Specialty: Corporate real estate management
Recent Deals: As president of the Los Angeles Airport Commission, working on the master plan for expanding LAX.
The event most responsible for shaping Dan Garcia occurred 30 years ago and almost halfway around the globe. Garcia was a platoon sergeant in a rifle company during the Vietnam War, spending two and a half years in jungles and suffering several near-fatal wounds.
“The war affected me in every way,” said Garcia. “It made me realize that one person could make a difference in the world and it drove me to do more than just earn a living.”
Garcia is senior vice president of real estate planning and public affairs at Warner Bros., a post that involves overseeing all of the entertainment company’s real estate acquisitions, developments and leases. This includes major transactions around the world with an emphasis these days on Sydney, Hong Kong, Tokyo and London, where Warner Bros. offices are being consolidated or additional space is being sought.
But those responsibilities fall far short of Garcia’s full load. He has always gone beyond “earning a living” and has put in time working for city government, including holding positions under previous and current L.A. mayoral administrations. Positions have included president of both the L.A. city planning and police commissions and a member of the board of directors of Rebuild L.A.
Garcia currently serves as president of the Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners, which has him at the center of LAX’s expansion efforts. Garcia describes working on the master plan as “fascinating and hard,” made particularly complicated given that its 3,500 acres is sandwiched between two residential communities, an industrial sector, sand dunes and the ocean.
Garcia’s dedication to L.A. stems from his own roots. He was born and raised in Echo Park and attended Loyola University, where he got a degree in business administration.
After returning from Vietnam, Garcia earned an MBA from USC and a law degree from UCLA School of Law. Garcia then worked as an attorney at Munger Tolles & Olson for 17 years before being asked by Warner Bros. to head up its corporate real estate department.
Lisa Steen Proctor