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Meet Donny Churchman of Nack Development

Today we’d like to introduce you to Donny Churchman.

Donny, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I grew up watching my mom, grandparents, aunts, and uncles working in the public sector as public servants. My Nana, Katy Nack served on the City Council of Pasadena, CA, eventually becoming the Mayor if the city in 1994.

I started in the industry 18 years ago as a lobbyist for the Building Industry. Many mentors and wonderful people helped shape my outlook on development and working with Cities. George Casey especially poured into me and constantly challenged me to read the market/s and to back up my strategies with data.

In 2016, I decided to start Nack Development and more specifically, focus on the redevelopment of old downtowns.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
As George Casey would say, “Things have a tendency to go bump in the night.” In real estate development challenges arise from delays, entitlements, financing, etc. Having the correct mindset of a “can do” attitude has helped tremendously.

I lived in CA until 2011 and lived through the Great Recession. So many lessons were learned during the economic collapse and prepared me for this role. When others may have a Plan B, I have a Plan B, C, D, and E.

I’ve also partnered with former Major League Baseball Player Torii Hunter on some projects, and the one thing we can appreciate about each other is when we fail we get back up and keep swinging.

As someone who played baseball through college, knowing failure is inevitable and it’s how you respond to failure that builds your business.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Nack Development story. Tell us more about the business.
Nack Development focuses on the redevelopment of old downtowns. There are developers throughout TX who are extremely good at development, and I didn’t want to be just another developer. My goal is to create Legacies by helping old downtowns preserve their history and move forward at the same time.

I’m most proud of being able to move downtown Frisco forward. The City has been waiting for someone to take on the redevelopment of their downtown for 35 years and no person or company has been able to do that until now. The way I’ve been able to do that is through an honest and collaborative approach with the downtown merchants, elected officials, city staff and residents.

My grandfather was the man who sat in the corner and observed. I can still picture him today in his chair just taking it all in. That’s how I look at collaboration. I listen to what everyone has to say and try to incorporate their ideas into my developments.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good. And there is the old saying, “the harder I work the luckier I get.”

I’m not sure luck has played much of a role. The reality is I was prepared for the right opportunity to present itself, and the renaissance of downtown Frisco has been the right opportunity.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Cross Architect, Frisco Style Magazine

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