“I seem to be really obsessed with heads,” says Keith Kaplan. He’s referring to the collection of Russian art surrounding us in the living room of his airy, top-floor condo in the center of West Hollywood, but he might equally be talking about his penchant for people-watching and his admiration for the brains that have shaped the city.
A Chicago native with an immigrant’s passion for his chosen hometown, Kaplan has lived in West Hollywood for most of its 32 years as an independent city. Now chairman of West Hollywood’s Chamber of Commerce—and one of the top real estate agents in town—he shares that passion with an affable smile, easy charm and a deep connection to local history.
As a UCLA undergrad in the late 1970s and early ’80s, Kaplan says, West Hollywood was “where we came to hang out, to party, to socialize.” While attending the University of Chicago’s business school, he spent summers back in L.A. during West Hollywood’s 1984 campaign for independence.
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