Craig Sher

Founder & Chairman

Craig Sher is a well-respected business leader, with more than 40 years of experience running and advising successful companies and providing leadership to large and small non-profit organizations.  In recent years, Craig has shifted his focus to investments made through his family-run Backstreets Capital as well as providing leadership to other independent businesses.

Craig retired in 2019 as Executive Chairman of the well-known real estate group, The Sembler Company where he worked for 35 years.  While real estate has been central to Craig’s success and professional pursuits, he is passionate about the importance of effective leadership and committed to applying his decades of experience to support professional and practical discussion of board management, governance and operations with a focus on family-operated and owned businesses.

 His current corporate board affiliations include:

  • Kaiserman Company, Philadelphia, PA – Board Member
  • Sabal Trust Company, St. Petersburg, FL – Board Member, Co-Founder
  • The High Company, Lancaster, PA – Board Member

During Craig’s tenure at Sembler, the company grew to be one of the most recognized shopping center development and management firms in the country, the largest retail developer in Atlanta, and one of the largest developers for Publix and Target in the United States. Sembler became widely regarded as an imaginative and innovative leader in the shopping center industry.

Sher was recognized by the award-winning Tampa Bay Times (formerly the St. Petersburg Times) as one of the Tampa Bay area’s Top 10 business leaders (2005) and was named “Business Executive of the Year” by the Tampa Bay Business Journal in 2006.  In 2011, Sher was inducted into the Tampa Bay Business Hall of Fame by the Florida Council on Economic Education.

Craig’s professional life has always worked in tandem his civic commitments.  Sher is a prominent Tampa Bay figure who is well known for his philanthropic pursuits. Along with his wife and family, the Sher’s long history of selfless community involvement, commitment and volunteerism has had a tremendous impact in Tampa Bay.

Local Non-profit Board Leadership:

  • James Museum, St. Petersburg, FL – Board Member
  • Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital – Board Member
  • Pinellas County Education Foundation, St. Petersburg, FL – Executive Committee, Past Chair, Board Member
  • Starting Right Now, St. Petersburg, FL – Board Member
  • Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation, St. Petersburg, FL – Board Member

Civic Recognition:

  • Lightning Community Hero award by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation (2018)
  • 10th Annual “Celebrity Celebration” award from Gulf Coast Jewish Family Services (2004)
  • Distinguished Citizens Award from West Central Florida Council Boy Scouts of America (2003)
  • “Tree of Life” award for Humanitarian Efforts in the Community from the Jewish National Fund (2001)
  • Silver Medallion Humanitarian award from The National Conference for Community and Justice (2000)