Childress Klein Gives $2.5 Million to UNC Charlotte's Center for Real Estate

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

CHARLOTTE - Sept. 23, 2015 - Childress Klein is donating $2.5 million to UNC Charlotte’s Center for Real Estate, which is being named the Childress Klein Center for Real Estate. The gift will fund a new endowed professorship, master’s student professional training programs, and faculty fellowships related to research on real estate and urban economics topics. With an expected match from The State of North Carolina for the professorship, the total impact of the gift will be $3.2 million.

The naming of the center and the gift were announced on Sept. 23 at UNC Charlotte Center City, during a luncheon attended by university officials and real estate, business, and community leaders. Don Childress and Fred Klein of Childress Klein made the announcement alongside UNC Charlotte Chancellor Philip L. Dubois and Belk College of Business Dean Steven Ott.

Real estate industry supporters have previously raised more than $5.5 million for the Center, which provides regional and national research on real estate and urban economics, a master of science in real estate degree program, and outreach activities in partnership with the Charlotte business community. The gift by Childress Klein is the largest single gift in the center’s 10-year history.

Childress Klein is a longtime supporter of UNC Charlotte, beginning in 1990 with the Childress Klein Scholarship for Merit, then again in 1999 with the Childress Klein Faculty Research Funds, and later the Childress Klein Fellowship Fund, as well as gifts to the Chancellor's Fund.

Don Childress and Fred Klein, the senior managing partners of Childress Klein, say the gift is important for the University's development and Charlotte’s continued growth.

“We believe that UNC Charlotte has been instrumental to the growth and development of the Charlotte region,” Klein said. “The Childress Klein Center for Real Estate is an example of how an industry can support the education and research which in turn provides talent, ideas, and expertise directly back to the industry,” Childress said.

UNC Charlotte Chancellor Philip L. Dubois said the gift helps lead the University into the future.

“UNC Charlotte and the Center for Real Estate have a long-standing and deepening relationship with Childress Klein,” said Dubois. “The Childress Klein Center for Real Estate embodies the successful partnership between the university and the real estate industry - a relationship strengthened by a mutual interest in growing and supporting the North Carolina economy.”

Components of the gift include:

  • The Childress Klein Distinguished Professor in Real Estate and Urban Economics - $1.3 million

    Funds will honor an existing member of the faculty of the Belk College of Business or recruit an outstanding scholar to conduct teaching and research in urban economics. Through the Distinguished Professors Endowment Trust Fund, the State of North Carolina is expected to match the $1,333,333 contribution in the amount of $666,667, bringing the endowment of the professorship to $2 million.

  • The Childress Klein Fund for Professional Training for Master of Science in Real Estate Students - $600,000

    Funds will provide support for workshops, geared towards the real estate industry, for students in the master’s program and real estate industry professionals.

  • The Childress Klein Faculty Fellowships - $600,000

    Funds will provide resources to allow faculty to focus on applied research activities on real estate topics. These funds also provide Ph.D. student funding to attract talented scholars to UNC Charlotte to study real estate.

Ott, who is co-director of the center and the John Crosland, Sr. Distinguished Chair in Real Estate and Development, said the gift will have direct impact on the Charlotte real estate community.

“Charlotte is a hub for commercial real estate in the region,” said Ott. “The gift positions Charlotte and UNC Charlotte as a leader in real estate scholarship, education and research.  It will be transformational for students in the Master of Science in Real Estate program and for the community that will benefit from the research and outreach.”

Childress Klein is a full-service firm offering a range of products and services covering all aspects of commercial real estate. For more than 35 years, the professionals at Childress Klein have developed over 42 million square feet of office, industrial, retail and multifamily properties in major markets throughout Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida and currently control a portfolio of approximately 30 million square feet.

The Childress Klein Center for Real Estate at UNC Charlotte was established in 2005 to further the knowledge of real estate, public policy and urban economics in the professional community through its teaching, research and community outreach activities. It has been ranked among the 20 most active research institutions in real estate for the past decade. The center administers the M.S. in Real Estate program, the MBA concentration and certificate programs in real estate finance and development, and manages programming and outreach to the Real Estate Alumni Association and Real Estate Advisory Board. 



Media Contacts:
Kirsten Khire, Belk College of Business: 704-687-7601 | 704-885-4134 |

Buffie Stephens, UNC Charlotte Public Relations: 704-687-5830 | 980-355-3110 |

Liz Patterson, Childress Klein: 704-343-4380  |