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A son of Russian-Jewish immigrants with sales know-how goes on to launch Gold Star Mortgage

Daniel Milstein was born in Kiev, Ukraine. Being a young Jewish boy in the USSR meant he was discriminated against on a daily basis.

“I had to work twice as hard to get the same grades in school as someone working half as much because I was Jewish,” he said.

His family immigrated to Ann Arbor in 1991 after Chernobyl. Milstein developed his work ethic during long hours at McDonald’s as he worked his way through college, eventually taking a job at TCF Bank where he honed his sales skills and became a top producer.

“I became overconfident,” he said. After 11 months, he left for a small mortgage firm and failed. Next came a position as manager of a Comerica Bank branch located in a supermarket.

“Forgetting the lessons learned at that last mortgage company, I left to become a loan officer at an even larger mortgage broker,” he said. “As if on cue, I failed again.”

Those failures helped shape Milstein into a successful business professional. He learned the banking business inside out and was promoted consistently because of his sales acumen.

“It was my dream to start my own company,” he said. Gold Star Mortgage was launched in 2000. He never looked back.

Gold Star Mortgage was ranked by Inc. magazine as one of the fastest-growing companies in America in 2009 and 2010. It’s the third-largest residential lender in Michigan, the 53rd largest in the United States and employs more than 400 people. The company closes more than a billion dollars in loans annually and Milstein has been recognized as the No. 1 mortgage originator in the country. In the past 10 years, he’s achieved more than $3 billion in personal career mortgage sales.

A motivated, successful and savvy businessman, the 35-year-old CEO of the Ann Arbor-based Gold Star Mortgage Financial Group decided to pass on the secrets of his success to others in the sales business with a new book, The ABC of Sales, Lessons From A Superstar (available at Amazon.com).
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Related Company

  • Gold Star Mortgage
    3879 Packard Rd.
    Ann Arbor, Michigan 48108 Website
    Gold Star Mortgage Financial Group is a full service mortgage business with its main headquarters located in Ann Arbor, MI.