Mr. Waterfield

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Richard D. Waterfield

Richard Dallas (Dick) Waterfield was born in Fort Wayne IN in 1944, the youngest of the three children born to Richard Hobbs and Anne Kendrick McGill Waterfield.


Mr. Waterfield attended South Side High School, graduating in 1962. He went on to earn his Bachelor of Arts degree from Denison University in 1966 and his Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Northwestern University in 1968.


After a stint in the Army Reserve, Mr. Waterfield joined his father, Richard H. and President Joel Bravick at Waterfield Mortgage Company in Fort Wayne. He was enamored with investment property finance and began brokering commercial mortgage loans to the company’s institutional lenders. He also oversaw the company’s SBIC (government-sponsored Small Business Investment Co.) and began to learn the intricacies of the residential mortgage business under Mr. Bravick.


In 1980, Mr. Waterfield became chairman of Waterfield Mortgage Company upon his father’s death. The successful company had been growing rapidly throughout the 1970’s through a series of well-executed acquisitions and the building of an exceptionally talented management team. Mr. Waterfield concentrated on acquisitions, and in particular, “work out” issues from acquired companies. He, working together with Howard Chapman, the company’s counsel, also facilitated seamless shareholder continuity during this period.


Together with Jerry Von Deylen (formerly CFO of First Federal of Fort Wayne), he engineered the acquisition of several thrift institutions in the 1980s that materially assisted the company’s rapid growth as interest rates declined and loan production exploded during that decade. Upon the retirement of Joel Bravick in 1987, Mr. Waterfield facilitated the transition to Donald Sherman becoming President, and together with Mr. Von Deylen, they ran the Waterfield Group for many years thereafter.


In 1999, Richard decided to reduce his family’s risk by allowing a restructuring of the company. Earlier restructurings of the Waterfield Group and a recapitalization of Waterfield Mortgage in that year put majority control into the hands of senior managers and outside investors.


As Mr. Waterfield had gradually stepped back from daily corporate duties, he stepped further into civic activities. As his father before him, Richard has supported and volunteered for many community organizations. He founded the predecessor to the Downtown Improvement District and was one of the founders of the Community Development Corporation and the Fort Wayne Sports Corporation. He served as President of the Canterbury School Foundation for nine years and has long been Chair of the school and foundation Joint Investment Committee.


Mr. Waterfield has been Chairman of his family’s foundation since its beginning in 1992.  He is a director of the Fort Wayne Parks Foundation and a former member of the Board of Governors of the Riley Children’s Foundation in Indianapolis where he serves on the Finance Committee.  In 2015 he was recognized as a Riley Children’s Foundation Life Governor for his investments in Hoosier families that have resulted in better lives for thousands.


Appreciating the importance of a healthy central business district to any city, Mr. Waterfield has been very active in efforts to revitalize downtown Fort Wayne. In 1983, working with Mayor Win Moses and the Fort Wayne Convention Authority, he formed a group to own and leaseback the new Grand Wayne Center, a major development in the recovery process for downtown Fort Wayne. He also led the restoration of the Barr Street Market Building and the renovation of the long vacant L.S. Ayres Building, which became Renaissance Square (and now called Citizens Square). He was also instrumental in making possible the Courthouse Green, a major “green” improvement for downtown, east of the Allen County Courthouse.


Mr. Waterfield and his family have been generous supporters of local education, funding scholarships to Canterbury School and Indiana-Purdue University, Fort Wayne. His family’s financial support of the building of the IPFW student housing complex, built on what is now known as the Waterfield Campus, has helped IPFW make a major shift from an entirely commuter campus to a partially residential one.


In June 2005, Purdue University honored Richard with an honorary doctorate in Management. In recognizing Richard’s reception of the award, Paul Helmke, former mayor of Fort Wayne said: “Dick has put his time, his money, and his organizational efforts behind making the Fort Wayne business community, the quality of life in Fort Wayne, and IPFW better and stronger.”


Mr. Waterfield has been a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) and is now a lifetime member of World Presidents Organization (WPO) and Chief Executives Organization (CEO). He has three children and nine grandchildren.


Waterfield Capital, LLC