Newton Burris - Columbus State Community College 50th Anniversary

With 20 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, Newton Burris has created a career where his breadth of experience can benefit others.

Burris has a 17-year career in the real estate business, both as a sales agent and in management. He's currently a branch manager for Coldwell Banker King Thompson, an NRT company and division of Realogy. Burris is responsible for running the overall operations of the office and managing the 30 agents and support staff that make up the Bexley/East office.

Burris also owns Park Place Consultants, a company that advises non-profits and for-profit businesses on operations, business planning, marketing strategy and organization structure.

"I have accumulated a decent property portfolio, but my education is my most valuable asset."

Burris is a 1993 graduate of Columbus State, earning an associate degree in Small Business Management. "Columbus State gave me the foundation I need to succeed in life," Burris says. "The instructors have practical experience in their field, and that brings the real world into the classroom."

Burris took his Columbus State credits to Franklin University, where he earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in business administration.

Prior to his latest management position at Coldwell Banker and starting Park Place Consultants, Burris served as the director of economic development for the State of Ohio. In this role he oversaw a department that invests 12 percent of the state's portfolio - more than $800 million - in special projects. These projects grew Ohio jobs, promoted financial stability, supported the operations of Ohio's farmers and created economic development opportunities.

In 2006 returned to his alma mater and taught Real Estate Principles and Practices for two years, fulfilling a longtime dream of becoming a college level instructor. He also served as a director for the Columbus Board of Realtors, Ohio Association of Realtors and was a member of the Ohio Commission on Personal Finance. Currently Burris is on the board of advisors for the ADD Employment Services and the Expanding Visions Foundation.

Burris says his instructors at Columbus State were influential in his business career. "I have accumulated a decent property portfolio, but my education is my most valuable asset."

Images: A Year in the Life of Columbus State