For more than four decades, Triple Crown Corporation has shaped Pennsylvania real estate through construction, land acquisition, and residential and commercial property management. The company has built an impressive portfolio of properties ranging from warehouses, office and retail space, rental communities, and even vacant lots that can be developed into just about anything to need.
At the heart of Triple Crown Corporation is its people. As part of the senior leadership team, Mark Disanto, the company’s CEO offers valuable insight into the industry, and the vision for the company. Mark has built a successful career from a blend of hard work, knowledge, and experience. But beyond his professional resume, there is a lot we can learn from Mark on a more personal level.
Take a look as Omni Realty Group goes “beyond the bio” and asks Mark for answers to questions you’re not likely to read on his Linkedin profile.
Omni: Describe a “typical” work day for you.
Mark Disanto: A typical day for me starts around 5:30 or 6:00 AM. I either exercise at home or play tennis in the morning. I am usually at the office between 7:00 and 8:00 AM and very rarely leave before 6:00 PM. Throw in a couple nighttime meetings with municipalities and extra time on Saturdays and in the evenings and the work week is usually 60 to 70 hours.
Omni: What is the best part of your job?
Mark Disanto: I have great flexibility in my job. I have time in the office. I have time inspecting job sites and looking at new acquisitions. I like the flexibility. However, the best part of my job is watching the company grow and seeing the new leadership expand the company both in the property management and construction divisions as well as our geographical footprint.
Omni: What has been the most difficult part of your job?
Mark Disanto: The continued regulation of our industry is probably the most troublesome and difficult part of our business. There are so many regulations in the building codes, the land development and subdivision codes, other state permitting processes, as well as federal regulations. None of these take into account the reasonableness of the burdens placed upon the builder and developer, cost versus benefit and time delays. We continue to hear about a shortage of affordable housing and the reason for this is strictly due to the regulatory environment we live in today.
Omni: If your career never took you into real estate, what else would you likely be doing?
Mark Disanto: I would probably be on Wall Street running a hedge fund and giving Ray Dalio a run for his money.
Omni: What has been your favorite Triple Crown project, and why?
Mark Disanto: I think I have two. The first was done about 17 years ago in Silver Spring Township. Georgetown Crossing was our first large apartment community containing 400 townhome and flat stack apartments. It is a beautiful property off route 114 in Silver Spring Township and our premier community. We still own it and will probably never sell it.
More recently Blue Ridge Village tops the list. This is an exciting mixed use community in lower Paxton Township that combines retail, commercial, apartments, townhomes and single-family homes along with a 32 acre park. This is a true livable, walkable community. The approval process was collaborative and respectful of the community and the Township. It took a lot of effort on our part, but I can assure the residents that this will be a premiere community that will significantly enhance the township.
Omni: What project has been your biggest failure or disappointment?
Mark Disanto: We bought a property out of market about 20 years ago at an auction and did not have sufficient due diligence completed upon it. When we went to the township for the first time it was like walking into a hornets’ nest. We eventually decided to cut our losses and re-sold the ground at auction for a loss. Out of the hundreds of developments and projects that we have done, we’ve only lost money on two deals. We are pretty proud of this.
Omni: What motivates you?
Mark Disanto: I just like to be engaged and like to see the company and the employees succeed. We set our strategy for three-year time frames and have quarterly meetings with our strategy review team and make sure we are all rowing the ship in the same direction. When everybody has purpose and they are all heading to the same goal line and supporting one another along the way, it makes for a very fun journey. I don’t need to work as hard as I do, I just have too much enjoyment with it to slow down.
Omni: Do you have any pet peeves?
Mark Disanto: I don’t think so. I get very frustrated when my volleys are not crisp on the tennis court!
Omni: When you’re not in the office, where can you most likely be found?
Mark Disanto: When I am in Harrisburg, it is usually with the family which includes the five grandkids, or working around the house and in the garden in the summertime, or in a tree stand in the fall trying to find the elusive big buck, or on the tennis court 2 to 4 days a week. If out of Harrisburg it could be anywhere in the world!
Omni: And finally, what career advice would you give to your younger self?
Mark Disanto: I would say, do not doubt your abilities. If you have an idea you want to execute then write it down and write a plan on how to achieve it. Review the plan both upstream and downstream with your staff. If you don’t have a staff, take it to people you respect and really try to poke holes in it. Once it’s well vetted, then work diligently and hard at it. A lot of people say this person was “lucky.” That’s usually not the case; a lot of strategic thought and hard work creates what people call luck.
Omni Realty Group thanks Mark for such candid and thoughtful answers to these questions. There is a lot of inspiration that can be found “beyond the bio” and on a more personal level. You can learn more about Triple Crown Corporation and its services by visiting them at https://www.triplecrowncorp.com or on Facebook and Twitter @TripleCrownCorp.