A. Alfred Taubman
|A. Alfred Taubman|
|Born||Adolph Alfred Taubman
January 31, 1924
Pontiac, Michigan, US
|Died||April 17, 2015
Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, US
|Education||The University of Michigan, Lawrence Technological University|
|Known for||Designing the modern indoor shopping mall|
|Net worth||US $3.1 billion (as of May 10, 2015)|
Judith (Mazor) Rounick (1982–2015; his death)
|Children||3 with Kolodney:
--Gayle Taubman Kalisman
--Robert S. Taubman
--William S. Taubman
--Tiffany Rounick Dubin
Fannie Ester Blustin
Adolph Alfred Taubman (January 31, 1924 – April 17, 2015) was an American real estate developer and philanthropist who became a billionaire by building shopping mall developer Taubman Centers into a retailing powerhouse.
Taubman was born in Pontiac, Michigan on January 31, 1924 to Jewish immigrants Fannie Ester Blustin and Philip Taubman. His parents came to the United States from Białystok, in northeastern Poland. His mother was his father's second cousin. Philip took a job with the Wilson Foundry Company in Iowa, transferred to Pontiac in 1920, became a fruit farmer, then began developing commercial real estate and custom homes.
Shopping mall development
His developments such as the Mall at Short Hills in New Jersey continue to be ranked among the most profitable shopping centers in the country. He made a fortune which Forbes magazine estimated at $3.1 billion and was on the list of Forbes 400 Richest Americans for two decades.
Taubman bought the ailing British auction house, Sotheby's, in 1983, acting as a white knight when the company was threatened by a hostile and unwanted takeover by Marshall Cogan and Stephen Swid of General Felt. He revived the fortunes of Sotheby's, which had been slumping in the eighties; he took the company public in 1988. His family divested controlling interest in Sotheby's by September 2005.
In the early 2000s, an investigation into alleged price-fixing between Sotheby's and rival auction house Christie's led to a confession by Sotheby's CEO Diana Brooks of an elaborate price fixing scheme with her counterpart at Christie's, Christopher Davidge. In a plea bargain arrangement, prosecutors offered to keep her out of prison if she agreed to implicate Taubman. She did, and thereafter Taubman was convicted in a jury trial of price fixing. He was fined $7.5 million (USD) and imprisoned for ten months in 2002 for antitrust violations. Taubman was released in 2003, and continued to insist on his innocence.
From 1983 to 1984, Taubman was the majority owner of the Michigan Panthers of the United States Football League. Although the Panthers acquired a fairly loyal following and won the first USFL title in 1983, the USFL's decision to move from the spring to the fall led Taubman to merge his team with the Oakland Invaders for the 1985 season, with himself as majority owner of the Invaders. That team folded along with the rest of the USFL after the 1985 season.
Taubman was married twice:
- In 1948, Taubman married his college sweetheart, Reva Kolodney. In 1977, they divorced after 29 years of marriage. They had three children:
- Gayle Taubman Kalisman (b. 1951) is co-chair of the Taubman Institute and a University of Michigan alumn.
- Robert S. Taubman (b. 1953) serves as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Taubman Company.
- William S. Taubman (b. 1958) serves as Chief Operating Officer of the Taubman Company.
In 1982, he married Judith Mazor Rounick (b. 1943 as Jehudit Mazor), the daughter of a paste jewelry importer-exporter and a former Miss Israel in 1962. Judy grew up in Israel and had two children from a previous marriage to clothing manufacturer Herbert Rounick: Christopher Rounick and Tiffany Rounick Dubin (formerly married to real estate developer Louis Dubin). Judith's brother is Boaz Mazor who is the sales director for Oscar de la Renta.
Taubman has donated large sums to the University of Michigan, and many buildings there are named after him, including the A. Alfred Taubman Biomedical Science Research Building, the Taubman Health Sciences Library and Taubman Health Care Center. A school within the university is also named for him: the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. Taubman is also a major sponsor of disease research: his latest donation, a gift of $5 million to support the University of Michigan's Dr. Eva Feldman's and Dr. Yehoash Raphael's research, was aimed at the development of new treatments for Lou Gehrig's Disease and deafness, respectively. In 2011, Taubman donated $56 million to medical research. These donations brought his lifetime giving to Michigan to $141 million.
