“I’m not coming to you as a vice president of Quicken Loans, but I’m coming to you as a husband to my wife, Theresa, and a father of my two boys,” Quicken Loans Vice President Austin Niemiec began in a video he posted Tuesday to LinkedIn. “What I’m going to talk about has nothing to do with business, it has to do with me defending my family and frankly, common decency.”
Niemiec was responding to a video message sent by Anthony Casa, chairman of the Association of Independent Mortgage Experts, over the July 4 holiday. In the video, Casa made comments of a sexual nature about Niemiec’s wife. These videos were then circulated by Casa to prominent mortgage industry executives, including Paramount Residential Mortgage Group Chief Lending Officer Kevin Peranio and Mount Diablo Lending Broker/Owner Ramon Walker.
After HousingWire published an article on the lawsuit filed against Casa, he responded with a new video on LinkedIn issuing a full apology. In his apology, he said he had been going back and forth with Niemiec in a heated discussion.
“They were making some comments that were trying to egg me on,” Casa said. “Unfortunately, I let the emotions of the situation get the better of me and I responded with a video message and I said some really inappropriate and lewd comments about that person’s wife.”
Now, however, Niemiec released his own video, saying there was no heated discussion before Casa sent his video.
“In the video, Anthony tries to suggest that this exchange that we had was heated and he was somehow egged on,” Niemiec said in the video. Niemiec claims that before this incident he had not spoken to Casa since 2019, and that he has never proactively reached out.
Niemiec claims that Casa started the exchange, calling him a “prick” and using other expletives. At that point, Niemiec said he sent Casa a video response where he tells Casa that he is with his wife, celebrating a big month and to relax. Niemiec’s wife then asks Casa, “Why are you so mad, honey?”
Niemiec claims this was the entirety of the exchange before Casa sent a lewd video with sexist remarks toward Theresa Niemiec.
Austin Niemiec also referenced Casa forwarding the video to various mortgage industry experts, who are called out in his wife’s lawsuit for laughing at Casa’s video, and said Casa then sent these responses back to Niemiec and his wife.
“I can handle competition, I love competition, but this definitely oversteps the line and I will continue to stand up for what’s right for my family and for the broker community,” Niemiec concluded.
Click here to watch his full video.
The National Association of Mortgage Brokers also came out with a statement against Casa’s remarks, using the hashtag #brokersarebetterthanthis in their communications.
“The misogynist and derogatory behavior from a supposed ‘leader’ of a broker association towards Austin Niemiec’s wife is never to be tolerated,” NAMB President-elect Kimber White said in a statement when sharing Niemiec’s video. “This is not about broker against big lender that it is being portrayed to be. This is about right and wrong. I cannot think of any organization, corporation or association in 2020 that would not demand the removal of any member who participated in this type behavior.”
“Brokers are better than this,” White continued. “We may have our disagreements, but our family are never fair game. They are off limits. As a mortgage professional, I find it so disappointing that anyone would condone this, and would simply shrug this off and say, ‘Oh well people make mistakes.’ Yes we all make mistakes, and I and all responsible adults are held accountable for our actions.
“I hope that every broker and lender will hold Mr. Casa and all those who participated in the juvenile antics accountable for their actions,” he said. “This is not how we as mortgage professionals act. We as brokers and industry professionals have worked too hard to build and (rebuild) our reputations as mortgage professionals to accept or excuse this.”