Partner and principal, RiverWest Partners
About: Brian Suiter has spent 20 years in real estate, holding principal or management roles in over $1 billion in nationwide mixed-use and retail development projects, most recently with Kaufman Development. Brian recently co-founded RiverWest Development, which is focused on building projects that positively impact communities and investors.
We need to align and harness The Columbus Way around eliminating social divides and have a very honest conversation about why our community is widely considered a segregated city.
Outside of work: Suiter co-founded arts nonprofit Catalyst Columbus and founded The Next Partnership, a social organization for real estate professionals. He also serves as trustee for the North Market Development Authority; board member for Lutheran Social Services of Central Ohio; Central Ohio district club president for alma mater Colgate University; 8-year “High Roller” in Pelotonia; and as a member of The Contemporaries at the Columbus Museum of Art.
What does Columbus need to thrive? With a personal mantra of “building community,” I consider this daily. Revising the city’s zoning code to allow for more density and transit-oriented development is a good start. However, we have to address smart transportation faster or Columbus’ population growth will stagnate.
We also need to align and harness “The Columbus Way” around eliminating social divides and have a very honest conversation about why our community is widely considered a segregated city. Striving for the smart development of mixed income, cross-generational and multicultural communities will only make us stronger.
Suiter’s idea: Catalyst Columbus debuted a 10,000-square-foot text mural on an abandoned bridge downtown earlier this year. “We Are Stronger Together” was painted in bright, bold letters as a testament to our community’s resolve in the wake of Covid. The incredible response was proof that our community is aching for more large-scale mural art to create wonderment and conversation. I propose the Future 50 identify a nationally recognized artist with a diverse background, fundraise and gain approvals for a large mural downtown. The artist could host sessions with local artists, convene community discussions about race and art, and celebrate the painting’s completion with a community block party.