Promotions, SBA award and SoDak governor's mansion

  • Blog Post by: Janet Moore
  • August 19, 2013 - 11:34 AM

The email-box runneth over. Here's a sampling. . . .

Recently, Minnetonka-based Founders Properties LLC named Wade Lau president and CEO. The firm's board cited Lau's 25 years of commercial real estate experience and his role in crafting Founders' investment and asset management platform. Lau is a veteran of Opus Properties, CB Richard Ellis and Shelard Group.

He graduated from Harvard College with a degree in economics and has an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Founders is a privately held provider of commercial real estate investment and management services. It was formed by Best Buy Founder Richard Schulze and Opus Founder Gerald Rauenhorst.

Mortenson Construction has received the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 2013 Region V Dwight D. Eisenhower Award for Excellence for Construction. Mortenson was recognized as the overall winner for Region V, which includes large business contractors in Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

The award contractors that have excelled by using small, disadvantaged, and women-owned businesses as suppliers and subcontractors. Mortenson’s Federal Contracting Group currently awards more than 75 percent of its total subcontracted dollars to small, women-owned, and disadvantaged businesses.

“Mortenson is a family-owned business that got its start at a kitchen table so we understand the importance of opportunity in the marketplace," said Mark Ruffino, vice president and general manager of the firm's Federal Contracting Group, in a statement. "We deeply value our business partnerships.”

According to this website, a bank-owned 7,000-square foot mansion in Rapid City, S.D., which was once the state residence for 16 South Dakota governors from 1936 until 2003, will be auctioned off this Thursday, a real estate foreclosure casualty. Sturgis Real Estate Co. is handling the auction.

The home is located on 17.5 acres with a lake and working windmills, and features 18 rooms, four dining rooms, a large kitchen, six bedrooms, four bathrooms, and heated basement floors.

Leon Brodie, a retired South Dakota dentist, paid $40,000 in 2006 for the home after it had been disassembled into three sections and stored in Pierre, the state's capitol.

The website claims he spent $400,000 to move the home to Rapid City, and another $3 million more to restore it as an event center for weddings, graduations and parties. He hosted a number of prominent events including those on behalf of several South Dakota governors and the 50-year wedding anniversary for former Gov. Harvey Wollman. But the business went sour and Brodie still owes $500,000 to a South Dakota bank.

The mansion was built during the Great Depression and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was subsequently replaced with a new 73-room, 14,000-square-foot mansion.

Janet Moore covers commercial real estate for the Star Tribune.

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