ICSC: International Council of Shopping Centers

Historical Timeline

March 15, 1957: Seven men -- Albert Lowery, Robert Peters, Howard Senor, Clyde Brown, Michael Lewis, James Osberg and Harold Spurway -- meet in Chicago's Palmer House to discuss forming a shopping center trade association. Each man contributes $500. The International Council of Shopping Centers is incorporated in Illinois. Bylaws established.

May 14, 1957: With Lowery presiding as chairman, 36 members meet again at Palmer House to elect Board of Trustees. Board then elects Leonard L. Farber of New York to be ICSC's first president.

June 17, 1957: At special meeting at the Waldorf Astoria, board approves change of name to International Association of Shopping Centers, agrees to hire executive secretary and to locate headquarters in New York City. Company dues cut from $225 to $150 a year.

June 18, 1957: On the second day of the special meeting, Lowery convinces other board members to change the name of the organization back to the International Council of Shopping Centers.

Jan. 1, 1958: Albert Sussman, former newspaper reporter, editor and PR man, hired as executive secretary, receiving a percentage fee for each new member in lieu of a salary.

Feb. 24-27, 1958: First convention held in Hotel Statler, NYC. Registration is 122, including 70 non-members. Board approves plan for what will become the first ICSC Institute at the University of Connecticut in October.

1959:Position of state director created. ICSC publishes Merchants Association Manual and Recommended Lease Form.

1960: Jack H. Pearlstone Jr. succeeds Farber as president. Farber named lifetime trustee. First Promotion Conference held in October. California members hold local "Idea Exchange."

1961: Board approves controversial new merchant membership classification, allowing retailers to join ICSC. First membership directory published.
 

1962: Convention in Dallas includes trade show run by Chain Store Age magazine.

1963: Board approves designation for Certified Shopping Center Managers (CSM). First convention in Canada held in Montreal. Trustee Ralph Biernbaum chairs first University of Shopping Centers at convention. Membership tops 1,000.

1964: ICSC and the Urban Land Institute agree to undertake major parking lot study to determine a standard ratio of parking spaces to gross leasable area. Research Foundation formed.

1965: Convention trade show, now run by ICSC, sells out all 63 booths. Parking Requirements for Shopping Centers published.

1966: ICSC Leasing Directory first appears in pamphlet form. Full-time research director hired.

1967: Membership tops 2,000. Attendance at convention in Miami nears 3,000.

1968: Five-year plan recommends establishment of local luncheons organized by state directors.

1969: Newly formed Urban Affairs Committee works to assist entrepreneurs in the black community. Urban Affairs director hired on staff.

1970: Winston & Strawn, ICSC legal counsel, opens Washington office to act as ICSC liaison with Congress.

1971: First Law Conference held. New, separate format for University of Shopping Centers. Accredited Shopping Center Promotion Director (ASPD) designation created.

1972: Retailers and lending institutions granted Class A, voting membership. ICSC expands program to 35 Idea Exchanges. Attendance up 59%. MAXI Awards established to honor marketing excellence. Supreme Court rules that First Amendment does not give protesters the right to distribute leaflets in a privately owned mall. Company dues increased from $200 to $250 per year.

1973: Depreciable Life of Shopping Centers published by ICSC and sent to IRS. Membership tops 5,000.

1974: Recession, inflation and a special assessment for environmental action leads to 7% drop in membership -- first net loss of members in ICSC history.

1975: Membership drive undertaken as income continues to decline. Under the leadership of Jean-Louis Solal of France, European members form the European Affairs Committee of ICSC, a federation of independent national councils. In May, board stipulates that ICSC should not establish formal state chapters.

1976: First ICSC European Conference held in Paris. Membership up again, nears 5,500. Convention held in Las Vegas for first time. Record attendance of nearly 6,000 registrants. U.S. President Gerald Ford delivers keynote address.

