CCIM Spotlight: Change to Spare
CCIM's new president reflects on the career that shapes his leadership approach.
CCIM changed my life is a common sentiment among commercial real estate professionals who have earned the designation. But when 2009 CCIM Institute President Charles A. Mac McClure III, CCIM, CRE, GRI, says these words and he often does he’s not just referring to the designation’s positive impact on his career. His immediate family and many of his closest friends are CCIMs. These personal ties lend a uniquely centered approach to his work.
In 1975, McClure joined his family’s residential real estate company in Abilene, Texas, where he began his CCIM coursework. With that first course, CCIM changed the entire direction of my real estate career, he says. Thus, he laid the groundwork for his own commercial real estate and development company, The McClure Group, which he founded in 1978.
While working toward the CCIM designation, McClure became a prominent leader in the local real estate community. In 1981, he was elected president of the Abilene Board of Realtors and became a trustee for the Texas Association of Realtors Political Action Committee. During this time, McClure’s CCIM instructors recognized his ambition and urged him to complete his designation requirements. Before I took my last course, [CCIM instructor and friend] Chase Magnuson told me, ‘If you want to be a professional in this business, you’ve got to finish the CCIM designation program,’ he says.
McClure finished the CCIM designation program in 1983 but the CCIM designation program wasn’t finished with him. The institute invited McClure to the CCIM instructor training session the following year. Despite his increasingly busy career, he also donated his time to the North Texas CCIM Chapter’s education program. Then, as the savings and loan crisis erupted, he developed a real-estate-owned-asset course for savings and loan professionals. At a 1987 REO-asset course meeting, CCIM provided McClure with another life-changing moment: He met his future wife, Susan. Two years later they were married.
After moving to Dallas in 1989, McClure’s work involved lots of brokerage activity, particularly for S&Ls disposing of assets. In 1992, The McClure Group signed consulting contracts with Fidelity National Title and Benton Resources, the latter generating 850 Resolution Trust Corp. assets totaling $426 million. McClure also partnered with outside stockholders to found The Industrial Group, which managed and leased properties for pension funds and institutional investors. He helped build the company’s 20 million-square-foot portfolio before selling his share to prepare for the CCIM presidency.
Over the course of his career, McClure has closed more than $1 billion in real estate transactions and $500 million in lease transactions. To help maintain his business ventures, he enlisted some familiar help. His wife, Susan B. McClure, CCIM, and son, John William McClure, CCIM, are partners in The McClure Group. John also is in charge of development for Bonnaroo Restaurant Group, a McClure Group partnership that owns 24 Chili’s Grill & Bar restaurants in South Carolina and Georgia.
As he assumes the presidency, the commercial real estate market remains uncertain. But McClure is unfazed. As an industry leader, this will be my third major economic downturn, McClure says. CCIMs have the education and resources to prosper in all market conditions, he adds. With the support of his friends and family, he is ready to lead the institute through this difficult time and perhaps change more than a few lives in the process.