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Category ArchiveForest City Ratner Companies

HFZ’s Laurie Golub Becomes COO at Square Mile Capital

Laurie Golub, formerly of HFZ Capital Group, will become the chief operating officer at finance and investment management firm Square Mile Capital Management, according to a press release issued by Square Mile today.  

Golub, who has more than 25 years of experience in the real estate industry, will officially start in her new role on Jan. 8.

“Square Mile has grown significantly in recent years as we’ve successfully diversified our investment strategies and capabilities,” Square Mile’s Chief Executive Officer Craig Solomon said in the release. “As we continue to execute our business plan, we believe now is the time to further enhance our already strong leadership team. Laurie’s extensive transactional background, outstanding relationships within the industry and proven business building skills make her the ideal person for this new role.”

Prior to joining Square Mile, Golub was the general counsel and COO at development and investment firm HFZ starting in 2012 and ending in July 2017, according to her Linkedin page.

She was responsible for all legal matters for HFZ and oversaw the acquisitions of numerous high-profile properties for the company’s luxury condominium projects. This includes The Chatsworth at 340-344 West 72nd Street, 11 Beach Street and 505 West 19th Street among others.

Before that she worked as general counsel and managing director of business affairs at Africa Israel USA from 2009 to 2012, as CO previously reported.

And prior to that she was an associate general counsel at Forest City Ratner Companies from 2004 to 2009. There she played a role in the pre-development of the $5 billion Atlantic Yards project and was also responsible for negotiating the acquisition of the New Jersey Nets, according to a press release from when she joined HFZ. She led the negotiations for the $400 million Barclays Center naming rights as well.

Golub got her start as an associate at Robinson Silverman Pearce Aronsohn & Berman in 1993 before moving over to Morrison Cohen Singer & Weinstein, where she represented clients involving real estate and corporate transactions.

Golub earned her law degree from New York University School of Law in 1989 and a bachelor’s degree in business and corporate communications from Boston University in 1986.

“I look forward to leveraging my background, experiences and relationships to add significant value to this exciting new growth opportunity as a senior member of the Square Mile team,” Golub said in a prepared statement.

Representatives from HFZ did not immediately respond for a request for comment.

Source: commercial

TCS, Youth Education Organization Join Cornell Tech’s Commercial Tenant Roster

Fresh off of securing a $50 million investment from information technology consulting firm Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) for its Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island, Forest City New York has signed both TCS and youth education organization First New York City to leases at the newly minted Tata Innovation Center—the Cornell Tech building formerly known as The Bridge.

TCS inked a 10-year lease for 7,900 square feet on the third floor of the six-story, 235,000-square-foot building, while First NYC agreed to a five-year deal for 3,300 square feet on the sixth floor, sources told Commercial Observer. Both tenants are slated to move into their new spaces next year.

TCS and Forest City announced the IT consultancy’s sizable investment in Cornell Tech on Monday, which they said would assist “the first phase of capital development on the Roosevelt Island campus” and provide support for “technology research and expanding K-12 digital literacy programs” in New York City public schools.

The Weiss/Manfredi-designed building, which now bears the Tata name, will house a mix of Cornell Tech academic uses as well as commercial tenants including Citigroup, tech investment firm Two Sigma and chocolate manufacturer Ferrero International—all of which are expected to leverage and collaborate with the tech and research resources found on the 2-million-square-foot Roosevelt Island campus, which partially opened this past fall.

Asking rents in the deals were not clear. A CBRE team of Mary Ann Tighe, Evan Haskell, David Caperna, Evan Fiddle, Sacha Zarba and Ross Zimbalist represented Forest City in the transaction, while Newmark Knight Frank’s Neil Goldmacher and Josh Friedman worked on behalf of First NYC. TCS had no broker representation.

“Cornell Tech and Forest City envisioned the [Tata Innovation Center’s] tenancy as a highly diverse group of top-tier companies and institutions that would collaborate with students and faculty, using technology to drive innovation,” Tighe said in a statement.

Ali Esmaeilzadeh, Forest City New York’s senior vice president of commercial development and director of commercial leasing, said in a statement that the companies comprising Cornell Tech’s growing commercial tenant roster have been drawn to the campus “not because they’re just looking for office space in New York City.”

“They want a front-row seat to the best tech talent and researches and to be a part of the unique ecosystem of innovation Cornell Tech has built on campus,” he said.

Representatives for NKF did not immediately provide comment.

Source: commercial

CO’s ‘Women in Construction & Design’ Event Celebrates Breaking the Glass Ceiling

Some of the most accomplished women working in the fields of construction, architecture and development gathered at Commercial Observer’s “Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Leading Women in Construction & Design” event on Tuesday, where the conversation revolved around both the challenges facing, and the opportunities available to, women in a traditionally male-dominated field.

