Doug Smith

Doug Smith

Doug Smith

Doug Smith is the manager and/or owner of the various business entities that comprise Hawthorne Capital.

Hawthorne Capital was a natural evolution of Doug’s business career, which involved buying and selling over 100 houses. In his early days as an investor, he and his team bought, fixed and resold or leased properties, often employing creative strategies to maximize profits. These strategies included short sales, wholesaling, subject-to and lease-options. He went on to teach many of these techniques in seminars, courses and articles. Later, he bought dozens of houses for cash and then resold them on owner financing. It was here that Doug discovered the power and profitability of this technique, which he and his team now use to sell rural land.

Apart from his real estate investments and Hawthorne Capital, Doug founded, led and ultimately sold a pioneering property technology company named REI Network, LP. It owns several websites, the most well known of which is The company has landed on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies list multiple times. In addition, it has appeared on the lists of HBJ (Houston Business Journal) 100 Fastest Growing Companies and HBJ Best Places to Work. [Note: HBJ subscription required to view those last two pages.]

Doug was admitted into and actively participates in Entrepreneurs Organization (EO), which is an exclusive group for business owners with substantial gross revenues. He was also named to the HBJ 40 Under 40 list and learned Spanish after spending a year studying Spanish and traveling in Spain and Chile. To give back, he regularly invests in veteran-owned businesses through the Veterans Biz Battle at Rice University, mentors fledgling local entrepreneurs and provides annual scholarships to graduating seniors from the high school he attended.

Long before his business career blossomed, Doug spent his time growing up in the country, just south of Lubbock, Texas. He attended school, played in baseball leagues with his twin brother, and paid his dues by working on his dad’s cotton farm. After graduating as the valedictorian of Cooper High School, he made the short drive to the campus of Texas Tech University where he proceeded to spend four years studying, socializing, and preparing for his future. A serious student, Doug majored in Management Information Systems, minored in Spanish, served as the president of the largest student organization, wrote a senior thesis, and interned as a software engineer at IBM in Austin. His hard work was rewarded when he finished with a 4.0 GPA and was named the top graduate out of 570 students in the MIS department, the College of Business and the Honors College.

He then moved to Houston to work as a software developer for ExxonMobil. After reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad and several other business books, he was inspired to resign from corporate America to pursue his dream of becoming an entrepreneur and investor.

Doug is proud to have built and maintained a solid reputation in the local business community. Although he values written agreements because of the clarity they provide, he has successfully executed on many deals that were made on a handshake. He has never had a foreclosure, filed for bankruptcy or even missed a mortgage payment or bill that he is aware of. He maintains a blemish-free credit report with a credit score of over 800.

He is grateful that he was able to build up his net worth from around $25,000 when he began investing to several million and that he was able to use those funds to enter the land business. But with that said, he does acknowledge the importance of both borrowing and pooling funds to do even larger deals, more deals and to maximize the returns on those deals. That, of course, brings us to the creation of Hawthorne Capital.