Roundtable Weekly
Former Roundtable Chairman Nelson Rising, Industry Leader and Political Activist
February 11, 2023
Nelson Rising

Nelson C. Rising, a trailblazing real estate industry leader who served as chairman of The Real Estate Roundtable (2000 to 2003), and cofounder and chairman of Rising Realty Partners, passed away yesterday. (Los Angeles Times and BusinessWire, Feb. 10)

Private and Public Sector Leader

  • “Always a gentleman, Nelson Rising chaired The Real Estate Roundtable for three years,” said Jeffrey DeBoer, Roundtable President and CEO. “Nelson emphasized an issue advocacy system built around solid research, positive approaches to issues and an overall focus on the substantial economic and social benefits that strong real estate markets provide to job creation, healthy communities, and a growing national economy.”

  • DeBoer added, “His strategic policy acumen was especially valuable following 9-11 when Nelson was a key leader in the establishment of a national terrorism insurance program. This hugely important work allowed a stalled real estate capital market to reopen. The Roundtable was honored to have his compassionate friendship and his inspirational leadership. We already miss him deeply and will remember him always.“

  • Mr. Rising was an accomplished developer who built iconic projects in Los Angeles, Chicago, and Mission Bay, the largest mixed-used development in San Francisco history. (CREConnect, Feb. 10)

  • “Some of the biggest buildings in America are standing today because Nelson had a hand in it,” said John Cushman, Chairman, Global Transactions at Cushman & Wakefield, Inc., and a friend of Mr. Rising for over 40 years. “We worked together to bring Downtown LA the Library Tower, Gas Company Tower, Wells Fargo Center, and numerous other projects in California and across the country. He could take confusion and chaos and translate it into common sense and bring people back to the table who were yelling. He was a genius in terms of dealing with people,” added Cushman, who is also a member of The Real Estate Roundtable. (Los Angeles Times and BusinessWire, Feb. 10)

  • Mr. Rising served as Chairman Emeritus of Rising Realty Partners, an environmentally conscious real estate investment and operating company headquartered in Los Angeles. The company owns or manages more than 5 million square feet in buildings in California, Colorado, Nevada, Missouri, and Texas.

  • Previously, he served as President & CEO of MPG Office Trust, Inc., the owner of over half of the institution-quality office space in downtown Los Angeles. From 1994-2005, Mr. Rising served as Chief Executive Officer of Catellus Development Corporation. During his tenure, he oversaw the company’s successful evolution from a railroad land company to a diversified development company and a real estate investment trust. (Rising Realty Partners)

  • Mr. Rising was also widely known for his influential role in advising elected officials at all levels of government. He is credited with managing the successful mayoral campaigns of the late Tom Bradley, who served for twenty years as Mayor of Los Angeles. Mr. Rising also chaired campaigns for California Governor and U.S. Senate. He also served as a former chair of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.

Mr. Rising received a B.A. with honors in Economics from UCLA on a football scholarship and earned a Juris Doctor from UCLA School of Law, where he served as Managing Editor of the UCLA Law Review. He practiced law at O’Melveny & Myers prior to entering the real estate industry.

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