August 13, 2020

Nathan Wautier: Shareholder at Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren

What do you do?

Shareholder, Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren. I run the Commercial Real Estate group in Madison.

If you could share a meal with any 4 individuals, living or dead, who would they be?

My great-great-great grandfather who emigrated from Belgium, my father, and my two sons.

What was your first job?

Grew up working on a dairy farm but first outside paid job was driving a tractor during the Cherry harvest in Door County when I was 14.  I haven't really enjoyed cherries since.

Favorite Hoan/Nolen event?

Any of the private dinners

Song you'd sing at Karaoke?

Currently, either Luckenbach, Texas or one of the 4 roles in Highwayman; likely the dam builder or spaceman.

Favorite/least favorite part of your job?

Favorite: finding creative ways to get deals done. Least Favorite: dealing with uncreative people.

Book/podcast you’re listening to right now?

Again to Carthage.

Biggest pet peeve?

Obsessing over things you can't control.

What skill would you like to master?

The Spanish language.

What’s the best way to start the day?


What are some things you’ve had to unlearn?

The perceptions/opinions of others that settle as facts in your mind through life.  I have to challenge myself on why I think a certain way; whether it's because I've actually thought critically about something or because I've just adopted something I was told or observed long ago.

Tell me where you would like to see the city in five years (as far as policies or culture, etc)?

More friendly, I would like a hello from everyone I walk past.

What drew you to join Nolen?

My positive impression of the people I already knew in Nolen and desire to meet those I didn’t.

What could you give a 40-minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation?

Tax Incremental Financing

What do you wish your brain was better at doing?

Learning languages

What are your hobbies, and how did you get into them?

 I have a bunch and they constantly evolve, currently I'm running a lot and am learning how to fly-fish.  Running is my current form of exercise (I seem to switch every 6-12 months) and fly-fishing came from a guided trip in Steamboat last month.

What’s the best and worst piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Best: There are enough people who want to be friends or work with you; don't waste time on those who don't. Worst: Separate work life from personal life.

What was the last show you binge-watched?

The Mandalorian.

What’s your "Death Row Meal?"

Cheeseburger and chocolate chip cookie.

What originally got you interested in your current field of work?

As someone with no knowledge of the law growing up, real estate was the most relatable and tangible area.

What career advice would you give to your younger self?

Get engaged and meet people.

If you could do it all over again, would you pursue the same career? Why or why not?

Yes, my job is intellectually stimulating and also allows me the freedom to get engaged in unrelated interests.

What do you regret not doing in the last year?

Travelling more with family, we had to cancel a planned trip to Spain and another to India.

How are you handling COVID/how has it affected you?

 I'm a bit sheepish to admit it as so many have faced significant struggles but I think I'm handling it well.  Its slowed my life down significantly which has made me more present for both family and work.  I'm eating better, exercising more and am just more relaxed all around.

A genie gives you three wishes—what are they?

Keep me (and my family) Happy, Healthy and Safe.

What was the first thing you wanted to be when you grew up?

A mailman like my Dad (he was a dairy farmer and did the mail route in my rural town on the side).

Favorite spot in Madison

The Southwest Bike Path on a football Saturday.

What's your favorite board/card game?

 Couillon (Belgian card game similar to Euchre or Sheepshead)

When will you know you've "made it"?

I believe I knew it on January 3, 2015.  It was the day we closed on our current house and where we plan on raising our kids.  

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