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CLEVELAND-The 77-year-old founder, chairman emeritus and director of Developers Diversified Realty Corp. Bert L. Wolstein, died Monday of a heart attack at Hillcrest Hospital in Mayfield Heights.Bert Wolstein founded DDR in 1965 initially to build Kmart stores, and grew it into one of the country’s largest and most successful publicly traded REITs. After the company went public in 1993, he served as its chairman until 1997. Upon his retirement from the company, he and John McGill founded Heritage Development Co., a developer and operator of shopping centers. Wolstein is the father of DDR’s current chairman and chief executive officer, Scott Wolstein. Wolstein also is survived by his wife, Iris, and his daughter, Cheryl Wolstein Faigus.”All of the employees of Developers Diversified lost a friend and inspirational leader today,” says DDR president and COO, David Jacobstein. “He will always be in our thoughts.”

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