Park Center Named NAIOP Georgia’s 2021 Office Development of the Year
Steve Van Amburgh
Chief Executive Officer
- 41 years of experience
- 33 years at KDC
Steve Van Amburgh
Chief Executive Officer
It’s no surprise that Steve Van Amburgh is focused on and passionate about building great facilities. After all, he is the CEO of KDC, one of the nation’s top developers. But you might be surprised to know that he’s even more passionate about and committed to building relationships.
“The most successful projects require even more successful relationships,” Steve contends. “Our clients, our vendors, our financial partners … they all mention KDC is second to none, and I believe it’s because of the long and lasting relationships we’ve built with each of them.”
The most successful projects require enduring and successful relationships
Steve has been with KDC and its predecessor company, The Koll Company, for over 30 years. In 1989, he founded the company’s Dallas office, which now serves as KDC’s corporate headquarters. Prior to joining The Koll Company, he spent eight years developing properties in the Las Colinas development adjacent to the DFW Airport.
Steve assumed leadership of KDC in 2001. In his current role, he manages the firm’s strategic planning, coordinates new business development efforts, and is involved in acquisition and development activities for the firm and its regional offices.
As KDC’s CEO, Steve is dedicated to cultivating a culture of trust and selflessness. “People want to do business with our KDC team because we put others first,” he says. “Our people have a strong dose of empathy and are super sensitive and focused on the needs of our clients. We work closely with our clients to help them make good decisions. We always put people first.”
Under Steve’s leadership, KDC has completed more than 150 corporate build-to-suit office and industrial projects valued in excess of $9 billion and totaling more than 37 million square feet. In addition to its Dallas HQ office, KDC has regional offices in Atlanta and Charlotte.
KDC has worked with some of the largest corporations in the world including: Toyota, State Farm Insurance, JPMorgan Chase, FedEx, Raytheon, Comcast, NBC Universal, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Liberty Mutual, and Fluor Corporation.
Like a parent who’s asked to pick his favorite child, Steve insists it’s impossible to pick a “favorite” project. “The minute you think one is better, more complicated, and more memorable, another one comes along that is just as important and special,” he explains. “We really are thankful and appreciate every project because it is an incredible honor and responsibility when someone selects you to build and develop their new corporate home. We never take that selection lightly.”
When Steve assumed his current role, he made some strategic changes that changed KDC’s course and improved the company. Among those changes: focusing on corporate office build-to-suit projects and centralizing all primary decision making in Dallas.
A native Texan who grew up in the Dallas Park Cities area, Steve briefly left the Lone Star State to attend college. He earned a Bachelor of Science in economics and commerce from Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia.
Steve has steered KDC through several real estate cycles—the economic ups and downs that have doomed many other developers and owners. Under his leadership, the firm has been named the NAIOP North Texas Developer of the Year six times and has been awarded numerous best real estate deals by the Dallas Business Journal and DCEO.
Steve, meanwhile, was named a Best Boss in the Business by Real Estate Forum in 2016. “The best business advice I’ve ever received was to surround yourself with the best people you can, get out of their way, and then let them do their job! That’s exactly what we have done,” he says.
Outside of work, Steve invests in the three Fs— family, faith, and friends. He and his wife have three adult children and four grandchildren (for now). They spend a lot of time together at the family lake house in the Texas Hill Country or the family ranch in West Texas where Steve can indulge in his favorite hobbies: hunting and golf.
Steve is an active member of Highland Park Presbyterian Church. Currently, he serves as co-chairman of the building committee, where HPPC is undertaking a large, new building project. In the future, he hopes to become more involved in philanthropic and faith-based endeavors.
“Working is wonderful,” Steve says. “Giving back is even better… seems like the more you receive the greater the obligation to ‘give back.’”