The Sembler Co. Founder Mel Sembler Dies at 93

by Hayden Spiess

St. Petersburg, Fla. — Florida-based developer and founder of The Sembler Co. Mel Sembler has passed away at the age of 93, according to a statement from the company. 

Sembler founded his eponymous real estate company in 1962. To date, it has completed more than 350 developments totaling 29 million square feet. Additionally, the company manages and leases 10 million square feet of real estate and has offices in St. Petersburg, Florida, Atlanta and Puerto Rico. Currently, The Sembler Co.’s portfolio includes Belmont Shopping Center in Ruskin, Florida, and North Macon Plaza in Macon, Georgia. Sembler is also underway on the development of The Preserve Marketplace in Odessa, Florida, and West Villages Marketplace in Venice, Florida. In Atlanta, the company developed Town Brookhaven in 2010 and The Prado in 2008. The retail centers total 441,217 and 345,000 square feet, respectively. 

Sembler also previously served as US Ambassador to Australia and Nauru from 1989 to 1993 and to Italy from 2001 to 2005. He also served as chairman for the Republican Party’s national finance committee, according to the American Enterprise Institute. 

Preceded in death by his wife, Betty, Sembler was a father of three, grandfather of 12 and great-grandfather of eight.

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