Rick J. Caruso, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Caruso
A business innovator, dedicated civic leader and actively-involved philanthropist, Rick J. Caruso is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Caruso®, one of the largest and most admired privately held real estate companies in the United States. Under Caruso’s leadership, the company has achieved a compounded annual growth rate of nearly 20% since its inception. Its world-class portfolio of properties continues to expand and includes more than a dozen internationally renowned and award-winning retail, residential, mixed-use, and his newest addition, a resort hotel destination, Rosewood Miramar Beach. The Grove was ranked #2 on Fortune’s list of the 10 highest sales-generating shopping centers in the country. Caruso started his career as a real-estate lawyer in the corporate finance department of one of the nation’s largest law firms. Thereafter, he transitioned from law to pursue his lifelong passion for development, establishing Caruso Affiliated Holdings in 1987. Ignoring the traditional “shopping mall” approach to retail, he adopted a fresh, new strategy for development and revolutionized the industry with imaginative retail and mixed-use destinations that serve as timeless and beloved centers of town.
Early in his career, he served as the youngest Commissioner for the L.A. Department of Water and Power and was selected as President of the L.A. Police Commission. Caruso’s deeply held personal philosophy and commitment to giving back further solidified with the Caruso Family Foundation, dedicated to supporting organizations that improve the lives of at-risk children in need of healthcare and education. In 2018, Caruso was elected as Chair of the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee of the University of Southern California. He also serves as the Chair of the Board of Loyola High School and is on the Board of Councilors of Pepperdine School of Law, and on the Boards for The Irvine Company, St. John’s Hospital, and the Ronald Regan Presidential Library Foundation. In April of 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Caruso became part of both a federal and state-level task force, providing expertise on reopening the economy safely.