January 18, 1938 – March 17, 2018
It is with much sadness that we announce the passing of the Founder of The Christopher Companies, Frederick A. Kober.
Fred founded the company in 1974 and presided over its growth and success until 1998. During this time, the company developed a reputation for quality and integrity. Fred had a passion for design and possessed a unique ability to orchestrate experts from all disciplines to affect his vision for the development of remarkable and livable homes, and collectively, communities.
Fred was a respected industry leader in Christopher’s home market as well as at the regional and national level. He was a charitable man, generously giving his time and resources to numerous non-profit organizations.
Fred, who turned 80 in January, was a graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Business School and started the Christopher Companies in 1974. He was an early pioneer in the Reston area and his companies have been responsible for the design, development and building of well over 7,000 homes in the Washington DC, Tidewater and Charlottesville, VA and Sussex, DE markets.
He was active in the Northern Virginia Building Industry Association where he served as a Life Director, and was the Association’s President in 1989. Fred was Builder of the Year in 1990 and received the prestigious Emil Keen Award in 1994. His commitment to all things building also included over 30 years of involvement with the Urban Land Institute (ULI) where he served as and where he was honored as a Life Trustee after serving as a Vice-Chairman and member of the Executive Committee. He also served as Chair of ULI’s Washington District Council. In addition, Fred was active with the National Building Museum for many years where he was elected “Honorary Life Trustee.”
Fred believed in giving back to the communities where he built through charitable works, most notably the Northern Virginia Building Industry Association’s “Builder’s House 2001” project in 1994, which raised over half a million dollars for the Ronald McDonald House, as well as for other local charities.
“Fred was a leader, a mentor, and most of all, a friend. He was a true gentleman and a statesman among us. He set an example for all to follow and left big shoes to fill.
We at Christopher are honored to have known Fred and humbled to have been afforded the opportunity to carry on his ideals and principles which are forever embodied in the culture of the company he founded.
We will miss you dearly.”
— Craig Havenner, President of The Christopher Companies