The morning was anchored by CO’s presentation of its 2017 Women in Construction Awards to six individuals who have made a mark upon their respective industries over the course of their careers.

The “Barrier-Breaker Award,” honoring women who have set a precedent in their fields, were presented to Aine Brazil, vice chairman at engineering firm Thornton Tomasetti; Jan Hilgeman, vice president of construction at Hines; and Carol Patterson, a senior partner at law firm Zetlin & De Chiara.

The “Woman on the Rise Award,” celebrating some of the most promising individuals working in the industry today, were given to Pascale Sablan, a senior associate at S9 Architecture, and Margaret Wrzos, an assistant project manager at AECOM Tishman.

And the “Innovative Designer/Engineer Award” was presented to Marianne Kwok, a senior designer at Kohn Pedersen Fox.

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Keynote speaker Linda Chiarelli at CO’s “Women in Construction & Design” event. Photo: Aaron Adler

But the day also featured three broad-ranging panel discussions and a keynote address from Linda Chiarelli, vice president for capital projects and facilities at New York University. Chiarelli, who served as deputy director of construction for Forest City Ratner Companies before joining NYU, noted that women make up only 9 percent of the construction industry’s workforce—with many of those jobs in administrative and non-construction-related roles.

But she also cited progress from the days when job interviewers would ask “if I planned to have kids,” and urged attendees to be aware of the city’s new law prohibiting employers from inquiring about job applicants’ previous salaries—a regulation designed to lessen the pay gap faced by women and people of color. “You should all be aware [of the law],” Chiarelli said.

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(From left) Karla Pascarella, Marissa Kelly, Stacey Dackson, Megumi Brod, Maey Khaled and Anita Woolley at CO’s “Women in Construction & Design” event. Photo: Aaron Adler

She was followed by the morning’s first panel, “Challenges and Opportunities for Women—Fostering a Culture of Diversity from the Field to the Boardroom.” Anita Woolley, first vice president of strategy and communications for AECOM’s construction services group, noted the benefits of “having people of different backgrounds” on staff, citing studies indicating that “diverse teams are more successful.”

Maey Khaled, director of technical services at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering, recalled engineering courses where she’d frequently “be the only woman in the class” and stressed the need to foster industry participation from women at an earlier age group. Stacey Dackson, a project manager at Structure Tone, echoed that sentiment and the need to educate young women about the career opportunities available in the construction industry, citing the field’s “tremendous economic viability.”

Marissa Kelly, a project executive at Cauldwell Wingate Company, said that there is still the flawed perception that “women are too emotional to be in leadership positions” at a corporate level—a notion that “holds women back” in the industry, she said—while Megumi Brod, senior vice president and Northeast regional development officer for Rockefeller Group, urged attendees to both “be a mentor” to other women in their fields and also “make a mentor” who can help guide them through their career paths.

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(From left) Melissa Grzymala, Helena Durst and Jane Smith at CO’s “Women in Construction & Design” event. Photo: Aaron Adler

The second panel of the day, “Women Leaders in Construction & Design—How They Paved the Way,” included the likes of Kimberly Steimle Vaughan, chief marketing officer and chief people officer at construction firm Suffolk, who cited her company’s efforts to “create a culture of inclusion” and “infuse people in the organization from different backgrounds.” Vaughan said that while roughly a third of the firm’s workforce is comprised of women, she had been to job sites where there were more women at work than men, and that diversity had become a key tenant of Suffolk’s corporate philosophy.

Melissa Grzymala, an executive project manager at Faithful+Gould, recalled a high school guidance counselor’s incredulity at her career goal of becoming an engineer, while Elisabeth Malsch, a principal at Thornton Tomasetti, noted the importance of hiring women given how they occupy a roughly equal share of the graduating classes at most higher education institutions. “If you’re not hiring women, you’re not hiring the top of the class,” Malsch said.

Jane Smith, a partner at architecture and interior design firm Spacesmith, said that “obviously things have changed [in the industry]” since she first started, and urged the conversation away from the obstacles facing women. “The women in this room shouldn’t need to worry about whether they’re women or men,” Smith said. “Let’s talk about how we can succeed.”

Helena Durst, a principal at the Durst Organization, agreed with Smith’s argument, noting that the principles being discussed on the panel “are not male or female values; they’re hirable values…. We shouldn’t be talking about maternity or paternity leave; we should be talking about child care.”

But Durst also acknowledged that her own company “has a lot to learn” and is “far from perfect” as far as gender equity in the workforce, adding that the effort to improve “starts with awareness” and “talking about biases,” as well as “looking at policies that are [both] written and unwritten.”