1977: ICSC moves headquarters from 445 Park Avenue to Rolex Building, 665 Fifth Avenue in New York. New York Times advertising supplement celebrates 20th anniversary.

1978: Largest one-year membership gain to date (19%) brings total to 7,400. Federal Trade Commission, after long study, agrees that regulating the shopping center industry is unnecessary. Monthly newsletter converted to magazine called ICSC Today. New ICSC logo appears. Fall Promotion Conference is renamed Marketing Conference.

1979: ICSC Today is renamed Shopping Centers Today. Convention held in Toronto.

1980: Membership tops 10,000 in 35 countries. Separate deal-making weekend precedes University of Shopping Centers in January in San Francisco. Landmark Pruneyard ruling by Supreme Court forces California malls to allow political leafleting in common area. The Court ruled that the California state constitution granted greater free speech rights than U.S. Constitution. First Financing & Accounting Conference held.

1981: First Canadian Conference held. Legal Update published. ASPD changed to Certified Marketing Director (CMD). National Management Conference takes place. Dues raised from $250 to $400, first increase since 1972.

1982: New Leasing Mall concept at 25th Spring Convention consolidates deal-making activity under one roof at Las Vegas Convention Center. Deal-making weekend at University of Shopping Centers is moved to fall as separate event. ULI Parking Study, funded by ICSC, recommends reduction in index developed in 1965 report. School of Retailing added to University of Shopping Centers. John T. Riordan, a former educator and publishing executive, joins ICSC staff.

1983: In conjunction with HUD, ICSC holds conference on urban retail development. Trustees attend Congressional Contacts meeting in D.C.

1984: Management and marketing meetings combined into one major event, the Fall Conference and Exhibition. Shopping Center Operation Cost Analysis Report (SCOCA) makes its debut.

1985: Fall Conference becomes Fall Convention. Spring Convention in New Orleans attracts nearly 18,000. Since, all Spring Conventions have been held in Las Vegas. Membership increases by 33%, to 15,000, the largest one-year gain to date.

1986: Riordan, who had been serving as ICSC general manager, replaces Sussman, who retires after 28 years. ICSC sponsors KIDS, a national child safety awareness program that aims to fingerprint children in 2,800 shopping centers. Research Quarterly introduced. Convention attendance tops 20,000.

1987: Membership tops 23,000, up 142% since 1982. "Kids Say Know to Drugs," a public service campaign in its second year, involves 2,500 centers in the U.S. and Canada. SCOPE books published for U.S. and Canada, showing impact of shopping centers on the economy. Board creates annual Distinguished Service Awards. After a hiatus of several years, the Design and Construction Conference re-emerges as Centerbuild and the Financing & Accounting Conference is reintroduced as the Financial Management Conference.

1988: First ICSC Temporary Tenants Conference targets the growing cart/kiosk segment. Membership tops 25,000. Political Action Committee (PAC) formed, raising $195,000. Education Foundation formed. KIDS KNOW! program gives information on drug and alcohol abuse to more than 1 million youngsters. Board votes to increase company dues to $500.

1989: ICSC opens Washington office headed by former aide to President Reagan. Canadian members sponsor Kids Sense, a child safety awareness campaign. New series of local meetings introduced.

1990: First World Congress of Shopping Centers held in Hong Kong. Severe credit crunch takes hold, membership drops slightly. Retail Challenge introduced.

1991: School for Professional Development succeeds University of Shopping Centers, one of ICSC's oldest programs. Recession, real estate slump lead to 12% drop in membership. Staff reduced by 30%. SCOCA is expanded and renamed The SCORE -- ICSC's Handbook on Shopping Center Operations, Revenue and Expenses. The Directory of Products and Services introduced.

1992: First Security Conference held. ICSC donates $30,000 to Hurricane Andrew Relief Fund in Florida. Thirty-fifth anniversary celebrated at Spring Convention. European Affairs Committee forms secretariat, names Charles Joye of Geneva as secretary general.

