CHICAGO — Jeffrey Davis, the founder and CEO of Chicago-based seniors housing capital markets firm Cambridge Realty Capital, has passed away. He was 69 years old.
While the company said the death was sudden, details were not disclosed.
Davis’ passion for business began early in his life, and he channeled it into his studies at the University of Illinois, where he graduated with a degree in finance. He went on to pursue a graduate degree in real estate investment analysis and appraisal from the University of Wisconsin in 1976. Upon graduation, he joined Baird & Warner Inc., a Chicago-based real estate firm, and within just a few years became the youngest senior vice president in Baird & Warner’s 150-year history.
In spite of his fast track to corporate success, Davis had a burning desire to forge his own path, and in 1983 he left Baird & Warner to launch Cambridge Realty Capital. Cambridge initially provided general commercial real estate lending and merchant banking, and the company quickly gained a reputation for financial expertise and real estate acumen.
Andrew Erkes joined forces with Davis just a few years later, and in the 1990s they made the decision to shift Cambridge’s specialty to seniors housing and healthcare lending. Over the course of three decades, Davis grew the business from a staff of one to a company with over a dozen employees and $6.5 billion in closed seniors housing transactions.
“Davis was a visionary and trailblazer in the seniors housing and healthcare finance sector and saw its immense potential and growth long before others deemed it as a class outside of commercial real estate,” says Erkes. “Cambridge mourns this tragic loss, and our thoughts and prayers are with Jeff’s wife, Karen, his daughter, Taylor, and his extended family.”