Shenehon Center for Real Estate
2010 Inductee: William Reiling
Published November 10, 2010
In the real estate industry, Mr. William Reiling is known for his energy, enthusiasm and integrity. His early life as a poor farm kid has given him a unique perspective that is evident in his business dealings today.
Temporarily leaving the world of commercial banking in 1973, Mr. Reiling became president and co-owner of Towle Real Estate Company. Under his leadership, the firm posted solid and profitable growth throughout the 1970s and early 1980s. During this time, Towle expanded its property management business outside of the Twin Cities to include offices in Tulsa, Cedar Rapids, Denver, Des Moines and Eau Claire. With many companies expanding to multiple locations nationwide, Towle began to provide services over larger geographic areas. To meet this need, the company founded American Realty Services Group with two other firms: F.C. Tucker in Indianapolis and Turley Martin in St. Louis. This group eventually became known as Colliers International.
In 1983, Mr. Reiling’s son Mark joined the company and started Towle Properties, a major investor in the Twin Cities. Towle Properties acquired more than $60 million of office, industrial and retail properties. The company survived the savings and loan crisis by taking on 65 properties placed in receivership and forming a joint venture to receive more than $1.1 billion in property assignments from the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC), a government-owned asset management company charged with liquidating assets and restoring confidence in the financial and commercial real estate markets.
This time also marked a shift in company leadership as Mr. Reiling assumed the role of CEO and chairman, and Mark Reiling took over as president. With a goal of retiring by age 65, Mr. Reiling sold the appraisal, brokerage, property management consulting and research divisions of the company in 1994 to his son Mark and daughter-in-law Kathleen Nye-Reiling. The mortgage banking operation was later sold, as well.
Today, Mr. Reiling is chairman of Sunrise Community Banks, which includes Franklin National Bank, Park Midway Bank and University National Bank. These banks are known for their inclusive lending and efforts to help revitalized underserved areas of the community. The understanding that grew from his upbringing as a farm kid has evolved to helping those in inner cities who do not have access to capital.
“In all he does – banking, community development, nonprofit and philanthropic ventures – Bill has a passionate commitment to developing leaders of integrity.”
– Monsignor Callahan, The St. Paul Seminary School of Divinity of the University of St. Thomas.
“He leads both by word and example. He has a value-based philosophy that says, ‘ Doing right is not inconsistent with doing well,’ so that focusing completely on the community in which the banks are located will create sales, profit and loyalty.”
–Rick Beeson, President of St. Anthony Park Bank
“Bill is a win-win player. If the deal does not work for all parties involved, then it is not a deal Bill wants to do. His word is his bond.”
– Mark Reiling, Cassidy Turley
“Bill has given back to the community in so many ways. He is well known and respected within the real estate community. One particular example is his endeavor with Franklin Bank. Loaning money to inner city individuals who would not have had a chance to receive loans from any other bank. He helped people to get back on their feet and given them the opportunity to start their own business.”
– Luigi Bernardi, Aurora Investments, LLC