Who was Publius (in the context of US history)?
Get to know me! Disclaimer: That is not me in the background image on this page.
You are about to meet a different kind of thinker whose mind has been shaped by fruitful experiences, agile socializing and reading. Wit & humor are not in short supply.
While some of my life has been “normal,” much has been different than many of my peers. Let’s start with some perspective: I learned to drive on a forklift and not a car! Now people wonder why I explore many angles in an attempt to accomplish something.
My childhood & young adulthood was one shaped by sports, scouting, martial arts, disciplined parenting, paper routes, selling boosters, being an altar boy (FYI-no issues with priests), working on trucks, working in warehouses, installing material handling equipment (lockers, shelving, industrial storage racking, etc), Bergen Catholic High School, Syracuse University, building loft beds, selling t-shirts & other college “needs,” founding & running a student summer storage company. In my 20's and beyond, I was running Hamptons share houses, working in a family moving business, starting a global office-moving company network, buying and selling several NYC apartments, founding a large annual golf outing that caused the merger of competing trade organizations, moving to Harlem before it was completely chic to do so, leaving NYC as the vampire that killed me slowly & moving to Durham.
The family business was a life shaping and changing experience for close to 30 years. The lessons learned are almost immeasurable, but I lost a good many opportunities to gain more valuable experience at other companies, in other industries, etc. Above all else, I should have listened to my father’s usual response to my ideas “not in this business.” Problem was, he had no way to explain the reasoning behind this as he lacked education, perspective and emotional intelligence. Therefore, I was never clear that it was a warning or an encouragement to leave without regret.
Regrets are where my journey begins.
Canvassing: Cold calling mixed with research & documentation. Needs to happen so that you are on point with your questions and statements to potential clients & vendors. This is a multi-step process and is sometimes purely research oriented.
Networking with people. Much of my network is comprised of professionals within commercial real estate at all levels, but more connected with those in technology, capital markets or asset management functions. Additionally, I try to stay in tune with the start-up community and networking regularly with other entrepreneurs.
Connecting people, ideas & capital. I make quality introductions.
Understanding the relationships between systems.
Seeing possible outcomes.
Asking better questions than providing answers.
Humorous conversation and intrigue via lively questions & debate.
The ability to get along with a large diversity of people & social circles. Can bridge divides and connect unlikely partners for a common cause.
Aikido: Have studied this art for over 10 years now and cannot live without it. Working on my 2nd Kyu.
Systema: A new art for me. This training regimen is very different and quite challenging.
Men’s Bible study: Wed 7-8am at Immaculate Conception. A great way to read about and debate life’s issues. Keeps me thinking.
College basketball: Go Orange! However, I will cheer in conference (ACC) when SU is not playing.
Baseball: (NY Mets & whoever the Yankees are playing)
Grilling: Ever had coffee and black pepper on your steak?
Golf: Even a 30 handicap can enjoy playing sometimes.
Backgammon: Yes, I can play marathons and get upset when I lose by poor rolling of the dice.
Poker: I enjoy playing Omaha (split pots) with structured betting.
Traveling unlike a usual tourist: Yes, I prefer getting native.
Politics: I am a right of center thinker on most issues, save for some social ones. More in the Libertarian wing of the GOP, but believe in a strong foreign policy. Regardless, I always want something to be debated and examined before judgement.
Music: I am a classic rock junkie, but very much love jam or blues/boogie rock. Other styles include punk, heavy metal, new wave, funk, opera & tango. Just got back from JamCruise 18, which is something for everyone's bucket list.
Past Reads: Ayn Rand (all), Moneyball, The Firm, biographies of Keith Richards, Hamilton, Marquis de Lafayette, Washington, Adams, Ben Franklin, Teddy Roosevelt, Lincoln and George Patton, Many Lives-Many Masters, Good to Great, The Last Word on Power, Built to Last, The Ethical Slut, Confessions of 400 Men & Major Dudes (an interesting collection of interviews & album reviews of Donald Fagen & Walter Becker). Just started The Adams-Jefferson letters by Lester Cappon, as well as Thomas Paine and the Clarion Call for American Independence by Harlow G. Unger. Just finished The Lamb's Supper by Scott Hahn and "Love your Enemies" by Arthur Brooks.
It will be right more than 80% of the time. Know yourself, believe it and trust it. You may need to leave your extremely comfortable place if your self-awareness points to another direction. Just do it sooner so you can take the utmost advantage of the situation or give yourself more recovery time should the venture fail. You will only need one or two significant events to provide you with financial & personal freedom.
...and put in writing. Document all of your expenditures on behalf of a company and insist on written acknowledgement of the $. If someone does not sign, they are not legit.
If someone sends you BS documents for you to sign and is not willing to make requested changes, they are not legit.
If someone is reluctant to have you speak with supposed business partners, they are not legit.
If you need to rely on people you don't trust, it is time for one of you to leave. Note there are many types of trust, but in this instance I am not sure it matters. Life is too hard already to only be constantly looking over one's shoulder or doing double work.
You may be able to do something useful with this information. My mother, on so many occasions when we worked together, would say “when are you going to take your mother to lunch?” I never really did and missed a rich opportunity to learn her thinking beyond the normal “mom” stuff. Later in life, before she passed in 2017, she would constantly say “you have no idea what I live with.” Not asking her to explain what she meant will always haunt me, as I only learned of her independent thinking via her tap dance friends and me seeing the difficulties of dealing with my father, both only after her passing.
