Tag Archives: sam kitchell

Frank Lloyd Wright, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011

Del E. Webb: A Pioneer In Arizona's Construction Industry

From high school dropout to New York Yankees owner to renowned construction mogul, Del E. Webb created a company that evolved into one of the largest developers in the state and the U.S., thus earning him the crown as the most influential person in Arizona’s commercial real estate history over the past 100 years.

Born in Fresno, Calif., Webb cut his academic career short in 1915, taking an interest in carpentry and baseball. For nearly 13 years, Webb worked as a carpenter strictly for companies with baseball teams in order to make his living and stay close to his sports passion. In 1927, at the age of 28, Webb moved to Phoenix after contracting typhoid fever. The next year, he began focusing solely on construction.

Del E. Webb, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011His first projects included rebuilding a Sears store, local grocery markets and public sector projects, especially schools. With these jobs, Webb was able to stay afloat during the Great Depression and keep his company moving forward.

After a combined project with The White Miller Construction Company, the Del E. Webb Construction Company was well on its way to being one of the top contractors in Arizona. He became so successful that in 1945 Webb and two other partners purchased the New York Yankees for about $3M. Webb was a co-owner until 1964.

During World War II, Webb was contracted to build air bases and military installations in Arizona and Southern California, but it wasn’t until 1960 that Webb’s construction would truly take the housing industry by storm.

Webb’s Sun City housing project addressed the need for senior communities and prospered well into the 1990s. With a shopping and recreation center, golf course and five house models, Sun City truly put Webb on the real estate map and even landed him on the cover of Time Magazine. Today, Webb’s Sun Cities continue to grow.

In 2001, the Del Webb Corp. was purchased by Pulte Homes, which has since merged with Centex Corp. to become the PulteGroup.

Webb died at age 75 in Rochester, Minn., following surgery for lung cancer, but his legacy lives on. There is the Del E. Webb School of Construction at Arizona State University, the Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center in Sun City, the Del E. Webb Center for the Performing Arts in Wickenburg, and the Del E. Webb Outpatient Center in Prescott Valley, just to name a few.

For more information about Del E. Webb’s PulteGroup, visit pultegroupinc.com.

AZRE Magazine May/June 2011

AZRE Magazine May/June 2011

Centennial Series: Most Influential People In Arizona Commercial Real Estate

As part of AZRE magazine’s Centennial Series, find out who made the list of the most influential people in Arizona Commercial Real Estate.

Most Influential People In Arizona Commercial Real Estate


Roy P. Drachman Sr. (1906 – 2002)
Roy Drachman Realty Company, Real Estate Development

Roy Drachman, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011Known as “Mr. Tucson,” Roy Drachman’s love for the city helped put Tucson on the map. A real estate tycoon who landed the Hughes Missile Systems Company site, Drachman also petitioned to build better streets, waterways and schools in his beloved city. He is responsible for bringing Major League Baseball teams to Arizona for spring training (the Cleveland Indians began training in Tucson in 1947). Throughout his career, Drachman donated generously to the University of Arizona, mostly for its cancer research. He funded a scholarship at the UA College of Architecture for upperclassmen who show proficiency in design. UA named its Institute for Land and Regional Development Studies after him. (Photo: Drachman family)


Grady Gammage, Jr.
Gammage & Burnham, Attorneys At Law, Real Estate Lawyer

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011For the past 20 years, Grady Gammage, Jr. has practiced law at Gammage & Burnham, taking on real estate projects such as redevelopment, high-rise buildings and planned communities. Gammage was a board member of the Central Arizona Project for two, six-year terms, beginning in 1996. Gammage’s urban mixed projects in Tempe won him three architectural awards. He is also affiliated with Arizona State University as an adjunct professor at the College of Law, the College of Architecture and Urban Design, as well as a Senior Fellow at the Morrison Institute. (Photo: Gammage & Burnham)


William Haug
Jennings Haug & Cunningham, Real Estate Lawyer

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011William Haug has dedicated much of his career to developing and establishing construction and surety law in Arizona. His leadership in the practice was recognized with his induction in the inaugural Maricopa County Bar Association Hall of Fame for his role in developing the practice of construction law. Haug developed his practice in complex dispute resolution in construction, fidelity and surety law. For more than 35 years, Haug has been an arbitrator and mediator. He joined the firm in 1981, became one of the original construction lawyers in Arizona, and paved the way for the practice to develop as construction across the state grew with its population. (Photo: Jennings Haug & Cunningham)


