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No. 8: Jack Morris

Commercial Real Estate Power 50

Jack MorrisMorris, a Highland Park native, has been in the real estate development business for more than 32 years. When he was 18, he founded Jack Morris Construction which specialized in custom home building. He is now the president and CEO of Piscataway-based Edgewood Properties Inc., which owns, operates and manages commercial and residential real estate throughout the country.

Building on the lessons and experiences he acquired during his time running Jack Morris Construction, Morris still personally oversees all as-pects of Edgewood’s operations. From its excavation division performing all site work, demolition and environmental cleanups, to its in-house en-gineering and architectural firms, to its own law department and property management company, Morris and his wife and partner, Sheryl Weingarten Morris, nurture Edgewood’s commitment to excellence. This vision and hands-on approach, combined with a fiscally conservative philosophy, has enabled Edgewood to become one of the nation’s fastest growing, privately held, real estate development and property management firms with millions of square feet of retail shopping centers and thousands of residential units throughout New Jersey, Massachusetts, California and Florida in its portfolio.

Edgewood has also teamed up with other private and public development companies on large redevelopment projects and mixed-use communi-ties throughout the country. For example, Morris partnered with Joseph Marino to form M&M Realty Partners to redevelop the Garden State Racetrack in Cherry Hill. One of the largest redevelopments in the state’s history, the former racetrack has been transformed into a mixed-use community with about 1,700 residential units, more than 1,200,000 square feet of retail space and a state-of-the-art lifestyle center. Because of Edge-wood’s success and ability to take on projects that other developers would not attempt, other towns and cities, including Somerville and New Brunswick, have designated the firm to revitalize their downtowns.

A more recent example of Morris’ commitment to investing in cities, revitalizing them, and returning them to their past glory is his acquisition of the former Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City. Morris partnered with Hard Rock International to transform this iconic property into one of the larg-est hotel casinos and part of the resort’s gaming rebound.

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