Kelly J. Doran, 66, longtime Twin Cities real estate developer and founder of The Doran Group, passed away on December 28, 2023, after battling cancer. Kelly was larger than life, lived boldly and had a giant heart. He loved to tell stories and laugh, while always seeing the silver lining in any situation.

Born in Duluth in 1957, Kelly was inspired by his single mother, Donna, to use his public education to make a difference in the world. Raised alongside his older sisters Janis, Jean and Nancy, Kelly graduated from Minneapolis Southwest High School (Class of ‘75) before earning an undergraduate degree and an MBA from the University of Minnesota.

Kelly is widely recognized as a leader in the multi-family housing industry, completing dozens of high-profile projects across the Twin Cities and Denver, including luxury apartments and student housing. He partnered for many years with his mentor and friend Robert Muir, developing millions of square feet of shopping centers. In 2007, Kelly founded Doran Companies and began building housing, later selling the company and moving the management of his real estate portfolio into The Doran Group, now run by his son Evan. Although not an architect, Kelly loved to lead in the creation of designs that added to the fabric of the community. The handprints of this work on innovative design are located throughout our communities.

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Move to new building will enable future growth, offer key amenities for employees coming into the office

Bloomington, MN – The Doran Group, a leading Twin Cities real estate development firm owned by Kelly and Evan Doran, announced today the relocation of its corporate headquarters from Bloomington to Eden Prairie by the end of April 2023. The company closed on the purchase of 6423 City West Parkway in Eden Prairie this week, a nearly 19,000 square foot multi-level office building with employee amenities that include free parking, a full gym with locker rooms, ample bike storage, a game area, kitchen and indoor and outdoor gathering spaces.

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Lyra Apartments in Centennial officially opened in April more than
50 percent pre-leased

Bloomington, MN – The Doran Group, the new name for Kelly Doran’s real estate company, announced today that Doran-CSM, Centennial, LLC – an affiliated entity – has sold Lyra Apartments to a publicly held real estate investment trust for $95 million. The 215-unit apartment community at 9641 East Geddes Avenue in suburban Denver opened on April 1, 2022, and was developed, leased, and managed by The Doran Group.

The Lyra apartment community saw above-market leasing activity, opening 50 percent pre-leased in April and reaching the 95 percent stabilization threshold within a few months.

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Bloomington, MN – Twin Cities Business Magazine today announced The Doran Group is the winner of three coveted “Best of Business” categories, including: Best Multifamily Developer, Best Commercial Real Estate Developer and Best Commercial Property Manager.

“We are thrilled to receive this honor, and appreciate all the readers in the Twin Cities selecting us as the winner,” said The Doran Group owner Kelly Doran. “I’m so proud of the team we have assembled and the hard work they do day in and day out. This is really a testament to their work. And I’m also thankful for every resident who continues to make our apartments and townhomes their homes. We take enormous pride in our work, which is all in service to them.”

Significant demand sees 70 percent of the 151 newly available apartments leased just two months after opening, 100 percent of the existing 30,000 square feet of retail fully leased

Bloomington, MN
 – Just three years after Kelly Doran first welcomed residents to the Reserve at Arbor Lakes luxury gated apartment community in Maple Grove and some of his adjacent retail spaces at the Village at Arbor Lakes opened their doors, Doran Properties Group announced today it successfully opened the community’s third residential building, with nearly 70 percent of the new 151 apartments leased just two months after opening. Additionally, the company is nearly finished constructing 5,200 square feet of additional retail space on an adjacent site as the original 30,000 square feet it built and manages as part of the “Village at Arbor Lakes” is fully leased.


“We remain bullish on Maple Grove and this 40-acre development we broke ground on just four years ago,” said Kelly Doran, founder of Doran Properties Group. “I’m excited that after hundreds of millions of dollars in investment here, we are already breaking ground on our fourth residential building for the Reserve at Arbor Lakes, we are building out an additional retail building as the 30,000 square feet we developed, own and manage is at capacity – not to mention the more than 135,000 square feet of new developments on the site that include a Wahlburgers, Wings Financial Credit Union, Sleep Number and a Resident Inn/Spring Hill Suites hotel.”

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Jonathan Bishop brings with him extensive capital markets and multifamily experience.

Bloomington, MN – Prolific Twin Cities multifamily and commercial real estate developer Kelly Doran today announced Jonathan Bishop will serve as Chief Financial Officer for Doran Properties Group, a multigenerational development company Doran launched with his son, Evan Doran, earlier this month. Bishop has extensive capital markets and multifamily experience, having worked in the commercial real estate and banking industry for nearly two decades including most recently at Wells Fargo Bank and IRET (now CenterSpace).

“With more than 160 employees responsible for developing, leasing, building and managing Doran Properties Group’s extensive multifamily and commercial developments in the Twin Cities and Colorado, we will benefit tremendously from Jonathan’s expertise and his relationships in the industry,” said Doran. “We are fortunate as an organization to have maintained a strong financial position despite the pandemic and other challenges over the past year. Jonathan will play a key role in helping to preserve the underlying strength of our business and ensuring our continued growth.”

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The move coincides with Doran’s final sale of all remaining ownership interest in Doran Companies, the company he founded nearly 15 years ago.

Bloomington, MN – Kelly Doran, longtime developer of commercial real estate in the Twin Cities, announced today he has sold all remaining ownership interest in Doran Companies and is launching his new venture, The Doran Group, with more than 160 employees and its entire real estate portfolio under its direct management.

“I’m excited to announce the launch of The Doran Group, a multi-generational development company I am starting with my son Evan Doran and a talented team of high-caliber leaders, many of whom I have worked with for years,” said Doran. “When I first sold majority-interest in Doran Companies two years ago, it was to get back to what I love most – which is developing, designing, building and managing a real estate portfolio under the exclusive control of our new company.”

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The Doran Family is proud to support Summit Academy ( with a $10,000 matching grant for Give to the Max Day on November 19th. Learn more about this incredible organization here.

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