“Engineered serendipity,” Jeff Medici says with a grin, “I don’t believe in luck.” It’s a saying Jeff has adopted as a sort of mantra after the phrase was coined by a friend during a discussion about capitalizing on opportunities. The meaning, Jeff explains, is that much of what people attribute to luck has more to do with being diligent and putting yourself in a position to succeed than it does to chance. It’s efficiency, hard work, and paying attention to details, so when that “lucky break” comes it amplifies success as opposed to creating it in itself. Jeff’s military background taught him the importance of commitment, integrity, loyalty, and attention to detail. After completion of the ROTC program at Clemson University, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force, serving 6 years with assignments in Texas, Nevada, and The Pentagon. As Chief of Current Operations for one of the Air Force’s first information warfare squadrons, Jeff oversaw training exercises for the USAF Weapons School preparing the top pilots how to fly, fight, and win in a hostile electronic combat environment. “When it is literally life or death, every detail matters. You simply couldn’t afford to make a mistake,” Jeff says. After his honorable discharge from the military in December 1999, Jeff’s experience in electronic security enabled him to start a successful career working for some of the world’s largest accounting and investment firms. Although by every metric his career was a success, he just wasn’t passionate about his daily work life. And if there’s anything the Medici family knows well, it’s passion.
At various times from the 1500s to 1800s, the Medici family in Florence, Italy was the wealthiest family in the world and also one of the most influential. In fact, the Medici family line includes four Popes, two queens of France, as well as the hereditary titles of Duke of Florence the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. But one of their most lasting and important legacies is the passion they had for art, finance, and construction. The Medici family has funded some of the most amazing buildings and works of art the world has ever seen, such as most of Michaelangelo’s works (including the Sistine Chapel and his David sculpture) as well as the construction of the Basilica of San Lorenzo and the Duomo in Florence. Whether due to his family’s history or just the way he was wired at birth, Jeff has always had a passion for building Legos, often creating large and complex builds that exceed most people’s abilities, and patience. It was this passion for building that led Jeff to approach his wife on December 28, 2011 with a proposition to resign from his successful job and start a career as a real estate developer, a discipline in which he had no experience at the time. With the trust and support that only the strongest of marriages can provide, Medici Development Partners, LLC was founded in 2012. Jeff purchased 17 acres on the north side of State Highway 114, coordinating with the City of Southlake for the design and construction of the Kimball Park development. This massive undertaking includes The Offices at Kimball Park, a four-story, Class A office complex; the 175-room Cambria Hotel; and the over 101,000 square foot, mixed-use complex known as District 114 at Kimball Park. Even more impressive is that before Jeff finalizes the design for any of his structures, he first builds them entirely out of Legos. As quirky as it sounds, the purpose isn’t just to satisfy his hobby. Constructing them out of Legos provides an opportunity to truly understand the design and functionality of each building, helping to ensure any necessary changes are made before a single shovel penetrates the dirt. “In my first days as a real estate developer, I used to skew towards the “form” and beauty of a building. I finally realized that while the appearance of a building is important, it really doesn’t matter how good it looks if it’s not functional for the tenants and guests,” Jeff explains. Jeff’s latest Lego masterpiece took four months to build using nearly 20,000 individual Lego pieces and is proudly displayed in the lobby of District 114 at Kimball Park.
And while office buildings and hotels are common to the DFW landscape, there is one of Jeff’s projects that is hard to overlook. Leave it to a Medici family member to design and create “Fury” the dragon, an eight ton, twenty-eight foot tall, stainless steel dragon with the largest wingspan of its type in the world. Catching the eye of thousands of motorists passing by on Highway 114, Fury is the mascot for Jeff’s latest business venture, Fury Athletix. Growing up as a sport enthusiast, Jeff played baseball, golf, and just about every other sport he could as a child. In fact, it was his golfing abilities that led Jeff to Clemson University after being recruited to the school’s golf team. After searching for a better hat while playing a variety of different sports, Jeff recognized a gap in the athletic headwear market. While most athletic apparel companies have hats and headwear, they aren’t the focus, and typically are made by a third-party that simply affixes that apparel provider's logo on the hat. They aren’t created or designed for a specific sport and the unique performance required for that activity. Jeff explains, “Our hats are specifically designed for each type of athletic activity, such as running, golf, tennis, biking, hunting, and HIIT exercises. All Fury hats are made with the highest quality materials with the attention to detail necessary to deliver the highest performing headwear in the world. With a variety of different styles, sizes, fits, and fabric, each hat is designed with the input of world-class athletes for each sport.”