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What You Don't Know About Darren Sloniger

Chicago Multifamily
Marquette Cos. President Darren Sloniger and his wife

Darren is part of Bisnow's Ascent community of up-and-coming commercial real estate leaders. The top developers and investors under the age of 40 descend on the Ritz Carlton in South Beach Nov. 2-4. See who's attending and apply to be considered for one of the few remaining spots here.

Photo explanation: My wife Shelby and I backpacking through the Tetons last month.
Job title: President at The Marquette Cos.
What that means: Everything from washing the floors to overseeing the staff to doing developments to negotiating deals.
What your company does: We’re an entirely multifamily-focused firm. About 70% of our business is value-add apartments deals we buy as acquisitions and 30% is ground-up development. We also have 11,000 units under management in the central US.
Memorable project: We just had the grand opening for Catalyst, a deal we closed long before the West Loop was cool. It’s nice the West Loop has matured like it has with Google coming in and other offices and restaurants. (Timing is everything.) Our target renter is pretty diverse, but everyone works in the Loop and walks to work.
Hometown: Chicago Heights.
School: Master’s at UIC.
First job: Political activist in South Africa in 1989 and 1990. I believed in the cause and went to work for the anti-apartheid movement, living in the black townships just outside of Pretoria.
Lifelong takeaway: Transition is very difficult and always a tough road... but always worth it.


Photo: Speaking at a recent Bisnow event in Houston.
First CRE job: Working for Bethel New Life in Garfield Park, the largest non-profit developer in Chicago at the time, as VP of real estate development.
Job in another life: Bar owner on a beach in the Caribbean.
Person (living or dead) to meet: Nelson Mandela.
Greatest fear: Not doing anything meaningful in my life.
Daily habit: Every day is different with my job. My favorite habit is sitting on the front porch with a bottle of wine and my beautiful wife.
Favorite music group and song: The National, “Don’t Swallow the Cap.”
Favorite book: Palm Sunday by Kurt Vonnegut.
Favorite movie: We Were Soldiers.
Favorite vacation: Getting married in South Africa four years ago.
Favorite restaurant: Vivo.
Bucket list: I’m heading to Cuba, on my bucket list, this week. I’m going for a friend’s 40th birthday, a three-day party in Havana.
Family facts: Married four years ago to Shelby; we have a blended family of six.
Domestic chore you’re good at: Grilling. Tuna is my specialty.
Hobbies: I just took up fly-fishing. More than anything, I love running. (Especially on the Great Western Trail in the West Suburbs.)