The A. Alfred Taubman Student Services Center at Lawrence Technological University was completed in 2006, and ground was broken in September, 2015 for the A. Alfred Taubman Engineering, Architecture, and Life Sciences Complex at Lawrence Tech. Taubman had also taught a class at LTU focusing on his retail real estate development experience.
The A. Alfred Taubman Center for Design Education at the College for Creative Studies was completed in 2009, in which Taubman contributed $15 million to the $145 million restoration and remodeling of what once was the General Motors Argonaut Building.
- Mason, Christopher. The Art of the Steal: Inside the Sotheby's-Christie's Auction House Scandal. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons. 2004. ISBN 0-399-15093-5
- Taubman, A. Alfred. Threshold Resistance: The Extraordinary Career of a Luxury Retailing Pioneer. ThresholdResistance.com New York: Collins. 2007 ISBN 978-0-06-123537-5
- "Alfred Taubman - Forbes". 2015-05-10. Archived from the original on 2015-05-10. Retrieved 2015-10-25.
- Robert D. McFadden (April 18, 2015). "A. Alfred Taubman, Former Sotheby’s Owner and Mall Developer, Dies at 91". New York Times. Retrieved 2015-04-19.
Adolph Alfred Taubman was born in Pontiac, Mich., on Jan. 31, 1924, one of four children of German-Jewish immigrants, Philip and Fannie Ester Blustin Taubman. His father was a builder, but the family was hit hard in the Depression and the schoolboy, who stuttered, was dyslexic and had difficulty reading and writing, took part-time jobs.
- Threshold Resistance: The Extraordinary Career of a Luxury Retailing Pioneer By A. Alfred Taubman retrieved August 10, 2012
- Caitlin A. Johnson (April 15, 2007). "For Billionaire There's Life After Jail". CBS News. Retrieved December 29, 2009.
Alfred Taubman is a legend in retailing. For 40 years, he's been one of America's most successful developers of shopping centers.
- Murphy, Tara."Taubman Bid Gets Sweeter"
- "White Knight" – Time magazine – Monday, June 27, 1983
- Rohleder, Anna. "Time Line: The Rise Of Christie's And Sotheby's" – forbes.com
- "A. Alfred Taubman". The New York Times.
- "Ex-Sotheby's chair convicted on price fixing charges" – CNN.com – December 5, 2001
- "Ex-Sotheby's boss convicted" – CNN.com-Europe – December 5, 2001
- "Dan Ackman, "Outclassed"". The American Lawyer, Feb. 2002.
- Rohleder, Anna. "Who's Who In The Sotheby's Price-Fixing Trial" – forbes.com
- "Ex-Sotheby's chairman sentenced", CNN Money Magazine – April 22, 2002
- Thane Peterson (April 30, 2007). "From Slammer Back To Glamour". Business Week. Retrieved December 29, 2009.
- Runk, David."Taubman sheds light on Sotheby's scandal" – Associated Press, The Boston Globe – April 8, 2007
- History @ A&W Rootbeer
- Medicine at Michigan: "A. Alfred Taubman: The Vision, the Legacy – Taubman’s extraordinary $100 million commitment vastly expands transformative medical research at Michigan and ranks Taubman as the U-M’s most generous benefactor" by Jane Myers Spring 2011
- Taubman Company Website: Robert S. Taubman – Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer retrieved August 10, 2012
- Taubman Company Website: William S. Taubman – Chief Operating Officer retrieved August 10, 2012
- San Francisco Gate: A day in the life of ... Boaz Mazor" by Carolyne Zinko August 22, 2004
- Pagentopolis: "Jehudit Mazor" retrieved August 10, 2012
- New York Times: "Bringing the Party to Sotheby's" By ELIZABETH HAYT September 26, 1999
- [[New York Social Diary: Sunday in New York] March 27, 2006
- "Mall mogul A. Alfred Taubman passes away at 91". WDIV-Detroit (clickondetroit.com). April 17, 2015.
- Gavin, Kara."Attacking Lou Gehrig’s disease from all angles: $5M gift from A. Alfred Taubman will support U-M research" University of Michigan Health System – May 23, 2007
- A. Alfred Taubman Student Services Center @ Lawrence Technological University – Southfield, Michigan
- Howes, Daniel."CCS Center Proves Detroit Can Rebuild"] Detroit News – September 22, 2009