Changing a location does not change relationship fundamentals (or lack thereof).
You can learn a lot from a bad incident. For example, I learned more about business by closing one than running it. NEVER LOSE THE LESSON!
You cannot be responsible for someone else’s happiness; only your own. This is actually your job within any relationship to keep yourself happy so others can accept & utilize your power/energy.
Focus on building wealth and not making a living. The latter is not sustainable in the world of the “new normal.”
Things are not always as they seem. Do not jump to conclusions!
Do not stop reading and every 3 months try reading about subjects and/or from sources that are different than usual.
Putting the essential pieces & players together here. A whole new look at the supply chain, as well as credit/debt markets. Working with the founders to help determine the best course of a business model via BD efforts.
Co-Founded by an old moving client of mine, this firm is poised to develop B-Class housing in the southeastern US via a modular construction methodology. We are raising entity-level, equity capital right now.
Padi is a software that is one I should have discovered years ago. Getting close the holy grail by way of allowing for many unrelated systems (usually legacy) to share data within a dashboard, that is curated and designed by its user. This concept makes the sales of many new technology products much easier! I am working with the founder of this company in a strategic BD and fundraising capacity, with the goal of securing an equity stake.
An on-going, southeastern-USA focused buyer of B-class, multi-family housing. There have been 5 deals to date of which I have invested in 4. One of these has just sold out and another being refinanced.
This platform is built to manage all the activities and constituencies related to youth basketball, from the first dribble to college recruiting. I am a BD advisor with a goal of an equity position.
This marketplace is built to manage the careers of blue (or grey if you prefer) collar workers. They can be rock stars and earn significantly more than they do under current circumstances. I am a BD & fundraising advisor with a goal of an equity position.
I participate regularly in this group each Wednesday whereas I show up and listen to a pitch (or pitches) from an entrepreneur who needs something from the audience. This activity keeps me sharp and is part of my own continuing education about what is happening in the world of business, science, etc. I pride myself on asking good questions.
The most diverse group of people in one organization I have ever experienced. They need to grow and educate more people about the debates that should be happening vs. what our sensationalist-driven media portrays each day in the form of identity politics. There is a major shift in belief systems that our media outright ignores.
My role here is a special projects Member-at-Large, where I am focused on creating a piece of urban art in the middle of Durham.
This project morphed quickly! DriveSpotter started as a dashboard camera company designed to provide safety, location & training support for trucking companies. Secondly, it moved to a truckload marketplace for shippers and drivers with the goal to make logistics more efficient by bringing everything into the spot market and lessen the reliance on contracts. Thirdly, it was a platform to manage employee incentives (non-sales). Fourthly, this was a text as-a- common-medium platform for customer and employee engagement. The current version of this business is an information indexing platform based on someone's point of view and/or location.
I was assisting with some investment and strategic business development, however my tenure with this company has ended (Jan 2020) as I await the payback of my note.
Founded and run by 2, NYC-based, Greek fellows who left their respective, family diner businesses (this alone spoke volumes to me). This marketplace platform was designed to make the food/supply ordering process much more effective for the independent restaurant owner. Trading Table is currently at a tipping point with a new channel partner, so stay tuned.
A newer division of Institutional Real Estate, Inc. (www.ireoc.com)
The focus is to build better relationships between real estate operating companies (aka REOC's) and their institutional financial partners, plus to assist in advancing the utilization of technology to streamline the timely sharing of key data that will create better insights into current & future investment opportunities.
This was a project I had started in January 2018 and ended in August of 2019 (because of internal reshuffling). I will continue my relationship with this prestigious organization.
Currently, I am helping them modernize the operation to serve more households in the community, many of which are single mothers with 3+ children transitioning to a better place (literally and figuratively).
A Republican candidate I met the first night he decided to run. He ran in NC District 1 against a 6-term incumbent named GK Butterfield and lost. Lessons learned and he will try again.
Site 1001 was a building operations data platform that could transform many parts of the commercial real estate business with its intelligence and analytics. My role was to develop a primary set of strategic customers for the next generation product.
Ever been frustrated by the lack of any meaningful, organized "as-built" data? This system is focused on first solving this issue for any owner or large operator.
Great concept but very poor execution.
A One Million Cups friend who has a technology that allows for water to be heated much faster than current technology allows. The purpose is to use this technology within food or beverage production facilities to cut down the amount of time it takes to clean pipes, thus increasing production time. I act as a BD advisor to this firm.
Need to keep learning about new business methods, seek to partner with friends and continue to pursue complete mindfulness.
My eventual goal is to work when I feel like it, networking to learn about new opportunities in the start-up world, merge companies or buy/sell buildings.
There is a battle being fought every day. One side is incumbent, politically connected business who milk the status quo by winning via politics over superior products and/or methodologies. The other side is marketplaces of complete informational transparency, where nobody has an obvious advantage until they develop new ways to use this information to cut down the path to a job done. I will always be on the latter side.
Are you interested in finding out more about how my skills and experience can help you? I am always up for a good dialogue that will help make something better. Like I tell many folks I meet, call me when you want to talk about the most outrageous ideas.
Drop me a line, and I will get back to you soon!