1993: Three-year membership decline ends. ICSC opens Asian office in Singapore. Business begins to recover and ICSC rolls out gift certificate program. Number of local meetings hits 230, up from 50 in 1989. First ICSC/Asia Conference held in October.

1994: Certified Leasing Specialist (CLS) designation created, first new accreditation since 1971. Monthly Mall Merchandise Index released to Wall Street and the media. First Mexico Symposium and first Research Conference held. Library expansion completed. ICSC hires full-time director of international programs.

1995: ICSC On-line introduced at Spring Convention. First Entertainment Conference held in Universal City, Calif. First Caribbean Conference held. The title of ICSC president, a rotating member position, is changed to chairman. All Past Presidents become Past Chairmen. Executive VP Riordan is named president of ICSC, now the highest staff position. In October, membership hits 29,810 -- an all-time high. Research library is named for Albert Sussman after he donates funds for an archive of historical documents on shopping centers.

1996: ICSC completes the acquisition of the businesses and assets of Value Retail News, a publisher and trade show producer serving the factory outlet center business. ICSC Net, a homepage on the Internet's World Wide Web, is introduced at Spring Convention, replacing ICSC On-Line. In May, membership surpasses 32,000. The fall National Deal Making, begun in
1982, is discontinued after a final meeting in Kansas City. SCT Xtra, a weekly fax newsletter, is launched in August.

1997: ICSC celebrates its 40th anniversary. The University of Shopping Centers includes outlet-oriented courses taught by outlet professionals.

1998: In an effort to recognize the role of non-traditional marketing strategies and operational approaches in maintaining and increasing the value of shopping centers, ICSC adds a "Center Productivity" category to the MAXI awards. The new award replaces the "Overall Marketing Campaign" category. Accredited Shopping Center Manager (ASM) and Accredited Marketing Director (AMD) designations are newly created to recognize the international manager and marketing director as professionals in the industry. Monthly national same-store department store sales figures are available again for the first time in over a year, under an agreement between ICSC and six of the nation's largest department stores. The first report is released at ICSC's Spring Convention in Las Vegas.

1999: Michael Kercheval joins ICSC as Executive Vice President. Prior to ICSC, Kercheval served as a senior executive with Lend Lease, the Australia based global real estate company.

2000: ICSC, in conjunction with the Council of Urban Development, present the School of Municipal Economic Development offered at ICSC's University of Shopping Centers. In May, membership surpasses 40,000. ICSC hosts 3rd ICSC International World Congress in conjunction with its annual Spring Convention. ICSC relocates to new office space; Rockefeller Center's McGraw Hill Building on Sixth Avenue. ICSC creates an Office of the President to manage the affairs of the association; includes ICSC President and Chief Executive Officer John Riordan and Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Michael Kercheval.

2001: Spring Convention takes on new format. Convention becomes one-day shorter, the Leasing Mall, Trade Exposition and Educational Sessions run concurrently on Monday and Tuesday and there are new expanded hours of operation for the Leasing Mall. Michael Kercheval named new President and Chief Executive Officer of ICSC during Spring Convention. John Riordan retires as President of ICSC and becomes Vice Chairman. In the wake of the September 11th tragedies in New York City, Washington, D.C., and southwestern Pennsylvania, the nation's malls accept cash donations on behalf of the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. ICSC donates $1 million to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund. ICSC creates Shopping Centers on Alert to provide security related information to members.

2002: ICSC forms a special advisory committee that will promote open-air center development through books, articles, specialty conferences, and educational sessions at ICSC meetings. ICSC's University of Shopping Centers introduces courses on open-air centers. ICSC also hosts first conference specially focused on open-air centers. Greenwich publishing, in affiliation with ICSC, publishes the first-ever book about the history of the shopping center industry - America's Marketplace: The History of Shopping Centers. It is the first book to be sold commercially at Barnes & Noble bookstore.