Sam Kitchell (1923 – 2006)
Kitchell Construction, General Contractor

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011Originally named Kitchell Phillips Contractors, Sam Kitchell started the company in 1950 with then partner James B. Phillips. Its construction of Safeway stores and local schools helped Kitchell evolve into one of the top 10 largest private companies in Arizona and one of the top 75 construction companies in the country. One of Kitchell’s main focuses included healthcare projects, which led to the construction of Good Samaritan Hospital in Phoenix, the Mayo Clinic of Scottsdale, Phoenix Children’s Hospital and Scripps Memorial Hospital in California, to name a few. (Photo: Kitchell Construction)


J. Daryl Lippincott (1924 – 2008)
CB Richard Ellis (CBRE), Real Estate Broker

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011Daryl Lippincott directed the CBRE Phoenix office from its opening in 1952. With retail stores such as Goldwater’s, Diamond’s, Leonard’s Luggage and Switzers, Lippincott helped build Arizona’s first shopping mall — Park Central. In 1957, Lippincott helped the Phoenix office expand to other services, including mortgage loans, property management and was later announced as the head of CBRE’s Southwest Division. Lippincott shaped both CBRE and the commercial real estate industry with his retail and commercial projects. (Photo: CBRE)


John F. Long (1920 – 2008)
John F. Long Properties, Homebuilder

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011John F. Long symbolizes the Phoenix transition from desert to urban city. His 1954 Maryvale project, named after his wife, established a base for all future affordable housing in the Valley. With an emphasis on quality, Long also built the Solar One housing development, getting a head start on sustainable practices. Long’s projects were built with everything in mind; hospitals, golf courses and shopping centers, giving homeowners whatever they needed within close reach. As one of Arizona’s most influential builders, Long is in the Arizona Business Hall of Fame and was awarded the first WESTMARC Lifetime Achievement Award, which has since been named after him. (Photo: John F. Long Properties)


Rusty Lyon
Westcor, Retail Development and Management

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011During his more than 40 years as CEO of Westcor, Rusty Lyon led the way in retail development and continues to contribute to the public’s shopping needs. Retailers have turned Westcor into the largest owner of commercial real estate properties, with projects such as Scottsdale Fashion Square, Chandler Fashion Center, San Tan Village, Flagstaff Mall & The Marketplace, Prescott Gateway Mall, Biltmore Fashion Park and The Boulders Resort. (Photo: Macerich)


M. M. Sundt (1863 – 1942)
Sundt Construction Co., General Contractor

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011Sundt Construction was founded in 1890 by Mauritz Martinsen Sundt, a Norwegian ship carpenter who immigrated to the U.S. as a teenager. The company’s early projects were homes and farm structures in northern New Mexico. In 1929, Sundt built a Methodist Church in Tucson. The project was directed by John Sundt, one of Mauritz’s 12 children. John liked Tucson, and decided to stay. Sundt‘s clients today are industrial, commercial and government projects, both nationally and internationally. In 1936 the company was awarded a contract for six projects, one of which was the expansion of the University of Arizona’s Tucson campus. In 1956, Sundt began construction on one of its biggest military projects, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson. (Photo: Sundt Construction)


Frank Lloyd Wright (1867 – 1959)
Architect, Interior Designer

Arizona Commercial Real Estate, AZRE Magazine May/June 2011Frank Lloyd Wright spent most of his life designing homes, buildings and museums that changed the world of architecture. Wright designed more than 1,000 projects and more than 500 were actually built. Thirteen are in Arizona and are some of his most famous designs. Wright’s summer home, Taliesin West in Scottsdale, is also home to the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation’s international headquarters, where an archive of all his sketches and projects is housed. ASU students have a constant reminder of Wright’s architectural genius with the Grady Gammage Memorial Auditorium, named after Dr. Grady Gammage, ASU’s president from 1933 to 1959. (Photo: Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation)

AZRE Magazine May/June 2011