Michael J.

Through his dynamic leadership and visionary thinking, Michael Darby has been not only the driving force in Monument Realty’s success, but also a recognized and admired real estate executive in Washington, DC. As the principal and founder, Michael has built Monument Realty into a full-service real estate firm with expertise in financing, development management, commercial and retail leasing, asset management, residential sales, and property and construction management.

Best recognized for thinking out of the box and creating value out of complicated situations, Michael has successfully taken on projects that many others have passed on. Michael has always been comfortable leading the pack into evolving areas by using his company’s collective experience to tailor his buildings to the needs of the market.

Monument Realty was the first to build new apartments in the SW Waterfront area in 2002, they built multiple buildings at the Herndon end of the Dulles Toll Road during the ‘Tech Boom’ and pre-leased all of them because Michael adjusted the shape of the buildings to make the floor plans more ‘Tech’ friendly and the buildings more technologically advanced. Monument Realty was the first developer to invest heavily buying 1.5 million sf of developable land in the Ballpark area in SE Washington because Michael was confident the Washington Nationals Ballpark would increase land prices and create office, retail and residential demand.

Michael believes that he can always design a better building for his users because their needs are constantly evolving and his buildings need to stay ahead of these needs. This excites him because he finds this kind of challenge stimulating. He believes that creating a better building creates more value for his investment partners and building users.

An active member of the Washington, DC region’s development industry for more than two decades, Michael previously worked with some of the most prominent developers in the Washington DC area including Carr America in the 80’s and Akridge in the 90’s. During those years he managed the development of many prominent Washington buildings including such landmark restoration projects as the Willard Hotel, the Southern Railway Building and the Victor Building.

Michael began his career in his native Australia, working with a Melbourne-based general contractor, and holds a degree in Engineering and Business from the University of Melbourne. He has been active in numerous regional real estate organizations over the years and has served on the Board of the DC Building Industry Association.

Michael is involved with several charities and his company have been longtime supporters of the annual Real Estate Games, a charitable sports competition that supports the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), and he was the event co-chair for six years.

  • Hometown: Melbourne, Australia
  • Hidden talent: Juggling while moving around the office on his hover board
  • Best known as: An adrenaline junkie
  • Favorite food: Roast leg of lamb (as long as it’s Australian lamb)

Latest Developments.

We’re developing projects throughout the Washington, DC area—a few of our biggest are highlighted below.

Monument Innovation Center

  • Property Use: Life Science Office & Lab
  • Project Type: Ground-up Development
  • Size: 135,000 SF, 4 Floors
  • Status: Under Development

40 Patterson

40 Patterson St NE, Washington, DC
  • Property Use: Apartments
  • Project Type: Ground-up Development
  • Size: 310 Apartments, 13 Floors
  • Status: Under Construction

2 Patterson

2 Patterson St NE, Washington, DC
  • Property Use: Apartments & Retail
  • Project Type: Ground-up Development
  • Size: 577 Apartments, 13 Floors, 18,000 SF Retail
  • Status: Under Development