Following the lead of Cushman & Wakefield’s Paul Massey and developer Don Peebles, another real estate executive is weighing a challenge to Mayor Bill de Blasio in 2017.
Former PropertyShark CEO Bill Staniford – who in 2010 was linked to Russian spy Anna Chapman – has been meeting with political consultants and Republican leaders as he weighs a mayoral run, according to Crain’s.
The 46-year-old cited problems such as the mayor’s strained relationship with the NYPD and the city’s increasing homeless and crumbling infrastructure among the reasons he’s considering a bid.
“I have served as the CEO of four different startups, and I believe entrepreneurship is the type of experience needed to run government,” he said.
A cousin to former City Council Speaker Gifford Miller, Staniford served as a U.S. Marine breaking codes as a cryptologist. In 2010, he was linked to Chapman, who posed as a real estate executive before being busted by the FBI. Staniford later said Chapman and another operative targeted him, and that he was fully exonerated by the FBI.
Staniford left PropertyShark in 2010 after it was scooped up by Santa Barbara, California-based Yardi Systems.
He’s now CEO of Urbint.com, a New York City real estate data company, and Modellauncher.com, a cosmetics and modeling site. But he said his track record with data startups would boost the city’s efficiency. “When I worked at PropertyShark, we used to aggregate the city’s data and sell it back to them,” he said. [Crain’s] – E.B. Solomont