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Goldie Wolfe Miller On 10 Years Of The Goldie Initiative

The Goldie Initiative's Goldie Wolfe Miller

Goldie Wolfe Miller was a unicorn when she began her commercial real estate career with Rubloff in 1972. Women were a rarity in the industry, and particularly where Miller started her career as an office leasing agent. 

"There were no women in office leasing when I started," Miller said. 

Miller became Rubloff's top producer nationwide. That success set the stage for a 45-year career in the industry. When Rubloff decided to focus solely on development, she launched her own firm, Goldie B. Wolfe & Co., in 1990. Within nine years, it was the largest women-owned real estate firm in the country, with more than $4B in sales, and Miller sold her company to Insignia Financial Group in 1998. Insignia would be acquired by CBRE five years later

Miller still has a passion for the industry and, with the help of her husband, Jack, became involved with strategic philanthropy. Ten years ago, Roosevelt University approached Miller about launching a program to mentor the future women leaders in real estate. The Goldie B. Wolfe Miller Women Leaders in Real Estate Initiative has since been certified as a 501(c)3 nonprofit and has expanded to Northwestern University, DePaul University, the University of Chicago and the University of Wisconsin's Grasskamp School of Real Estate.

"We wanted to focus only on grad students who were already working in the industry who have leadership potential," Miller said. "We pair them with successful women mentors becoming a mentor for other women in the industry, and encourage them to develop their networking and leadership skills." Since its forming, the Goldie Initiative has graduated 60 women that Miller calls "Goldie's Scholars."

The Goldie Initiative is celebrating its 10th anniversary 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14.