The Durst Family: Real Estate Development & New York’s West Side
Douglas Durst, a third-generation Durst family member, assumed the role of president of The Durst Organization in 1992. Douglas was born in New York City in 1944. He graduated from the Fieldston School in 1962 and the University of California at Berkeley in 1966. Returning to New York in 1967, he married Susanne, with whom he has three children: Anita, Alexander, and Helena. After two years of study at the Urban Studies Program at New York University, he joined The Durst Organization, learning the business from his father, Seymour, and two uncles, Roy and David.
Douglas is a director of the Real Estate Board of New York, The Graduate Center of City University Foundation, The New School, The Trust for Public Land, and Project for Public Spaces. He is also the co-chair of Friends of the Hudson River Park. Douglas has been involved with the theatrical arts for many years and is a member of the board of directors of The Roundabout Theater, Primary Stages, and The Town Hall. Along with other family members, he is a trustee of The Old York Foundation, established by his father, which is committed to helping people through education to understand the history and issues facing New York City. In 1999, they donated his father’s vast collection of books and materials to The Graduate Center of the City of New York. In addition, Douglas has been an environmental activist for many years and created the largest organic farm in New York State.