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Houlihan family patriach, James G. Houlihan, dead at 95

Industry stalwart James G. Houlihan, a longtime resident of Bronxville, and Palm Beach, Florida, passed away on March 2, 2019, at the age of 95.

Born in Manhattan in 1923, he was the only child of second generation immigrants James A. Houlihan and Genevieve McConnell Houlihan.

His grandfather, Dan Houlihan, came from County Kerry, Ireland at age 19 and rose from laborer to CEO of his own successful real estate company that continues to thrive today.

Jim was raised in the Kingsbridge section of the Bronx. He graduated from All Hallows High School in 1941 and attended Manhattan College before joining the US Army and serving in the Signal Corp under General Douglas MacArthur.

He graduated from Manhattan College in 1947 and received his Master’s degree in Real Estate in 1948 from Columbia University School of Business. He was in the first group of students to obtain their MBA in Urban Land Economics.

Jim started his first job in real estate in 1948 with Leonard Beck, advisor to the Rockefeller and Astor families. During this time he met Mary Murray (May) and they married in 1951 and raised a family of six children.

He joined his family’s real estate business in 1955 and was a partner from 1960 – 2017 in Houlihan-Parnes Realtors, LLC.

In 1960, Jim was elected President of the Bronx Board of Realtors. In 1964, at age 41, he was elected President of the New York State Association of Realtors and in 1966 he was elected Regional Vice President of the National Association of Realtors. Jim also served as Chairman of the Finance Committee of the Real Estate Board of New York.

In 1967, Jim and his cousin Dan merged their business with Howard Parnes, a successful broker and real estate investor and Houlihan-Parnes Realtors, LLC was created.

In 2004, he published a book called “A Hitch In Hell, An Account of My U.S. Army Service in World War II”.

Jim was a Knight in the Order of Malta and a member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre, Old Guard of Palm Beach Golfers as well as being active in many other Catholic and philanthropic endeavors.

Surviving Jim are his children: James J. Houlihan (Patricia), John G. Houlihan (Judy), William A. Houlihan (Claire), Mary H. Coleman (James), Thomas P. Houlihan (Genevieve), and Patricia MacRae (David). Also surviving are his 18 grandchildren and nine great grandchildren,

The wake will held tomorrow, Thursday, March 7 from 2-4 pm and 6-9 p.m. at Fred H. McGrath’s Funeral Home, 20 Cedar Street, Bronxville. The funeral mass will be held on Friday, March 8,  at 10:45 am at St. Joseph’s Church in Bronxville.

In lieu of flowers, donations are requested to the Phyllis F Albstein Fund for Brain Science at Johns Hopkins University.

Individuals can make gifts online at the website:

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