I am excited to share my conversation with Mr. Stephen Siegel who, at age 73, is now the Chairman of CB Richard Ellis, the world’s largest commercial real estate services company. The media has often described him as one of the most legendary real estate game changers and titans in NYC. Most importantly, the Wall Street Journal quoted him as the most generous man in the commercial real estate industry. Steve talks a lot about the importance of giving back and how he learned this way of life through his parents who didn’t have money to give back, but always gave back their time to help the less fortunate.
Steve came from a very humbling upbringing in the Bronx. He never graduated college, but his parents instilled values that inspired him to work tremendously hard. Steve landed in commercial real estate at the age of 17 and never stopped. Not only does he take us on a journey throughout his business career (and tells us fun stories about working with Donald Trump and other famous people along the way), but he was also kind enough to share honest stories such as: when his wife battled leukemia, when he decided to stop drinking, and how he got creative during some of the darkest economic downfalls.
Also, please note that I kept some unedited parts in the conversation – the very beginning when Steve tells the story of how he and Bill Clinton prepare for speeches was not supposed to be recorded! But it’s a cool story so I left it in!!