Trammell Crow

Honoring a real estate visionary:
F. Trammell Crow

Trammell Crow

Courtesy of Crow Holdings

Trammell Crow (1914–2009) was a great leader of and visionary for the real estate industry. He was a significant participant in real estate at a critical point in a high-growth period in the U.S. economy. He believed that real estate should enhance communities and make them a better place to live, work and play. While it was important to Crow to be successful financially so that his company could endure, he also wanted all parties to succeed.

To honor Crow’s legacy, UNC Kenan-Flagler alumni Leonard W. Wood (MBA ’72), and James R. Simpson (MBA ’70) were lead donors in establishing The F. Trammell Crow MBA Fellowship for Leadership in Real Estate. The fund will provide annual support of a fellowship for a deserving UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA student planning to concentrate in real estate development and/or real estate finance.

Crow was an early proponent of a win/win philosophy. He understood and promoted the concept of partnership, which created great results on many levels because the individuals were owners in the business. By sharing his financial and business connections with ambitious local partners spread across the globe, he became one of the most successful developers in the world. His organizations spawned many other companies, and the concept of sharing great ideas and best practices in widespread partnerships became commonplace in real estate development.

Crow recognized that risk is inherent in almost every endeavor and understood that “there’s as much risk in doing nothing as in doing something.” He believed that each person is responsible for his or her own success. Trammell worked tirelessly, and he was fond of saying that “work is more fun than fun.” He also enjoyed many outside pursuits, but he always had time for his family since a balance between work and life was important to him.

“By creating this fellowship, we hope that recipients will embrace Trammell Crow’s personal and business philosophies and implement them in their daily lives, embodying his enduring characteristics to become better leaders of both the real estate community and the world at large,” says Wood, founder of Wood Partners, LLC. Wood also serves on the advisory board of the Leonard W. Wood Center for Real Estate Studies, which is named in his honor.

“Trammell’s vision and leadership provided us with business and personal opportunities that we would not have otherwise had,” says Simpson, co-founder of Wood Partners, LLC. “We are grateful for his support and hope that, through this fellowship, other great leaders can be developed to enhance real estate and business opportunities for future generations.”

A group of real estate professionals, whose lives have been touched in a significant way by their association with Trammell Crow Residential Company or by Crow himself, joined Wood and Simpson in funding the fellowship.

“We are excited that this fellowship brings together UNC alumni along with individuals who attended other schools to support a fellowship to honor a great individual and great ideas,” says Wood.

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