Mortgage Daily

Published On: October 18, 2004
Allied Originator Mixes Music and Mortgages

Brian O’Donnell publicity stunt goes awry

October 18, 2004


Former rock jock Brian O’Donnell, 25, admitted that a publicity stunt gone awry was halted at the “cease and desist” order filed by an attorney representing Brian Bonsall, 22, the actor who played the youngest sibling Andrew on “Family Ties.”

O’Donnell explained that it was said over the airwaves that he was, in fact, the youngster who played on “Family Ties” and no one at the station ever denied it. “I laughed about it,” he said. “And I never thought that much more about it.”

That’s not to say O’Donnell didn’t benefit from the infamy that was attached to the identity of a child actor all grown up. In fact, O’Donnell said when he decided to begin his career in the mortgage business he had accumulated over 8,000 email addresses that helped him initiate his client referral process. “I sent out about 10 emails in mass mailings,” he explained.

“I started about seven months ago,” O’Donnell said of his position with the Livonia, Mich, branch of Allied Home Mortgage. “I’m closing between 1 and 1.4 million a month, around 7 or 8 loans.”

photo of Brian O'Donnell and Kid Rock
Brian with Kid Rock
photo of Brian O'Donnell and Steven Tyler
Brian with Steven Tyler
O’Donnell began a career in broadcasting after graduating from Specs Howard School of Broadcasting. He said that at the age of 17 his voice was already hitting the airwaves for The Edge 105.1, an alternative rock station.After gaining experience as a DJ, O’Donnell then moved on to producing and interviewing bands on a late night talk show with 101.1 FM (WRIF), Detroit’s heritage mainstream rock and roll station. “Eminem was an interesting interview I got to see just how childish he was. I can’t believe how famous he became,” O’Donnell said of one of the many interviews that included Kid Rock and Steven Tyler. He even met Ringo Starr.

O’Donnell’s position at WRIF was that of Assistant Music Director when he decided to exit the rock and roll scene and concentrate on a more stable future which includes marriage to his longtime girlfriend.

He clarified that his decision to make the career jump was based on money. “I’ve always been self-motivated and I don’t like punching a time clock,” he stated. “I like that I now control my destiny, time, and finances. The harder I work the more I can make, not like other jobs where you work your ass off for the same pay.”He said he enjoys his position with Allied and isn’t ready to make any moves yet despite calls from recruiters trying to lure him away. “We have 800 offices nationwide,” he said. “And the lending capability to handle a multitude of construction loans. I’ve built up a nice trusting with the builders and Realtors — I’m not going anywhere.”
photo of Brian O'Donnell and Kid Rock
Tommy Lee with Brian

Paula Parisot is a freelance writer for In addition to 4 years’ journalism experience at other news publications, Paula has worked in the mortgage industry. Email Paula at: [email protected]

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