Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

PHILADELPHIA-Willard G. Rouse III, founder of Malvern, PA-based Liberty Property Trust, died today at age 60 following a 17-month bout with lung cancer. “Bill was simply our hero,” says Bill Hankowsky, CEO and Rouse’s hand-picked successor at Liberty, in a statement.

“It is impossible to express the loss our employees are feeling today,” Hankowsky continues. “He cannot be replaced, but the culture of this company is indelibly stamped with his uniquely moral view of the individual’s place in the corporation and the corporation’s responsibility to the world.”

With his friends George Congdon, David Hammers and Menard Doswell, Rouse founded Rouse & Associates, an industrial development company, in 1972. In 1994 it became Liberty Property Trust, one of the country’s largest REITs with market capitalization of $4.6 billion. Rouse & Associates spawned many other ongoing businesses in the fields of construction, architecture and housing development.

Through his companies, Rouse was responsible for the creation of more than 50 million sf of office and industrial space in the US and UK, hotels, urban and suburban housing, and the redevelopment and restoration of Philadelphia landmarks. Among them are the 650-acre Great Valley Corporate Center in Malvern that is credited with establishing the Rte. 202 business corridor as a major employment center, and Liberty Place, the 3.4-million-sf, mixed-use Center City landmark skyscraper that dramatically changed the Philadelphia skyline.

Influenced by his uncle James Rouse’s views on social responsibility, Rouse served as a trustee of his uncle’s Enterprise Foundation, which is dedicated to leading low-income people out of poverty.

He also oversaw development of the Pennsylvania Convention Center and the Kimmel Center of the Performing Arts. He served on numerous boards including the Kimmel Center, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Philadelphia Children’s Network, Council of Labor and Industry, Philadelphia Diagnostic and Rehabilitation Center, the Fine Arts School of the University of Pennsylvania, and many others.

He is survived by his wife, Susannah, eight children, two grandchildren, three sisters and a brother. Funeral services will be private. Details for a public memorial service will be disclosed at a later date.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

GlobeSt. NET LEASE Fall 2021Event

This conference brings together the industry's most influential & knowledgeable real estate executives from the net lease sector.

Get More Information


Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.