Chris Bright and his brother Clay run Bright Realty, founded by their father, H.R. “Bum” Bright, former owner of the Dallas Cowboys. The company focuses on masterplan development, homebuilding, real estate marketing, golf operations, financial services, and hospitality. Its landmark project is the 2,900-acre mixed use Castle Hills.
EDUCATION: University of Dallas (BA)
FIRST JOB: “At 14, I was a landscaper for the Town of Highland Park. I made $1.32 per hour. My dad wanted me to learn the value of hard work. To this day, I have an appreciation of the crews that work on our sites that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.”
WHO I ADMIRE:“The most influential person in my life was my father, Bum (H.R.) Bright. He taught my brother and me nearly everything we know about business along with the importance of ethics and giving back to the community.”
BIGGEST SUCCESS: “We’ve expanded the commercial arm of our development business with a 324-acre master-planned community, The Realm at Castle Hills, on our family’s former ranch.”
TOUGHEST CHALLENGE: “Working through the debt incurred by myself and my brother when we bought our sisters’ shares of the business through the 2008 downturn.”
LESSON LEARNED: “You cannot always out think people, but you can always out work them. Drive and passion always win out at the end of the day.”
WHAT KEEPS ME UP AT NIGHT: “Not much. I’ve always believed worry is unnecessary and time is better spent on thinking about solutions.”
FUN FACT: “I like toys like water guns, remote control cars, and yo-yos. Every year, I buy my kids (now in their 30s) and grandkids toy guns for Christmas, and we have shootout contests.”
ADVICE TO AN 18-YEAR-OLD ME: “You do not know as much as you think you do.”
WHO’D PLAY ME IN BIOPIC: “Robert Redford”
CAR I DRIVE: “Aston Martin. I’ve always owned fast cars.”
BEVERAGE OF CHOICE: “Dr Pepper”
HOBBIES: “Golf and reading”
BUCKET LIST: “Seeing the Seven Wonders of the World and very historical edifices.”
An abbreviated version of this Q&A appeared in the 2019 Dallas 500, a special publication produced by D CEO that profiles the region’s most influential executives.