art and craig at whs

Venerable Becomes Meritus

Our company was established in 1991 when founder Art DeMuro moved from Phoenix to Portland and started Venerable Group, Inc.  During the next 21 years, the team at Venerable touched many important historic properties in Portland, including the Minnesota Hotel, Telegram Building, Northwest Fence & Wire Works, the Ladd Carriage House, Mason Ehrman Building, Fire Station No. 7, and the White Stag Block.  The firm was also known for community-enhancing new construction and adaptive reuse projects like the Porter Glisan Building in the Pearl District, Irvington Corner, LaTorre Condominiums, Cascade Plaza in Gresham, and the Mill Pond Village housing development in Astoria.  Art became a highly-regarded leader in Portland’s historic preservation and real estate development community, but his time here was cut short when he passed away in 2012.  Art’s business partner and best friend, Craig Kelly, became President of Venerable.  Craig went on to lead the company in development projects such as Washington High School and the Portland Clinic at 50th & Sandy.

At the beginning of 2020, Venerable became Meritus Property Group.  This change represented the final step in a transitional journey that has been underway at Venerable since Art’s passing.  Though the legal entity that Art formed decades ago fulfilled its purpose, his vision for historic preservation and excellence in property development & management lives on in Meritus.  All of the same people provide the same leadership and services under the Meritus name.