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Admittedly humbled, Barber said his priority now is his two children, who moved to New York with their mother, Keri Barber, after the couple divorced.

Young, energetic and with access to easy loan money, Barber made a name for himself with plans to develop $750 million worth of luxury, mixed use commercial/residential projects Michael Kors Purse Orange

A single "spec house" one built without a buyer lined up in the Covington subdivision of Fayetteville was his ticket into construction and development in 2001, when the robust economy was driving the market upward, Barber said.

He made a small profit and graduated to building townhouses near the UA campus.

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The travelers included Barber and Keri; Kaffka and wife Laura; and the father of the two women, John Ed Chambers of Danville.

At 35, Barber is finding his way in the city slowly waiting tables at a restaurant that he declined to name on Manhattan's Upper East Side, and searching for a better paying job.

By 2004, Barber was readying his first subdivision for construction.

Part of The Barber Group's brand building was its reputation for flashy, expensive parties.

That party included a live charity auction for a trip to Las Vegas to see Jermain Taylor defend his middleweight boxing title against Bernard Hopkins.

The Barber Group formed in February 2004 Michael Kors Backpack 2018

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Barber looks back at the party days as a lesson learned about the dangers of excess.

Barber sought to establish the company's name as a brand synonymous with hip, urban, luxury living. Slim and 6 foot 2, he was at the center of a young and trendy crowd, many of whom worked for him.

"I hope the last few years are a footnote in my obit," he said. "If there is any positive thing that came out of the past five years and there have been some positive and some negative then my kids are it."

He started off small, building homes with loans from his father in law's Chambers Michael Kors Purse With Tassel

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with sights set on developing posh, mixed used ventures in the downtown portions of area cities. Barber was chief executive officer and brother in law Seth Kaffka was president.

Bank, then launched into a series of high end condominium, hotel and retail ventures with backing from financial institutions in Arkansas and elsewhere.

He benefited from his high profile family connections. Not only did his wife's father own a bank, she is a niece of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. Hunt and others who got Northwest Arkansas growing," Barber said. "I was incredibly lucky."

In 2004, Barber and business partner David Dallas hosted a Christmas gala at the Springdale airport to thank investors and vendors. A bare airplane hanger was transformed with plush, red carpet, silver chairs and tables draped in rich fabrics. More than 600 guests danced under a canopy of Christmas lights and swilled custom made cocktails.

With two bankruptcy petitions denied, he's on the hook for more than $50 million and is trying to build a new life in New York City with his young children.

Barber grew up in Jonesboro, the son of a salesman and the oldest of four siblings. After high school, he moved to Fayetteville in 1994 to attend the University of Arkansas and was a full time journalism Michael Kors Wallet Macys student until 1999, when he married college sweetheart Keri Chambers.

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Summer jobs during high school and college included working as a teller at a Jonesboro bank, so Barber fell naturally into banking when his new father in law bought the Bank of Elkins, which later became Chambers Bank of Danville. Barber went to work as a loan assistant.

The following year, the Christmas party grew even bigger, with 1,200 guests and entertainment by recording artists Kool the Gang.

A group headed by National Home Center's Joe Frame and Brent Hanby paid $34,000 for the jaunt, leaving aboard a private Pinnacle Air jet that very night.

But when the party was over, Barber and his investors were left holding a bill he couldn't pay.

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He went on to buy a number of lots to build homes in the Clabber Creek neighborhood in Fayetteville with a loan from Chambers Bank.

in the hearts of area cities.

´╗┐Full circle

What the company lacked in experience, it replaced with youthful energy and image.

"It snowballed into something ridiculous," he said. "It was a very foolish time. The best advice we got at that time was from the ones and they were the minority who were saying, 'Cut that out!'"

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Brandon Barber proved himself willing to gamble on real estate and with high stakes games of chance in Las Vegas casinos. He rode Northwest Arkansas' growth bubble for 10 years until it popped, leaving him with an astonishing debt of $54 million.

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He housed his growing family in a million dollar home and partied with the who's who of Northwest Arkansas.

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The next day, the group jetted from Las Vegas to New York to watch the Dallas Cowboys play the Giants.

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