Dr. David Forster Parker (1934-2017)
David Forster Parker died on July 13th after suffering a stroke in his sleep on the 11th while visiting friends and family while vacationing in Toronto, Canada. Wife, Marilynn, was by his side along with family and friends. He had just enjoyed his 83rd birthday on July 4th attending a big party with friends as was his standard given a birth date that coincided with one of the biggest party days for the entire country.
The Parker Family will be holding two ceremonies to celebrate the life and times of Dr. David Forster Parker to honor both of the places he liked to call home:
- August 19 from 10am-2pm at Casa Marina in Jacksonville Beach
- September 16 from 10am-2pm at the Parker Farm in Warwick, Ontario, Canada
David was born and raised in Sarnia, Ontario as a member of five siblings in a time that is often considered a frugal time. He grew up with a desire to do something different. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Toronto. He went on to earn a Master’s Degree in urban planning from Michigan State University and a Doctoral Degree from the State University of New York at Albany.
Throughout Dr. Parker’s career he became a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, National Association of Home Builders Institute of Residential Marketing and National Council On Seniors Housing, Urban Land Institute Council on Community Development, Southeast Resort Real Estate Council and Jacksonville Mayor’s Commission on Housing. He authored dozens of articles on marketing, planning, budgeting and management.
Throughout his life, David worked diligently on his love of singing from singing in the church choir to becoming the president of Jacksonville’s Big Orange Barbershop Chorus. He started and managed the “Youth Harmony Sing Shop” program to encourage young singers from high school and college to get involved in barbershop singing. He continued this love of singing right up through this year when he was joined by son, Chris, in Valentine’s Day Sing-o-Grams around northeast Florida. He wanted to “Keep the Whole World Singing.” If you want to help in his legacy, please send donations to Harmony Foundation International.
Prior to 1982, David Parker’s career included marketing private housing in the British new city of Milton Keynes; directing planning and initial development of Sadat City in Egypt; president and CEO of development for Audubon New Community outside Buffalo, NY; development of New York State’s planning programming-budgeting system; and in 1959 named “National Builder of the Year” by Canada’s National Builder Magazine.
Charlie Clark and Dr. David F. Parker formed Clark Parker Associates in 1982 and worked on many projects together. They also collaborated on their consumer advocate approach to real estate marketing and sales with the successful release of several marketing and sales manuals, including in 1989, two books published by the Home Builder Press — Marketing New Homes and Selling New Homes — which enjoyed high rates of sales for several years. In 1999, the Home Builder Press published a second edition of Marketing New Homes which continued the individual popularity for many years. Parker authored these three books with Charlie Clark. He also authored and published dozens of articles and books, both nonfiction and fiction under his own name including Beyond the Pyramids, The Magic Number, Live Every Day, Florida Land Grab, The Flagler Legacy and more.
After going their separate ways in 1990, Dr. Parker formed Parker Associates with his sons, Chris and Stephen. Parker Associates has continued to be dedicated to providing Real Estate Development Marketing Consulting to developers and builders both nationally and internationally having assisted those in 17 countries and 33 states as well as in most of the counties in Florida. Over the past four decades, Dr. Parker was responsible for a wide range of management, development and marketing innovations in the real estate industry as corporate executive, planner, teacher, author and consultant. His skills have been applied to projects in Europe, the Middle East, Central America and the Caribbean as well as in many parts of the United States and his native Canada. All received David Parker’s distinctive blend of academic knowledge and development management experience, combined with his focus on consumer characteristics as the key to generating optimum marketing results.
In many ways, Dr. David F. Parker was unheralded throughout his career. Primarily, this was by design. Ever the planner, he wanted to be the one who helped others achieve success and never wanted to be the one being singled out. He wasn’t seeking accolades, though many were lauded upon him. He always felt that by making the ones you are working with stars, he would, in turn, be a star. Very few people have the opportunity to shine beyond their years, but David will be an exception. His name continues to be quoted at marketing and sales meetings throughout this country and his definitive mark remains on countless communities. He made many others’ stars. Now, it is time for his star to shine on brighter than ever.