Boom Bust and Blame

Crisis A-Z


Dallas, William (Bill):
William Dallas is the Former Chairman/CEO, OwnIt Mortgage, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January 2007. The Agoura Hills, California-based home lender part-owned by Merrill Lynch employed more than 800 workers.

Ownit was a subprime lender making loans to borrowers with poor credit and limited income. Filing in response to lawsuits by two creditors, Dallas listed Ownit's debts as more than $100 million with assets between $1 million and $100 million.

Ownit says that it owes its largest unsecured creditor, Merrill Lynch, approximately $93 million. Since 2005, Merrill Lynch was also an owner of a 20% stake in Ownit Mortgage. Credit Suisse First Boston, owed $12.7 million, and Terwin Advisors LLC, owed $19 million, were also unsecured creditors of Ownit Mortgage.

Dallas is described in his own biography as a dedicated and accomplished entrepreneur, who in 2003, along with CIVC partners and a group of private investors, acquired the stock of Oakmont Mortgage, and changed the name to Ownit Mortgage Solutions.

In 1981, Dallas co-founded First Franklin Financial Corporation and served as its Chairman, CEO & Chairman Emeritus. In 1995, Mr. Dallas co-founded Heritage Bank of Commerce, a community business bank serving the Silicon Valley.

In 2001, Dallas and Bill Freeman co-founded B&B Restaurant Ventures with Fox Sports. The New York-based television network launched FOX SPORTS GRILL in 2002 and followed up with eight additional locations. A nationwide roll-out was planned but B&B Restaurant Ventures filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in July 2008.

Outside financial services, Dallas is trustee for Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen and is on the board of managers of Dualstar Entertainment Group LLC the holding company for the Olsen twins. Dualstar is home to the Mary-Kate and Ashley brand fashion, lifestyle, entertainment and home décor line featured at nearly 3,000 WalMart stores in the United States.

Dallas earned a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree, Magna cum Laude, from Bowling Green State University in 1977. While operating First Franklin day-to-day, he earned his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Santa Clara School of Law in 1987. He holds the CMB (Certified Mortgage Banker) designation.

Dallas is married and has five children.

Debt-to-Income Ratio:
Key factor a lender takes into consideration before granting approval for a mortgage. This is the ratio between how much a consumer owes each month on personal debt and how much he or she earns. This ratio calculates the percentage of debt in relation to how much money earned, and gives lenders a good indication of how much additional debt a consumer can handle.

Debt-to-income ratio can be calculated by adding fixed monthly expenses such as car payments, minimum credit card payments and any other regular debt obligations such as monthly child support or student loans, adding them to expected housing payments (including private mortgage insurance, homeowner's insurance and property taxes) and dividing the total by gross monthly income.The debt-to-income ratio should be no higher than 36 percent. Anything above this could result in a denial of credit or a higher interest rate on the loan. Lenders prefer the total housing expenses to not exceed 28 percent of monthly gross income. Subprime lenders accepted loans even if the debt-to-income ratio was above 40 percent, taking risks on consumers who were more likely to default. Federal Housing Authority mortgages and Veterans Administration mortgages allow a debt-to-income ratio of up to 41 percent.

Dimon, James (Jamie):
James Dimon is the Chief Executive Officer of JPMorgan Chase and Co. and has been in that position since December 31, 2005. He is also Chairman of the Board since December 2006 and a member of the Board of Directors of the New York Federal Reserve since January 2007.

Dimon was born in New York City on March 13, 1956 to a family already involved in the brokerage business. Dimon greworking summers in a brokerage firm owned by his father and grandfather. He attended Tuffs University, where he majored in psychology and economics and then earned an MBA from Harvard University in 1982. He went on to work together with Sandy Weill at American Express and then followed him to Commercial Credit. Together, they managed to build an immense company through mergers and acquisitions until they formed Citigroup on October 8, 1998; which is the result of the biggest merger in history between Citicorp and Travelers Group.

Dimon stayed with Citigroup only until November 1998, and left the firm following a disagreement with Weill. He was hired as Chief Executive Officer of Bank One and subsequently COO of JPMorgan Chase after Bank One was acquired in July 2004. He remained the President and COO until his appointment as CEO in 2005.

Dimon is married to Judith Kent and they have three daughters.

Dodd, Christopher:
Christopher Dodd is the senior United States Senator from Connecticut and Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee. Dodd ran for the Democratic nomination for President of the United States in 2007 but dropped out on January 3, 2008 after disappointing results in the Iowa caucuses. He went on to endorse President Barack Obama. Dodd was first elected to the U.S. Senate on November 4, 1980.

Senator Dodd was born on May 27, 1944 in Willimantic, Connecticut to Grace Mary Dodd and former U.S. Senator Thomas Joseph Dodd and is the fifth of six children. He attended Georgetown Preparatory School in Maryland, and in 1966 earned a degree in English Literature from Providence University. He joined the Peace Corps and spent two years in the Dominican Republic. When he returned to the United States, Dodd served in the Army Reserves and became a member of the Army National Guard.

In 1972, he obtained a Juris Doctor degree from the University Of Louisville School Of Law. He went on to practice law in New London until his election to Congress in 1974. Dodd served three terms in the House of Representatives representing Connecticut's Second District.

Dodd announced in February 2009 plans to refinance two mortgages for his homes in Washington and East Haddam, Connecticut, that he received through a VIP program from Countrywide Financial Corp.

Dodd has acknowledged receiving mortgages in 2003 through the VIP program at Countrywide, which was sold to Bank of America. Dodd says he was wrongfully labeled a friend of Countrywide's former CEO, Angelo Mozilo. Dodd says he never sought special treatment.

Senator Dodd is married to Jackie Clegg Dodd, and lives with his two daughters Grace and Christina in East Haddam, Connecticut.

Donovan, Shaun:
Shaun Donovan is the 15th United States Secretary for Housing and Urban Development, sworn-in January 26, 2009. He was nominated by President Barack Obama on December 13, 2008 and confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 22, 2009. Before becoming the HUD Secretary, Donovan served as Commissioner of the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development since 2004.

Donovan was born on January 24, 1966 in New York and attended Harvard University, where he earned Masters Degrees in Architecture and in Public Administration.