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(From left) Susan Radin, Jan Hilgeman and Jennifer Bernell at CO’s “Women in Construction & Design” event. Photo: Aaron Adler

The morning’s third and final panel, “Creating the Next Generation of Women in Construction & Design,” featured Gilbane Building Company’s Brennan Gilbane Koch noting how the four previous generations of Gilbanes who led the family-led construction firm were almost entirely men—a state of affairs that has changed, given her current role as Gilbane’s business development manager. Anne Fletcher, a principal at architecture giant HOK, said that when she started in the industry she found herself not only doing “everything my male colleagues did,” but also “arrang[ing] shipping” and “answer[ing] the phone because I had the best phone voice.”

While Fletcher was recently named the new managing principal of HOK’s Los Angeles office, she also noted that she’s one of only six women on HOK’s 34-member board of directors—indicating the progress that remains to be seen in the industry.

Jennifer Bernell, executive vice president of development for Kushner Companies, discussed the challenges of balancing her role at Kushner with her responsibilities as the mother of four young boys—adding that she has been “fortunate” to have the support of her company, as far as maintaining a flexible schedule allowing her to meet the demands of being both an executive and a parent.

Susan Radin, a senior project manager at Turner Construction Company, cited progress as far as work-life balance expectations that are no longer exclusively faced by women—noting that in previous years, she “never heard from male colleagues that they had to [leave work early to] take care of their kids.”

Hines’ Hilgeman, who in addition to receiving the “Barrier-Breaker Award” also spoke on the panel, added that in her own career, she has stories about workplace harassment “not unlike what’s [been] in the news today.”

“We all have those stories, and we’re going to have them no matter what industry we’re in,” she said. “I think it’s a much broader, underlying cultural issue.”

Source: commercial

Colliers Senior Director Joins JEMB to Oversee DoBro Office Tower Development

JEMB Realty has snatched up Dennis Rauchet, a senior director in Colliers International’s project management group, Commercial Observer has learned.

Rauchet, a construction and development veteran of more than two decades, is now the senior director of development for JEMB. He is overseeing the ground-up, 500,000-square-foot office tower One Willoughby Square in Downtown Brooklyn and the redevelopment of the 1 million-square-foot, 26-story Herald Towers rental building in Midtown. He officially started his new post at JEMB on July 24.

Rauchet, 45, said he made the switch because he missed working on new developments rather than just consulting on deals at Colliers.

As a “third party you are always helping developers make decisions. You feel disconnected from the projects,” Rauchet told CO. “Part of my role here is not only to manage the two big projects that we have in New York, but to go out and run the numbers and find new deals.”

Rauchet said JEMB is planning to break ground on One Willoughby Square (which has an alternate address of 420 Albee Square) in early 2018. The developer recently completed an 87,000-square-foot lease with the city for a new 300-seat school, as CO recently reported. The building is still undergoing various design tweaks and JEMB is talking to a variety of potential tenants.

The other major project on Rauchet’s agenda is the upgrade of Herald Towers, a prewar residential building at 50 West 34th Street between Avenue of the Americas and Fifth Avenue. It includes modernization of the building’s systems, and addition of new penthouse apartments and amenities, such as lounges and outdoor space. JEMB is still planning the redesign and the project is expected to start in a year. Built in 1912 as a hotel, the Herald Towers was converted to a 690-unit rental in 1980. It has 112,000-square-foot of retail space.

“With his resume and experience, he will be an asset to our company and take charge of our ongoing One Willoughby development in Brooklyn as well as Herald Towers redevelopment,” Joseph Jerome, president of JEMB, said in a prepared statement.

Rauchet started working at Colliers in 2012; he consulted on the development of a variety of large-scale projects, including the 62-story condominium at 45 East 22nd Street, the 22-story condo at 55 West 21st Street and the renovation of the St. Regis New York hotel. Prior to that he was a vice president at Forest City New York (formerly Forest City Ratner Companies) from 2004 to 2012, where he worked on projects such as The New York Times Building at 620 Eighth Avenue between West 40th and West 41st Streets and the rental building at 80 Dekalb Avenue between Hudson Avenue and Rockwell Place in Downtown Brooklyn.

Before that he oversaw projects for Goldman Sachs’ real estate operations group for three years, and he also worked as a project manager for Skanska from 1995 to late 2001.

Rauchet, a father of three, who lives in Jersey City, N.J. received an MBA in finance from Pace University in 1998. He also has a certificate in real estate finance and investment from New York University and a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University in civil engineering, and he grew up in Flatbush, Brooklyn.

“It really is great to be a part of that,” Rauchet said. “I haven’t seen a new commercial building pop-up up [in Downtown Brooklyn] in decades. We are going to take it to the next level now and have some great commercial space to the area.”

Source: commercial

NY-Presbyterian Brooklyn Inks 26K SF at Greenland, Forest City’s Pacific Park

Source: commercial

A Big Chunk of Downtown Brooklyn—on Albee Square West—Is Finally Having Its Moment

Source: commercial