Learn about the 2018 Laureates: Mark Ein

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We had a chance to ask Mark a few questions so you could get to know him better. Here's what he had to say.

 Mark D. Ein | Founder & CEO, Venturehouse Group, LLC

Mark D. Ein | Founder & CEO, Venturehouse Group, LLC

Washington Business Hall of Fame (WBHOF): What was the hardest job you have ever done?

Mark: "My first job out of college in investment banking at Goldman Sachs during one of the most active periods on Wall Street was like business boot camp, but it was also an invaluable experience. It was 100 hours a week of relentless work around the clock for three years, but that experience changed the trajectory of my career as it taught me how to do every single thing at the highest levels of professionalism, from the menial to the most meaningful. It gave me important insight into what it takes to do world class work and also gave me a set of mentors that taught me a lot."

 

WBHOF: Did you have a mentor or a role model over the course of your career?

Mark: "I have been blessed to have many mentors over my career and I am deeply grateful for the many people, including several people who are icons in the Washington business community, that took an interest in me over the years and that have taught me so much. Some of the most influential people in my career have been Ken Brody from my time at Goldman Sachs, David Rubenstein who recruited me back to Washington to work at Carlyle when the firm was five years old, Jeong Kim who was my lead investor when I started my own firm and stayed committed to me through bad and good times, and Ted Leonsis who has been my role model for how to build a sports organization as a community asset and think about businesses with a 'double bottom line.' But above all, my life role models have been my family who came to this country after WWII with nothing after losing everything during the war and rebuilt their lives with resilience, optimism, no bitterness, and daily gratitude for the boundless opportunities that America gave them. I never go a day without thinking about the power of their example."

 

WBHOF: If you were to create a slogan or a theme song for your life, what would it be?

Mark: "I have three!

'It’s a long life and a small world' so always take the long view, protect your reputation and treat people well.

My family’s history surviving WWII, after having a prosperous life prior, has taught me that 'life is precarious' so enjoy the journey and never take for granted your good fortune. 

And finally my wife’s and my life slogan is 'EAWO: Everything Always Works Out' which is a great reminder that, while not every single thing actually does go your way, most things do work out, keep things in perspective, and, in the end, don’t forget how fortunate we are."

 

WBHOF: What do you think is the single greatest challenge facing the next generation?

Mark: "I love the ideals and values of the next generation that are grounded in the belief that making the world a better place and a more fair and equal world for all people should be the guiding principal and the top priority. That generation is a real source of hope, but their single greatest challenge will be to find common ground to pull together and solve the very significant long-term issues that confront our nation and our world. The incredible polarization created by social media echo chambers, left and right leaning media and a badly dysfunctional political system has made it impossible for the generations currently in charge to tackle the hard issues and, while I am an eternal optimist, it concerns me greatly if you logically extrapolate forward without any course correction that we must hope that the next generation will be able to do."


Join us November 28th as we honor Mark and five other outstanding Washingtonian business leaders at our 31st annual Washington Business Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Gala!

CLICK HERE TO RESERVE YOUR TABLE TODAY.

Learn about the 2018 Laureates: The JBG Companies Founding Partners

We had a chance to ask Donald, Joseph, and Benjamin a few questions so you could get to know them better. Here's what they had to say. 

 Donald A. Brown |  Founding Partner, JBG Companies

Donald A. Brown |  Founding Partner, JBG Companies

Donald A. Brown

Washington Business Hall of Fame (WBHOF): What was the hardest job you have ever done?

Donald: "I started high school and dating at the same time in 1942. Being short of spending money, I accepted a part-time job at Sears Roebuck, then located on Wisconsin and Albemarle Street. I was assigned to the Garden Department and I specialized in selling sheep manure. I sold so much manure that my pay was soon raised from 50 cents per hour to 60 cents per hour. During my life as a founder of JBG, some associates have suggested that I am still known for a similar product."

WBHOF: Did you have a mentor or a role model over the course of your career? 

Donald: "Yes, I did have a mentor from a very early age that taught me all the important things I needed to know about people. He taught me to love and respect everybody regardless of race, color, or education and his greatest joy was helping friends and family in trouble. He was the greatest role model and also my father."

WBHOF: What’s the one thing you want the Greater Washington business community to know about your company this year?

