Founder and CEO
Rick J. Caruso is a renowned business innovator, dedicated civic leader and actively involved philanthropist. As its founder and Chief Executive Officer, he has developed Caruso® to be one of the largest and most admired privately held real estate companies in the United States.
Under Rick Caruso’s leadership, the company has achieved a compounded annual growth rate of nearly 20% since its inception.
Caruso started his career as a real-estate lawyer in the corporate finance department of one of the nation’s largest law firms. Thereafter, he transitioned from law to pursue his lifelong passion for development, establishing Caruso Affiliated Holdings in 1987. Ignoring the traditional “shopping mall” approach to retail, he adopted a fresh, new strategy for development and revolutionized the industry with imaginative retail and mixed-use destinations that serve as timeless and beloved centers of town.
Caruso’s world-class portfolio of properties continues to expand and include more than a dozen internationally renowned and award-winning retail, residential, mixed-use, and resort destinations. Among these are the recently opened Palisades Village and Rosewood Miramar Beach Montecito.
At a Glance
3X HIGHERthan industry averagecaruso’s properties consistently outperform traditional shopping destinations with results three times higher than the industry average.
TOP 5IN SALES ON FORTUNECaruso’s flagship property, The grove, was ranked second highest sales-generating shopping centers in the country.
TOP 15ranking on shopping center todaycaruso is the only development company to have two of its properties ranked on Shopping Center Today’s list of the top 15 shopping centers in the world.
Caruso’s deeply held personal philosophy and commitment to giving back have further solidified his reputation as a compassionate member of the community. In 1991, he and his wife, Tina, founded The Caruso Family Foundation. The foundation is dedicated to supporting children living in areas of high crime and extreme poverty through educational opportunities. Through faith-based universities of the highest academic excellence, environmental awareness, and quality healthcare programs for disadvantaged communities – The Caruso Family Foundation works with the most disenfranchised youth within the Los Angeles community to change their life’s trajectory.
Among the many non-profit organizations that he supports, Caruso is actively involved with Operation Progress LA, St. Lawrence of Brindisi School, St. Mary’s Academy and Verbum Dei High School—all located in the Watts area of Los Angeles—as well as Para Los Niños, which serves at-risk families in downtown Los Angeles.
In 2019, Caruso announced a $50 million commitment to the Pepperdine School of Law, which will be renamed the Rick J. Caruso School of Law in recognition of the historic gift. The contribution, made through the Caruso Family Foundation, will expand educational access to exceptional, historically underserved student populations—a hallmark of the Caruso family’s philanthropic efforts in the Los Angeles area and beyond—as well as fuel several initiatives to strengthen the School of Law’s academic programming.
Awards & recognition
TRUE BLUE AWARDLOS ANGELES POLICE FOUNDATION
For positive change through philanthropic, business and civic leadership.
Commander in the order of St. Gregory the GreatPOPE FRANCIS
For service and generosity to so many in need.
Asa v. call awardUSC
The most distinguished alumni honor at USC.