The list of clients that NAI Capital’s Tim Foutz has represented over his four decades as a commercial real estate broker reads like a “Who’s Who” of the San Fernando Valley business community.

Walt Disney Co., Capital Cities/ABC Inc., Dole Food Co., DTS Inc., Chatsworth Products Inc. and Sheridan Ebbert Real Estate Development are just a few.

But that’s not surprising, given Foutz got into the business in 1971 when he was only 21, helping out a physician uncle who dabbled in real estate. So about now, he might be expected to retire to a low-key life at his 3-acre Somis avocado orchard.

Instead, the 66-year-old Valley native is taking on the biggest challenge of his career. In March, he was named chief executive officer of the Encino brokerage, and last month he was elected to the firm’s five-member board of directors.

The ascension was abrupt and followed the rare public airing of a tiff at the firm – said to stem from “philosophical differences” among its leaders – in an industry where appearances are critical. So Foutz’s long experience will be important as he seeks to put that turmoil behind the firm and close deals.

“I’m here to educate, teach and inspire,” Foutz said. “That’s the value in having put in 44 years.”

Read the full story in the May 18 issue of the San Fernando Valley Business Journal.