Our Beloved Founder
We are very sad to share the news that Ben Lambert, our founder, beloved Chairman and the spirit of Eastdil Secured, passed away at the end of January. Ben was a legend in real estate and the founder of the real estate investment banking industry. He established the unique culture of the firm that is the hallmark of our company today.
Ben founded the firm in 1967 with the vision to bring an investment banking approach to real estate. Over the course of his 54-year career, he was involved in some of the world's most iconic real estate transactions, such as: the financing of the Embarcadero Center in the early 70's; facilitating the purchase of the Irvine Ranch in 1977; the sale of the MacArthur Foundation apartment portfolio in the mid-80's; and the sale of the Helmsley Portfolio in the 90's.
Over time, the firm grew, expanding across the world and becoming an integral partner on every type of property and transaction type. In the 1980's, the firm entered into a venture with Nomura Securities and from 1999 to 2019 operated as a subsidiary of Wells Fargo Bank. In 2019, Ben and the firm's management team led Eastdil Secured's recapitalization, in partnership with Guggenheim, Temasek and Wells Fargo. This management-led recapitalization took the firm private and solidified the firm's position as the premier independent real estate investment bank.
A living icon, Ben's countless contributions laid the foundation for today's commercial real estate industry. Beyond the firm, he served as a highly sought after advisor to a number of corporate boards of directors and important organizations. Among those influential roles, he has served as a member of the boards of directors of the Irvine Company and Hilton Hotels Corporation. He is a founding trustee of the Wells Fargo Mortgage & Equity REIT, former Chairman of the Board of the National Realty Committee, and Member of the Urban Land Institute, the International Council of Shopping Centers and the Real Estate Board of New York. Ben is also a former trustee of his alma mater, Brown University and was the Founder and Chairman of the Harlem Day Charter School and a former member of the Board of the Waterford Institute and the Waterford School.
This is an unfathomable loss to all of us at the firm. Ben was a true father-like figure to many of us, and we will miss his wisdom, warmth, leadership and love. In a tough, high stakes environment, Ben never had a bad word to say about anyone. His commitment to putting the needs of our clients above all is what defined Eastdil Secured, and that commitment lives on in every single one of us. We will not forget Ben, and it is our honor and privilege to carry on his legacy with the same integrity and passion for excellence that he established.
To create value for our clients through creative, actionable ideas and flawless execution, and to be the most relevant and trusted advisor in the commercial real estate capital markets.We are - or aspire to be:
- A discreet and trusted advisor that prioritizes long-term relationships over single transactions – it’s decades, not deals.
- An organization that invests in our people and fosters their growth & empowerment at all levels.
- A collaborative and intelligence-driven team that operates with a high degree of internal connectivity and trust.
- A firm that uniquely combines capital markets and real estate expertise – providing clients with outstanding advice and execution in all the major markets, property types, and transaction forms.
- A company that encourages its people to develop deep personal, lasting relationships with the individuals at all levels at our client organizations.