Donald: "A big year for JBG going public and partnering with the Smith Company. Both companies had been unusually successful primarily because they built their success on two words: competence and integrity."

WBHOF: If you were to create a slogan or a theme song for your life, what would it be?

Donald: "From the play My Fair Lady, 'With a little bit of luck!'"

WBHOF: If you could choose one person, living or dead, to have dinner with, who would it be?  

Donald: "I would choose Warren Buffett. We were classmates and friends at Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, DC (Class of ’47). It would be fun to discuss the times we spent together 70 years ago."

 Joseph B. Gildenhorn | Founding Partner, JBG Companies

Joseph B. Gildenhorn | Founding Partner, JBG Companies

Joseph B. Gildenhorn

WBHOF: Did you have a mentor or a role model over the course of your career?

Joseph: "My name is Joseph B. Gildenhorn. My initials are JBG. However, in my professional life, I am the “G” in JBG; part of a trio of my partners, Donald Brown and Benjamin Jacobs for nearly six decades. What a journey it has been! We originally built a law practice, and in the 60s it evolved into a real estate development firm. Over the years, we mentored one another by collaborating on every decision that was made. Loyalty, trust and expertise guided us, and we made purposeful decisions for each project that was put forward. Our warm bond has endured to this day."

WBHOF: What was the hardest job you have ever done?

Joseph: "My greatest challenge was taking a leave of absence from JBG, the private sector, and entering public service as U.S. Ambassador to Switzerland from 1989-93. My experience in the private sector served me well as I assumed my new position. To have the honor and opportunity to represent our great country was the proudest and most cherished time of my life."

WBHOF: What’s the one thing you want the Greater Washington business community to know about your company this year?

Joseph: "Another great satisfaction has been the growth and expansion of JBG in each succeeding year with its new vibrant leadership and expanded development mission. Last year was a milestone year as JBG joined the Vornado Company to create JBG Smith that became listed on the New York Stock Exchange."

WBHOF: What do you think is the single greatest challenge facing the next generation?

Joseph: "Every generation has its challenges. Observing the unproductive divisiveness and the lack of civility taking its toll on our country, I am distressed. I look forward to the next generation of leaders -- men and women who are intelligent, motivated, diverse and patriotic to chart a new course for a positive future for America."

WBHOF: If you were to create a slogan or a theme song for your life, what would it be?

Joseph: "Whenever I’m with my favorite dinner partner, Alma, my wife of 65 years, we often talk about gratitude and our many blessings. We believe that it is a privilege to be able to give back in some measure the goodness that we have received. Our slogan would surely be 'Give ‘til it helps.'”

 Benjamin R. Jacobs | Founding Partner, JBG Companies

Benjamin R. Jacobs | Founding Partner, JBG Companies

Benjamin R. Jacobs

WBHOF: What was the hardest task you have ever done?

Benjamin: "Graduate college."

WBHOF: Did you have a mentor or a role model over the course of your career? 

Benjamin: "The role models of my career have been my wife, Gail, Donald, Joe and my many partners.

My mentors, in the sense of from whom I learned, all my many colleagues at The JBG Companies and JBG SMITH that I’ve had the good fortune of working with these past 55 years."

WBHOF: What’s the one thing you want the Greater Washington business community to know about your company this year?

Benjamin: "That we continue to embrace the core values of ethical and fair dealing which have underpinned our success over the past 55 years."

WBHOF: If you were to create a slogan or a theme song for your life, what would it be?

Benjamin: "Dum virimus viramus. 'While we live, let us live.'"

WBHOF: What do you think is the single greatest challenge facing the next generation?

Benjamin: "Creating and sustaining opportunity for all."


Join us November 28th as we honor Donald, Joseph, Benjamin, and three other outstanding Washingtonian business leaders at our 31st Annual Washington Business Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Gala!

CLICK HERE TO RESERVE YOUR TABLE TODAY.

SURVEY: 4 out of 5 millennials can't answer basic financial questions

SURVEY: 4 out of 5 millennials can't answer basic financial questions

Do you think you know the basics when it comes to finances? According to a new nationwide survey released today by MassMutual, millennials still have a lot to learn about fundamental personal finance topics such as credit scores, compound interest and investing.