Despite being in the real estate business these days, Russell Gimelstob originally had a much different calling in life. When he was six, he obtained his first racket and quickly learned how to play tennis as he practiced on a daily basis. This practice paid off when he was named team captain at Newark Academy when he was just a sophomore, the first one ever to do so. After making first team all state, he then spent most of the off-season training under Robert Lansdorp, one of the greatest tennis coaches in the nation. He has taught such a-listers as Maria Sharapova and Pete Sampras. He went on to win three state championships in a row with his high school team before graduating and enrolling at Cornell University.
This is where he played varsity tennis under Barry Shoemaker, the head coach who pushed him to always do his best. This drive led him to be chosen for the national doubles tournament where he represented the university and won. He also became an academic all American and was appointed the new team captain when he was a senior. Additionally, he went an entire season without losing one single match but eventually he had to graduate in the spring of 2002. After receiving his master’s degree, he decided to take a job working as a financial analyst for Goldman Sachs. He stayed with the company for three years before deciding to accept an offer from Dune Real Estate Group.
He started out as an associate and worked hard for seven years before eventually being promoted to partner. A few years later, he went on to become their managing director and head of acquisitions. He also serves as a member of their investment committee and he just recently was named an annual honoree by the Hebrew Academy for Special Children. A few years ago, he returned to high school so he could be inducted into their athletic hall of fame and his banner still hangs there to this day. He’s also a member of the board at UC Berkeley’s School of Business.