BEACHWOOD, Ohio, Feb. 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Developers Diversified Realty Corporation (NYSE: DDR) Board of Directors today announced the company and Scott A. Wolstein have agreed he will step down from the role of Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors.
Mr. Wolstein co-founded Developers Diversified Realty with his father in 1992 and led the company's successful IPO in February of the following year. At the time the company was a relatively small enterprise with approximately $400 million in assets with a portfolio comprised predominantly of Kmart-anchored shopping centers in the eastern United States. Under Mr. Wolstein's guidance and leadership, Developers Diversified has grown to become one of the world's leading retail real estate companies with nearly $18 billion in assets under management and operations throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Brazil.
Daniel B. Hurwitz, President and Chief Executive Officer of Developers Diversified, said, "Scott and I have worked together for many years and I am extremely grateful for his leadership, wisdom and mentorship. I wish him continued success in all his future endeavors."
Commenting on this transition, Mr. Wolstein said, "I enter this new chapter of my professional life with complete confidence that Developers Diversified is in good hands. I am certain that the company's management team, led by Dan Hurwitz – one of the industry's most highly capable and most highly respected CEO's – will continue to thrive as an international market leader in the world of retail real estate."
Terrance R. Ahern, Lead Director of the Developers Diversified board said, "Scott has served in a leadership role at Developers Diversified nearly his entire professional career and he has made countless contributions to the company. We are grateful for his many years of service."
In addition, Mr. Ahern, a non-executive and independent Director, will serve as Chairman of the Board following Mr. Wolstein's departure. Mr. Ahern is the Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Townsend Group, an institutional real asset advisory firm formed in 1986, which advises and invests on behalf of domestic and offshore public and private pension plans, endowments and foundations, sovereign wealth funds and multi-manager funds. Prior to founding The Townsend Group, Mr. Ahern was engaged in the private practice of law.
Mr. Wolstein will be entitled to certain benefits as outlined in his Amended and Restated Employment Agreement with Developers Diversified which will result in a charge that the company expects to take in the first quarter of 2011.
Mr. Wolstein served as Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors of Developers Diversified since January 1, 2010. In addition, Mr. Wolstein served as the Chief Executive Officer and a Director of Developers Diversified since its organization in 1992. Mr. Wolstein was Chairman of the Board of Directors of the company from May 1997 through December 2009. Prior to the organization of the company, Mr. Wolstein was a principal and executive officer of Developers Diversified Group, the company's predecessor.
He graduated cum laude from both the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan Law School. Following law school, Mr. Wolstein was associated with the law firm of Thompson Hine.
Mr. Wolstein is currently a member of the Board of Governors and Executive Committee of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT); Board of Directors of the Real Estate Roundtable; Board of Trustees for Case Western Reserve University; Board of Directors for United Way of Greater Cleveland; Board Member of the Greater Cleveland Partnership; Board Member of the Cleveland Development Advisors; and member of the Executive Committee and Board of Trustees of the Zell-Lurie Wharton Real Estate Center. He is also a current member of the Urban Land Institute, PREA, and the World Presidents' Organization.
He has also served as Chairman of the State of Israel Bonds - Ohio Chapter; a Trustee of the International Council of Shopping Centers; Board of Directors of University Hospitals Health Systems; President of the Board of Trustees of the United Cerebral Palsy Association of Greater Cleveland; Board of Directors and Executive Committee Member of the Cleveland Chapter of the Red Cross; Board Member of the Cleveland Chapter of the Anti Defamation League; and a member of the Board of the Great Lakes Theater Festival; The Park Synagogue; and the Convention & Visitors Bureau of Greater Cleveland. Mr. Wolstein is a four-time recipient of the Realty Stock Review's Outstanding CEO Award.
In 2007, he received the Malden Mills Corporate Kindness Award from Project Love, a Cleveland-based organization whose mission is to promote kindness, caring and mutual respect among, for and through our children.
About Developers Diversified Realty
Developers Diversified owns and manages approximately 570 retail operating and development properties in 41 states, Brazil, Canada and Puerto Rico. Totaling approximately 132 million square feet, the company's shopping center portfolio features open-air, value-oriented neighborhood and community centers, mixed-use centers and lifestyle centers located in prime markets with stable populations and high-growth potential. Developers Diversified is the largest landlord in Puerto Rico and owns a premier portfolio of regional malls primarily clustered around Sao Paulo, Brazil. Developers Diversified is a self-administered and self-managed REIT operating as a fully integrated real estate company. Additional information about the company is available on the company's website at www.ddr.com.
SOURCE Developers Diversified Realty Corporation