Today’s Innovation is Tomorrow’s Tradition

Walker & DunlopThe inspiration for the Innovator Award is the long and distinguished tradition behind the real estate and urban economics program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A rich history cannot be established without continuous improvement in ideas and in practice. We have been innovative in our teaching, in our research, and through the accomplishments of our alumni and practitioners – all dedicated to making a positive impact in our community and beyond. These award recipients embody the spirit of the Wisconsin real estate tradition in innovation.

The Innovator Award is generously sponsored by Walker & Dunlop. Read more about the gift here. 


Spring 2017 Recipient – Richard Saltzman, CEO & President, Colony Capital, LLC

Richard SaltzmanRichard B. Saltzman currently serves as Chief Executive Officer, President and a member of the Board of Directors of Colony Capital. Prior to joining the Colony Capital business in 2003, Mr. Saltzman spent 24 years in the investment banking business primarily specializing in real estate-related businesses and investments. Most recently, he was a Managing Director and Vice Chairman of Merrill Lynch's investment banking division. As a member of the investment banking operating committee, he oversaw the firm's global real estate, hospitality and restaurant businesses. Previously, he also served as Chief Operating Officer of Investment Banking, had responsibility for Merrill Lynch's Global Leveraged Finance business, and was also responsible for various real estate-related principal investments including the Zell/Merrill Lynch series of funds which acquired more than $3.0 billion of commercial real estate assets and where Mr. Saltzman was a member of the investment committee.

Mr. Saltzman serves on the Board of Directors of Kimco Realty Corporation (NYSE: KIM) and the Board of Trustees of Colony Starwood Homes (NYSE: SFR). Previously, he was also a member of the Board of Governors of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts ("NAREIT"), on the board of directors of the Real Estate Roundtable and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Urban Land Institute, Treasurer of the Pension Real Estate Association, a Director of the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate and a past Chairman of the Real Estate Capital Policy Advisory Committee of the National Realty Committee.

Mr. Saltzman received his B.A. from Swarthmore College in 1977 and an M.S. in Industrial Administration from Carnegie Mellon University in 1979.

Read more about Mr. Saltman's visit. 

Past recipients of this award include: