By Mary Thurwachter
When it comes to charitable giving, Anuj Grover says he and Mark Corlew, his partner at real estate investment management group Grover Corlew, like to focus on the future.
Before school began, their employees and tenants of the company’s buildings came together to donate backpacks, folders, notebooks, pencils, art supplies and more, to ensure that students in need returned to school prepared for learning.
Palm Beach and Broward counties’ Title I school students and teachers benefited from the donations, which were available through the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County and the Broward Education Foundation.
“Both my business partner and I are products of the Florida public school system and big believers in the public school system,” Grover said. “Back-to-school drives are directly in our wheelhouse for charitable giving. We’ve been doing this for over five years in Broward County and have expanded to include Palm Beach County,” two years ago when the company moved its headquarters to Boca Raton.
According to the national nonprofit Kids in Need Foundation, 90% of teachers surveyed said that three quarters of their students arrived to class without the supplies necessary for learning.
The pandemic drastically increased the need for basic school supplies for students in Title I schools, and the school supply centers in both counties are also reporting low levels of donations this year.
“As a father, I know just how expensive it can be to adequately prepare a child for learning each year,” Grover said. “Teachers also spend money to buy supplies for their classrooms. We hope to ease the burden with these donations, particularly for those struggling to get by. Every little bit helps.”
Other charities to which the firm contributes include Florence Fuller Child Development Centers in Boca Raton, the Pompano Beach Elementary School art program, the Boys and Girls Clubs, and Channing Crowder toy drive.
Grover, who lives in Boca Raton, grew up in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area and has a law degree from Vanderbilt University and a bachelor of science degree in accounting from the University of Florida.
For more than 20 years, he has been acquiring and developing real estate. It’s in his DNA. Some of his fondest childhood memories are sitting on his dad’s lap learning about investing, he said.
“He was the quintessential immigrant at that time, always saving money. But he was also smart and invested his savings in stocks, land and even an office condo,” Grover said.
When his father was 17, he came to the U.S. from India on a monthlong boat ride and studied at the University of Michigan.
Grover said: “Like a lot of immigrant stories, it’s very similar. Hard to get here. Don’t have a safety net. A lot of hard work. And usually, the investment spent for all your time is for your family.
“My brother and I were beneficiaries of that. It ends up shaping who you are and how you think.”
Grover began his career in Atlanta as a certified public accountant in the Entrepreneurial Services Group of Ernst & Young and later worked as an attorney in the international law firm King & Spalding.
In the 1990s, he transitioned to the investment world, where he held positions at several venture-backed companies.
He and Corlew have been developing their business partnership for more than two decades. Grover Corlew has amassed more than 2.5 million square feet of office, medical office and retail properties, along with thousands of multifamily units, with a combined value of $750 million.
Grover, 51, and his wife, Meghna, have two children, a daughter Simi, 13, and son Sachin, 11.
Asked what he likes to do when he’s not working, Grover focused on people: “Anything that is spending time with family or longtime friends is always at the center of what I like to do for fun — watching a game, grabbing a meal, having drinks, cheering on the kids — whether it’s lacrosse, boxing, soccer, whatever they’re playing — going for a hike or wrestling with our dog.
“At the end of the day, I’m a fairly social creature by nature. Spending time with people that I like, love or care about and having some good laughs is really what I enjoy.”
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