Member Spotlight on Blake McGehee

Member Spotlight on BLAKE McGEHEE
Owner of McGehee Properties LLC
Interview conducted by Winnie Hart, Communications Director

Please tell us briefly about your company.
My company is involved in the development, acquisition and management of various income-producing properties such as nursing homes, office buildings, retail centers and warehouses.

Why did you join EO and how long have you been a member?
I've been a member for one year. It was recommended to me by a current EO member.

How did you come up with an original idea for your business?
My father dabbled in real estate while he was a local attorney, and we worked together before he passed away in 1996.

What do you like best about your business?
I like the flexibility of being self-employed.

How much money did you have to invest to start your business?
$100,000. I used it to buy 10 mobile homes to rent in 1988.

What are your current annual revenues and number of employees?
My business income from real estate investments is approximately $500,000 per year.

What is your proudest accomplishment to date in your business?
A retail center I developed on Corporate Blvd. in Baton Rouge.

When did you first realize you were going to be an entrepreneur?
When I decided not to go to law school in 1987.

What do you feel is the greatest accomplishment in your entire life?
Being able to provide a good quality of life for my family.

What are your greatest personal strengths?
I think my greatest strength is that I'm a fair person. I try to be fair in all of my business practices.

What about your weakness?
Not being able to pass up a deal when it may not be the best time.

Why do you think you have been successful?
I had a good teacher (my dad) and I think I've been lucky.

What is something that most people don't know about you?
I'm very active with a local non-profit that helps folks with addiction recovery.

What is something you hope will be written about you in your obituary?
That I always did the right thing and never gave up on a deal when times got tough.

On a lighter note, what do you do for fun these days?
I like to hunt, fish and spend time with my three children.
Got anything big coming up on the horizon for you personally or with business that you want to share?
My first attempt at developing apartments - 260 units in Zachary, LA. The project has been quite a bear and it's almost finished.

Who has the biggest influence on your life?
My father.

What are the most influential books that you have read?
Part of a book actually - the 'sermon on the mount.'

If you could spend an entire day with one person, who would it be?
Jamie Dimon, the CEO of J.P. Morgan financial services.

What advice would you give to young entrepreneurs?
I would say, be fair and starve before you miss a bank payment. If you ever lose the ability to borrow money, it's over.

How long has your company been in operation?
For nineteen years.

What has been the best thing about being a member of EO New Orleans?  
The relationships I've made, the forum, the sharing of thoughts, ideas and concerns.

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