James A. Schlesinger
During the last two weeks two notable men named James Schlesinger passed away.
One James R. Schlesinger died on March 27 at the age of 85.
He was an economist who served as secretary of defense from 1973 to 1975 under Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. He became America's first secretary of energy under Jimmy Carter.
The other James A. Schlesinger passed away on March 30. Schlesinger was founder of the Schlesinger Companies and Talisman, predecessor to AWE Talisman LLC. He was responsible for forming its outlet division, "Fashion Outlets."
In 1986, James A. Schlesinger turned the old Midway Mall, a 690,000 square foot regional mall in Miami, into the Mall of the Americas, the first Hispanic-oriented mall in the U.S.
Schlesinger formed Talisman in 1994 and continued rebuilding and marketing shopping centers, such as Roswell Town Center, Roswell, Ga.; Knoxville Marketplace, Knoxville, TN; Towson Marketplace, Towson, MA; and Southland Mall, and Miracle Marketplace, Miami, Fla..
In 2000, Schlesinger formed a "Fashion Outlets" division, combining architectural design with marketing programs. The redevelopment and remarketing of Fashion Outlets in Las Vegas and Santa Fe reflects the planning of Schlesinger and the AWE Talisman team.
Locally, Schlesinger's company, AWE Talisman, is best known for the Fashion Outlet Mall on 1900 Military Road in the Town of Niagara. Home to 150 outlets offering up to 75 percent savings on name-brand apparel, the Fashion Outlet Mall features outlets for Coach, Banana Republic, Burberrys, Juicy Couture, Saks Fifth Ave Off 5th, Tommy Hilfiger, Timberland, Michael Kors, Hugo Boss and Nike.
In 2010, AWE Talisman began construction on the first two-story enclosed outlet mall, Fashion Outlets of Chicago, which opened on last August.
Schlesinger was born in Detroit and studied law at Wayne State University where he was graduated from in 1974. He lived with his wife, Pamula, in Coral Gables, Fla..
"He was a great developer, businessman and a great friend, not only my friend, but a friend to all the people of Niagara. Look what he built up here. He believed in this area and in his mall," said Town of Niagara Supervisor Steve Richards.
The Outlet Mall is the single largest generator for sales tax revenue in Niagara County.
His partner at AWE Talisman, Chairman of the Board Arthur Weiner, sent this message: "James A. Schlesinger, my great partner, good friend, great father and grandfather left us this week at the tender age of 65…. He will be missed."