You don't think of Orange County, California as being a rural area, but it was in July of 1964 when F.M. "Bruce" Brusseau moved his family of five children from Fargo, North Dakota to Newport Beach. At the time, he was the top sales rep for IBM when he accepted an offer to be the new sales manager at the newly opened Anaheim and Long Beach office. "My dad dreamed of living near the beach in California and away from the extremely hard farm life he grew up with," said Scott Brusseau ('82, finance/real estate).
Within the decade, Bruce Brusseau left IBM to embark on another passion that would eventually become the family business – commercial real estate. He founded Newport National in 1973 and incorporated the business in 1975.
Since his father has always been a mentor to him, Scott decided to follow him into the commercial real estate business. He chose to pursue a degree in real estate from San Diego State because "SDSU had a great real estate program within the finance department at the business school," said Scott. "Graduating from SDSU was important to me since I wanted to live and work in San Diego so I wanted to start building relationships with other future leaders at SDSU."
Scott joined Newport National Corporation in 1984 and he became president of the company in 1990 when his father stepped down from actively managing the company due to health issues.
In 1986, Scott moved the company to Carlsbad, California. After restructuring itself through an Umbrella Partnership Real Estate Investment Trust transaction with Prentiss Properties Trust in 1998, the principles were able to reignite Newport National to focus exclusively on the local market once again.
Today, Scott still heads Newport National Corporation with his brother, Jeff Brusseau, who serves as the company's senior vice president. The company specializes in the acquisition, development and management of commercial property in Southern California. At this writing, they have developed more than five million square feet of property and retain approximately 700,000 feet in their portfolio.
Scott's advice to today's SDSU real estate students is get involved in the industry early and learn as much about the industry as possible. "Wise is the man who learns from his experiences," he said, "but wiser yet is the man that learns from the experiences of others." However, the most important thing to being successful, said Scott, is "just being nice. It is nice to be important, but it is more important to be nice."
"Graduating from SDSU was important to me since I wanted to live and work in San Diego so I wanted to start building relationships with other future leaders at SDSU."
"Wise is the man who learns from his experiences, but wiser yet is the man that learns from the experiences of others."