Helen Brooks. Photo by David Sherman
As one of the first female leaders in the Twin Cities real estate community, Helen Brooks paved the way for women in commercial real estate.
When she first embarked on a career in commercial real estate, finding a company that would take a chance on hiring a woman was a challenge. At that time, women simply were not in the industry. Brooks got her feet wet at Premiere Realty when they hired her in 1965. She spent four years at the company before venturing out on her own and founding Brokers’ Exchange in 1969. After working for nine years on many successful deals with clients such as Pizza Hut, White Castle and McDonald’s, Bill Reiling and Fred Lamb of Towle Real Estate offered her a position. Brooks quickly became known industry-wide as “that woman at Towle,” successfully working with many satisfied clients while representing the industry exceptionally well.
Brooks is one of five inductees in The Minnesota Real Estate Hall of Fame this year. Leonard Bisanz (1918 – 2002), Thomas Crowley, M.A. Mortenson, Sr. (1905 – 1986) and Kenneth Stensby (1940 – 2013) will also be inducted this year. They will be honored at an event October 24, presented by The Shenehon Center for Real Estate at the Opus College of Business.
“What is good for the community is good for business.” – Douglas Dayton
I’ve gotten to talk with some interesting people but Doug Dayton was one of my favorites. In part because he built two of my retail favorites; Target and Southdale. He was also good to work with while putting together information used to make this video for the MN Real Estate Hall of Fame. Sad to hear this news of his passing this weekend.
Via Bring Me The News: The Strib’s Neal St. Anthony notes that Douglas Dayton was the youngest of five Dayton brothers who took over their father’s department store in the 1940s and built it into publicly held Dayton Hudson Corp, one of the nation’s largest regional department store chains.
This video, made for UST’s Shenehon Center Real Estate Hall of Fame, has a nice history of the Dayton brothers, as told by Douglas Dayton:
From the Dayton Brother’s Hall of Fame induction:
This week, staff from the Opus College of Business and more than 100 other business schools from around the world gathered at the GMAC Annual Conference in Vancouver, BC, Canada to discuss graduate management education’s rapidly changing landscape.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the continent, in Washington, D.C., lawmakers turned a spotlight on re-focusing the country on maintaining national excellence in the humanities and social sciences—and how failure to do so will have consequences at home and abroad for the future of American education, security, and competitiveness—by releasing a report from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences titled, The Heart of the Matter.
How do these two events come together? At the GMAC conference closing keynote, David Bach, the Senior Associate Dean for Executive MBA and Global Programs at Yale School of Business put it this way: we need a change in “T-shaped leadership.”
As a school, we have long distinguished ourselves as a leader in business education, and we are in the process of distinguishing ourselves as a leader in our engagement and support of an increasingly diverse professional community, here in the Twin Cities metropolitan area and throughout the Midwest. Therefore it is very timely that we’d see student organizations springing up on our campus in response to the intersection of these two forces. Our student news site, Tommie Media, recently reported that a group of St. Thomas students are planning a business club for minorities and expect to officially launch it this fall:
Sophomore Sarah Ubani came up with the idea of establishing the business club, which specifically caters to minority students.
Summer is here at last, it seems, and for many Minnesotans that means it is festival season. Lately I’ve heard Minnesota called the Land of 10,000 festivals, and it appears there’s something for everyone: art, beer, running, renaissance, Grand Old Day, the Aquatennial, the Irish Fair and, of course, the State Fair. Up north, Duluth has more than two dozen festivals. UST alumni have contributed a few to the mega mix of Minnesota festivals, like the Midwest Tomato Fest, now set for its third year on July 13.
