companies, she opened Charger Title Insurance Agency, Inc. While Charger Title is located in Utah County, she closes files not just in Utah but across most of the 50 states.  She works with a wide variety of clients, from hard money lenders, to investors, to first time home buyers and basic refinances. Leslie is known for her attention to detail and willingness to go the extra mile for the client.

When not hard at work on her client’s files she’s busy investing in her own rental properties. She started investing in real estate in 2001 and has done seller carry transactions, hard money loans, and traditional lending. Her personal investing experience just adds to her vast knowledge in the title industry.

Contact Leslie at email leslie@chargertitle.com Phone 801-830-7529


Derek Smart

Derek Smart

I am very fortunate to have been involved with real estate since I was born. My family owns a lot of land throughout the valley that we farm, hold and develop. Currently we are working on 3 projects to develop about 50 acres of land in both residential and commercial real estate. I read Rich Dad Poor Dad while finishing my business degrees at Utah State University. It helped me realize the importance of cash flow, and tax planning. After reading it I purchased an owner occupied 4 plex. We recently had our 2nd little baby girl, and as things return to normal we will purchase a single family home, and another income property using a rate and term refi strategy early 2017.


Eliot Ward

Eliot Ward

Eliot has had his real estate license for 10 years. Prior to being an active real estate agent in Utah, he was a broker in California and was the Broker of Record for Property Management company with close to 2,000 leases. Eliot loves to help people with their real estate needs.

In addition to residential agency, he also done multifamily development with the United States Navy as part of Clark Realty Capital helping to develop housing for military housing. He has also bought apartment buildings to implement value-add strategies around the country for investment groups. As an agent, acquiring, and developing, he has collectively worked on several hundred million of closed transactions.

He has also had operational roles and done M&A. He received an undergrad from BYU studying finance and then received an MBA from UVA studying real estate and finance. He has 4 children and lives in Draper, UT.


Elizabeth Cardero

Elizabeth Cordero
Membership Chair

Elizabeth Cordero has not traveled an easy road to success and financial security. Elizabeth grew up in Mexico as the youngest born to a single mother. At the young age of 14, Elizabeth and her older sister successfully completed a dangerous border crossing into the United States.

Though she started her life in the U.S. with no worldly possessions other than a few dollars of money for food and no ability to speak the language, Elizabeth has overcome obstacles that would have caused many to give up — she has achieved financial security and established a multi-faceted set of business profit centers in the state of Utah, which range from a cleaning business to real estate sales, flipping homes, property management and investment activities. **** (Elizabeth was able to buy her first home while she was undocumented which later become one of her most lucrative investments) ****

Elizabeth’s first job in the U.S. was as a bagger at a grocery store. After a number of these rapid-fire work experience, Elizabeth began a new approach–as an entrepreneur. She launched a Elizabeth Cleaning Services, a residential cleaning company that at first employed herself, her mom and sister, but quickly grew into a leading provider of residential cleaning for the Salt Lake metro area. As this company grew, she launched another thriving cleaning service, Elizabeth Business Cleaning, to tap into the lucrative commercial business cleaning market.

As these businesses skyrocketed, Elizabeth expanded her reach and influence progressively–from real estate residential sales to property management, buying and selling homes, and investments in real estate and other projects. Through her business success Elizabeth, who became a legal U.S. working resident shortly after the 2012 enactment of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, no longer needs to work to support herself. Instead she works because she chooses to pursue her profound passion for leadership, real estate and charitable service.

She has an abiding commitment to learning, and has maintained a 3.9 grade point average in her college studies, running a business full-time as she studied. She is an active member of the Salt Lake Real Estate Investors Association, National Association of Hispanic Realtor, National Association of Realtors, Utah Valley Real Estate Investors Association and has held a real estate license for over 2 years.

When she is able to go to Mexico Elizabeth will embarked on her dream of building a first-of-its-kind orphanage in Mexico that will not only provide the necessities of life for the children it serves; it will also empower them with practical education and training in professional skills, entrepreneurship and other crucial life skills.


Erik Hammond

Erik Hammond
Social Media

Erik Hammond is a multi-faceted Real Estate Agent and Investor with real life experiences. This is something that he takes pride in, being able to help people achieve their goals.

With a background in construction management and an ability to manage large teams, he also has a great understanding of the different aspects of the Real Estate market. Erik has been managing a rehabbing company for several years, Revive Homes LLC, that is actively managing and flipping homes in Utah and California.

Currently Erik is working out of San Diego, California as a REALTOR and is now an expert on all things Real Estate: managing, financing, procuring, selling, rehabbing and flipping homes for profit. Erik has a long standing relationship with Keller Williams, a nationally top rated Real Estate brokerage.

Because of this experience and education Erik has developed the uncanny ability to look at the Real Estate market, understand where it is going and how to capitalize on it – and he wants to help you better understand the various Real Estate options that are available.

Erik is actively educating those around him with several weekly online training seminars and informative videos that are to help educate and inspire others to accomplish their own personal goals – just like he did. Erik wants to help others around him through is education and experience. Visit Erik and stay updated with the latest information, market reports and tips about the ins-and-outs of Real Estate. Go with The Pro with the Bow today!

Contact Erik at email Erik@TheOrangeStack.com or join him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheOrangeStack #TheProWithTheBow.


Teresa Ray

Teresa Ray
Executive Director

Teresa Ray lived in Denver Colorado as she studied Nursing and Science at Denver Metro. In 2011 she moved to Pleasant Grove where she proceeded to work as a Nurse (LPN) at a local Gynecologist Office.

She is passionate about learning the ins and outs of Real Estate Investing and Property Management and currently works with a Real Estate Guru Matthew Atkinson as the Assistant Property Manager/ Administrative Office Assistant. In her free time, Teresa loves to spend time with her growing boys and husband outdoors and traveling around as much as possible. Teresa also is big into the community and is always finding ways to give back and volunteer as well. Grateful for the amazing opportunity to grow with MJA Real Estate.

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