2003: In May, membership tops 44,000. ICSC launches a new program to focus specifically on the next generation of retail real estate professionals. The program provides retail real estate professionals with less than five years of industry experience a means to get involved and engaged in ICSC. Entitled "Next Generation," the program allows new retail real estate professionals the opportunity to network, exchange ideas and experiences, as well as the opportunity to meet and learn from established, knowledgeable industry professionals. John Riordan, immediate past-president and recent vice-chairman, officially retires from ICSC after 21-years of service. ICSC renames its School for Professional Development to the John T. Riordan School of Professional Development, after him.

2004: ICSC contributes $1 million to establish a fund-raising campaign on behalf of the global shopping center industry to provide cash contributions to organizations that are providing direct relief to the victims of the 2004 South Asia and East Africa tsunami. In addition to the $1 million contribution, ICSC establishes a website, so that shopping center professionals throughout the world can make a donation to a coordinated industry effort.
In October, membership exceeds over 54,000.
Albert Sussman, a legendary figure in the shopping center industry, and former executive vice president of ICSC, passes away in June at the age of 88. He was hired as the association's first employee on January 1, 1958, and continued to lead the organization as executive vice president until his retirement in 1986. During Mr. Sussman's employment, the association grew from 75 members to more than 48,000 in 77 countries.
ICSC's Spring Convention draws a record breaking 36,000 attendees. ICSC and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announce that they are forming a new partnership to promote recycling at the nation's shopping centers. America's Marketplace Recycles! is an effort to promote recycling by shopping center owners, managers and retail merchants and to use shopping centers as vehicles for educating the public on the need to increase our recycling efforts.

2005: ICSC hosts its 2005 Retail Real Estate World Summit in Istanbul, Turkey. This is the only global event dedicated to analyzing the retail property sector in a broader socio-economic context.
ICSC’s Spring Convention draws another record breaking attendance as over 40,000 shopping center professionals attend the convention in May.
Developer Leonard L. Farber, CSM, the International Council of Shopping Centers’ first chairman (1957-1960) and a man so instrumental to its launch that he was dubbed "Founding Farber", passes away in July. He was 89.
As part the shopping center industry’s Hurricane Katrina relief efforts, ICSC presents a check for $1.3 million dollars to the American Red Cross on Tuesday, October 25. The funds, which were raised through ICSC member contributions and matched by ICSC, went to assist the American Red Cross in their ongoing hurricane relief efforts in the Gulf States.

2006: ICSC opens its new Lifelong Learning Center, located in its world headquarters in New York City, by offering its Executive Learning Series, 10 one-day courses taught by distinguished ICSC faculty covering today’s most important subjects in the shopping center industry.

ICSC’s Spring Convention draws another record breaking attendance as over 45,000 shopping center professionals attend the convention in May. President William Jefferson Clinton addresses the convention on Sunday, May 21. ICSC elects John Bucksbaum, CEO of General Growth Properties, Inc. as its 47th chairman. Mr. Bucksbaum is the first chairman with a parent who has also held the position — Matthew Bucksbaum, who founded General Growth Properties, Inc. with his brother Martin, who was ICSC’s chairman from 1992-1993.
ICSC’s Educational Foundation hosts its first Spring Convention benefit dinner, "One Industry, One Cause, One Incredible Night — A private dinner with Jay Leno" at the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas.

ICSC hosts its inaugural Conference on Mixed-Use Development in Hollywood, Florida and partners with the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP), The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International, The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) and The National Multi-Housing Council (NMHC) in November. Over 1,000 individuals attended.

ICSC publishes Dollars & Cents of Shopping Centers/SCORE 2006 through a partnership with the Urban Land Institute (ULI).
ICSC announces for individuals in the development, design and construction fields — Certified Development, Design and Construction Professional (CDP), which is designed to elevate the professional standards in the fields of shopping center development, design and construction.

The ICSC CenterBuild Conference celebrates its 25th Anniversary in December.