The City of Lauderhill was established on June 20, 1959. The “Founding Father” was a builder/developer -Herbert Sadkin. The first officers of the City, appointed by the Governor of Florida, were Harold Wolk, who later became the first Mayor. Early Council Members included David Shapiro, Herbert Sadkin, Nathan Ringler and Jerome Wolk. They held office until the first general elections in the city on November 2, 1965.
Herbert Sadkin really had planned to name Lauderhill “Sunnydale” upon its inception. After some discussions with his dear friend, New York Times journalist, William Safire, the name Sunnydale would soon be second choice. Safire explained he disliked the name “Sunnydale” because it sounded like a neighborhood in Brooklyn. For whatever reasons, Mr. Safire liked the word play of “hill” and “dale”. Although Mr. Sadkin mentioned to Safire there are no hills there, Mr. Safire replied, “There are probably no dales in Lauderdale, either!” Somehow, out of that simple discussion, the name Lauderhill was born.
When the first houses were developed in Lauderhill, very few people wanted to live in the “Dairy Farm country.” In the early years, there were actually far more cows than people within the borders of the City. Only until only recently, traces of the MCArthur Dairy Farm were still evident. Thousands of acres in early Lauderhill were lands full of grazing cows that produced fresh milk for the widely known dairy.
The area still referred to as Inverrary, the neighborhood was designed as a planned urban development. This innovative housing plan was designed to arrange the land and housing developments before the building began. Each section was carefully designed for a specific purpose. Inverrary later became the home of the Inverrary Country Club and site of the Jackie Gleason Inverrary Golf Classic.
In the late 70s, the Northwest section of the city was developed as a single-family home community.
This region was considered to be so far west people would say they were living “In the Everglades!”
In terms of the commercial property, Lauderhill was at the forefront of commercial development as well. Next to the Dairy Farm, the Lauderhill Mall, which opened in 1966, was the first enclosed air-conditioned mall to open in the southeastern United States. The land where the mall is located used to be a place to trap alligators and other animals
Lauderhill was one of two developments (the other in New York) that began largely as off-the-shelf architectural designs which had been available to the public at Macy’s department store. The homes, which had been designed by Andrew Geller, had originally been on display at the “Typical American House” at the American Exhibition in Moscow. Following a group of approximately 200 of the homes constructed in Montauk, New York in 1963 and 1964, the same developer, Herbert Sadkin of the New York-based All-State Properties reprised his success in New York, building a series of similar homes in Florida, calling the development Lauderhill.
In 2003, the New York Times described the Macy’s homes: “The package deal included a 730- to 1,200-square-foot house on a 75-by-100-foot lot, as well as state-of-the art appliances, furniture, housewares and everything else a family would need for a weekend in the sun, including toothbrushes and toilet paper. The cost was roughly $13,000 to $17,000.”
In 1970, the Inverrary Country Club was built, and in 1972 its golf course became home to the Jackie Gleason Inverrary Classic. Gleason himself built his final home on the golf course. Up until the late 1980s-early 1990s, Lauderhill was mostly a retirement community and a second home for snowbirds (especially in the Inverrary neighborhood).
On November 9, 2007, in the Central Broward Regional Park, the Main Event cricket field was opened, and on May 22, 2010, became the first ground to host an international between two full members of the ICC on U.S. soil. The park features many other sports venues as well.