How many festivals are there, actually, and what impact do all these events have on our state economy? MinnPost and Twin Cities Business recently sought to answer these questions and their article is worth a read. Here are a few snippets:
Do you take time to keep yourself sharp? I often hear about strategies to “improve your business, improve your process, improve this, and improve that.” Enough about the process…what about you? What can you do to improve you? Think about how much the business world has changed over the last few years. When I started in business, computers were just emerging, there were no laptops, and cell phones were bigger than your head. Yes, it’s ridiculous to think about, I know. And even if you’re just recently entering the business world, technology marches on. As everything changes around us, if we don’t grown and also change, we’ll be left behind. So, what can you do to keep yourself continually educating? Here are just a few things that I’ve run across throughout my career, and found to be incredibly helpful.
Go back to school. If you can make the time commitment, consider going back to school. I had the benefit of completing my MBA right after my undergrad. While I was excited about this accomplishment, the down side was that I had no real world experience to apply my learning toward. I learned many things, but not to the extent I would have, had I pursued a similar path now. If you are interested in learning more about a particular topic or industry, and you have the time and financial ability, nothing says “continuous education” like going back to school.
More than 250 students were hooded in the Graduate Business Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 25. Randall J. Hogan, chairman and CEO of Pentair, delivered the commencement address and told the graduates “You’re starting the next phase of your lives” and the two things you need to be successful are to “create your own future, and control your own destiny. Make sure you have a goal in mind, when opportunities present themselves, you will be bold enough to take them.”
Fatima Vite learns about UST and the St. Paul campus with tour guide, Beth Cummins. Next fall, Fatima will be a junior and will continue touring campuses and preparing to apply for admission to colleges or universities.
Cristo Rey Jesuit High School’s Hire4Ed, Work-Study Program, calls itself “A School that Works.” The Hire4Ed work-study program underwrites almost half the cost of education and exposes the student to a corporate work environment and the positive influences of the supervising professionals. In exchange, employers that participate in the Hire4Ed Work-Study program receive high quality, cost-effective workers and get to play an active role in students’ future success.
CRJHS is a private, Catholic, college-preparatory high school exclusively for under-resourced students. For Allie Bell and Fatima Vite, Cristo Rey and employers like the UST Opus College of Business (OCB) are why getting a college degree is a dream that will come true. The University of St. Thomas is one of more than 90 leading companies and organizations in the Twin Cities that provide high school tuition dollars for these young employees, in exchange for 5 days of work from each of them each month. The tuition OCB pays allows the students to support over 50% of their tuition at Cristo Rey (CR) and receive a college preparatory high school experience that would not be an option otherwise. At the same time, the jobs CR students do provide valuable work experience each year while in high school, which empowers them to take an active part in financing a major portion of their education.
How does one successfully navigate the process of moving from an individual contributor or team member to a first-time manager and leader? Which leadership characteristics and competencies promote positive and authentic leadership and which practices or attitudes can detract from an individual’s leadership potential? Moreover, how does one learn or develop leadership capabilities?
Last month, I had the pleasure of attending the first National Association of Asian MBAs (NAAMBA) event hosted on the University of St. Thomas Minneapolis campus in the Opus College of Business Schulze Auditorium. The event focused on topic that resonated with all attendees, is consistently on the minds of business professionals, and is interwoven throughout the UST MBA program (and many other MBA programs’) curriculum: leadership.
To spark the discussion, NAAMBA-Twin Cities invited Robert C. Barnett, adjunct faculty member in UST’s Organizational Learning and Development department and principal and senior fellow in management consulting at Robert Barnett Consulting, LLC and MDA Leadership Consulting, to share his extensive research and findings about leadership.
The Multicultural Forum was held April 10-11, at the Minneapolis Convention Center with a spring snowstorm adding another dimension to the conference, especially for out-of-state visitors from warmer climes.
The Forum celebrated its 25th anniversary, culminating with a name change to The Forum on Workplace Inclusion. This new moniker reflects societal changes and a refocusing of the Forum’s agenda. Inclusion leads to engagement, innovation, productivity, and employee retention. Does your workplace value these variables? If not, what is the cost of not including, valuing, and listening to “others”? Considering business’ focus on financial outcomes—follow the money. Organizations and businesses are recognizing the economic benefit to the bottom line when they value and practice inclusion.
I was able to attend a variety of sessions. Highlights: