Native New Yorker Rose started his career as a lawyer and accountant before building his real estate reputation as the president of Arlen Realty and Development in the early '70s. In 1977 he left to found his own firm, the Georgetown Group, which eventually took control of some five million square feet of commercial and residential properties around the country. By the early '90s, Rose had parlayed his real estate fortune into influence on the city's philanthropic circuit. Named chairman of the New York Public Library in 1990, he oversaw a renovation of the Main Reading Room, a rehabilitation of the Fifth Avenue building, and the redevelopment of Bryant Park. In 1995, he relinquished his seat to care for his then-terminally ill first-wife; he returned to the scene in 2000 when he was named chairman of the Lincoln Center redevelopment project. He held the position for just a year before resigning abruptly in October 2001, frustrated with the fractious squabbling that was holding up the project.