16 S AC S TAT E M AGA Z I N E | Fa l l 2 014
Ethan Conrad '89 (Business Administration)
CEO, Ethan Conrad Properties, a commercial real estate
FIRST JOB: As a 7-year-old, his parents paid him 75¢ an hour
to cut thistles
Ethan Conrad attributes his good work ethic—one that has him
putting in 80-hour weeks—to his parents. But it was his time as a
car salesman during his college days that built his love of business.
"It was a phenomenal sales experience," he says. "I learned how
to read people. I learned that the best salespeople are just really
helpful people. You want the salesperson to figure out what you
want and show it to you."
He says that eventually led him to the world of commercial real
"When I became a broker it was the same thought process—
helping people find what they want," Conrad says. "If the
salespeople are helpful, they are the most successful."
And that zest for selling put him at the helm of his own
"I love business," he says. "It's
fun, especially commercial real
estate because it's like playing
Monopoly but it's 3-D and it's
"And it's always changing so
there are different opportunities
at different times. Windows close but that's what I like, being in
tune with the market so when there's buzz, you can seize that
opportunity and make the most of it."
Conrad didn't always have real estate on the brain. In fact, he
originally planned to become an attorney but after six years of
trying different paths during his Sac State days, it was an internship
with a brokerage firm that got him pointed in the right direction.
His advice to future Sac State students: "Figure out what you
want to do early on so you only do it once and so that the degree
is of value."
And then take advantage of internship offerings.
"With internships, you're working in the real world. It's a great
way to figure out if that's what you want to do," he says. "Talk to
people in the industry and immerse yourself."
"Talk to people in
the industry and