Peebles' rise to the top: From dropout to real estate king
Tycoon shares his life story
- Duration 6:26
- Date Feb 22, 2013
Tycoon shares his life story
Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
Throughout this month we've teamed up with he deals apprentice program celebrate Black History Month and once again FOX Report Weekend anchor Harris Faulkner.
Joins me to tell us about our last -- in this wonderful series and it's quite a remarkable story about the entrepreneurial spirit and a man who's breaking new ground every day Chinese Government show.
We met him in the morning we're now we're gonna dig deeper okay -- music thanks correction.
As an only child Donahue Peebles was raised by his mother in the heart of our nation's capital he grew up at a time when DC was first establishing itself.
As the next great American city and he took full advantage of that unique opportunity.
You -- the largest African American real estate company that has a multibillion dollar portfolio.
The luxury hotels commercial properties.
People say well discuss this at all what -- going in the morning.
The -- -- it got me going in the beginning.
-- I wanna do something transformational.
Worked around the clock to shift at a hotel dormant.
And he taught his daughter.
That there was no limitation.
But what they've accomplished what gets me -- and every -- is try to do something different from building something better.
So that others can benefit from it well.
-- Donahue peoples was born in Washington DC.
And only child his parents divorced when he was just five years old.
So it was a difficult time for me personally I love my father and I love my mother and I want to move -- -- And unfortunately it was.
So while he had a relationship with his father he was raised primarily by his mother.
Inspired by her own entrepreneurial spirit his mother -- gone soon Donahue to Detroit.
Where she got her real state license that started her own business.
She taught me compassion.
She taught me that.
I should stand for something so she gave me an immense amount of self confidence.
As a teenager Donahue and his mother returned to DC.
Where she encouraged her son to become a page on Capitol Hill.
A got a chance to politics of close and to meet.
People in congress who were running the country there was no substitute for that kind of -- You looked at that situation now and and instead of just being loud and awed by the people you are meeting.
He came up with a way to get into that world even deeper and that was to basically.
Raise money for people with you believe it.
Wolf high margin on the from the -- those who got.
Access router has represented a major organizations or businesses or they were significant supported financially and you know it.
It wasn't bad faith to be growing up in DC when you -- You know the great -- come back and and I've grown up in DC.
At that particular time the chances of me sitting here talking to you today are remote.
With the passage of the home relaxed.
The District of Columbia formed an elected its own local government creating incredible opportunities especially for an ambitious young man.
It just 24 after hosting a fund raiser in winning the confidence -- mayor Marion Barry.
He was appointed to his seat on the city's property assessment appeals board.
A position that got him noticed let's talk a little bit about your first deal in DC you were 27 years old.
Know many of -- -- so how are you convinced three investors put up all the money and give you 50%.
Of the ownership if -- -- big deal whisper.
-- how did you pull that off.
Water at the deal I had -- vehicle that was going to make much.
And when you have the vehicle that can make money it's a lot easier to attract much to see you have the proper yes.
And I had and I also had him -- -- that time who believes -- he was committed.
Two and creating opportunity for people like me.
After that first deal his real estate business took off.
There were hotels were offices and then a vacation in Miami which led to a -- location where he bought and rebuilt the royal Paul and -- a private club called.
The -- A month later I got a call from a reporter -- ask me how it felt to be the first African American member of that club.
-- and she explained to me it was a restricted club didn't allow African Americans were Jewish members and I was the first African American member.
Donahue no one tells you in the process you rightly checked to join the best club no one says.
This is going to be the first African American to join our club they just didn't even say anything they've being.
You find out from the reporters so what is your response when.
I was -- surprise and I wasn't intending on breaking that kind of barrier.
An actress -- -- -- do the good news was they were having financial problems and they have to sell and I bought.
So yes I still look up to date is not restricted and got a divert.
Membership now he's come to Manhattan.
With a very clear mission to be the first African American to own -- commercial high rise in the city south of Harlem.
I was astonished to find that there is no major buildings.
South of -- 110 street in Manhattan.
Owned or developed by an African American developer.
Period there's a reason that there's no one who owns the major buildings south of 110 street what is it it's they don't believe they have a chance and that has changed but.
Somebody's got to show that it's possible to have you found project I -- a few.
Are -- days south of a 110 street all of them are alone all but one.
Okay and how's that going good they can be done and if I can come here and do it.
Others who are here to do it and others can come in here doing and so to have the opportunity coming here do business and do it in a way that others haven't done.
That's exciting for me.
Well I was very curious about whether people's would run for office ever since he's back so many candidates who have won and I asked him about running for mayor of New York there's an election coming up this -- you may know.
He told me quote not yet and he never says never.
And that's not enough.
It's been great fun bringing these inspirational stories told her viewers sit on the current account with -- each week as we celebrate -- history that we all share.
And I've so enjoyed watching all of them did a fantastic job in Paris so thank you so much for honoring those for very unique and wonderful people absolutely conference have a great weekend -- to --