BOMA Facts

How long have you been a BOMA New York member and how did you first get involved with the Association?
I am a brand-new member and joined when I became Head of Property Management for JLL’s Tri-State region.

Pre-Covid19, what was your favorite BOMA New York event and why?
I love the Pinnacle Awards – an amazing opportunity to recognize the best of the best in NYC.  There is so much energy and excitement, and it’s a chance to connect and reconnect with many colleagues from throughout our careers.

You oversee a 15 million square-foot portfolio in the New York Tri-State region.   Do you have portfolio goals or is it building specific?
My goal is to grow both the portfolio and our relationships regionally and nationally.  From attracting tenants, providing services, or sharing best practices – I want to leverage all of our existing relationships to help one another grow our businesses.  My pet peeve is when we find ourselves reinventing the wheel, knowing that we have a plethora of resources at our fingertips.  We need to use our networks to help ourselves and each other.

You assumed your new role to lead the JLL New York Tri-State Property Management business in January of this year.  Two months in, and the world changed.  How is JLL leading during the pandemic?
JLL has been focused on providing support and resources for our clients and employees.  Immediately, JLL developed a national task force to address the constant influx of questions and to provide consistent messaging to leaders across the country.  Our corporate occupier and investor services businesses have now come together to offer plans, templates, and communications that dovetail with one another – depending on the client need.  It has been incredible to see the JLL machine at work.  We have been able to advise from all sides and give important insights into what tenants and landlords may be thinking.  This has been especially critical as we head into the next phase and reactivate our buildings and workplaces.

Your career has provided you with experience both as a landlord and a tenant.  Operationally, what is the biggest disconnect between the two and how to do you effectively bridge that gap?
This is a great question.  I have had the good fortune to return to Property Management after a long hiatus, during which the world has changed dramatically.  I was a Property Manager pre-9/11 and before we really talked about the workplace as an amenity to attract talent.  During my years in corporate occupier services, workplace strategy became the next big thing and was then elevated by human experience as a focus of both tenants and landlords.

It has been great to see both sides land on the same conclusion – the building should play a part in attracting and retaining talent.  The intrinsic value in our properties can be leveraged to benefit both landlord and tenant.

As a result, I have seen a transformation from “landlords and tenants as adversaries” to “landlords and tenants as partners” and it makes me EXTREMELY happy to see that dynamic continue to evolve.

How did everyone figure this out, you may ask?  The answer is – greater connections.  Technology has enabled us to communicate more quickly and sometimes (but not always!) more clearly with our colleagues.  Data is more readily available than it ever has ever been and we are able to draw conclusions from the data sets that spark new and innovative ideas.  I believe this confluence of factors has enabled both tenant and landlord to see the light and to appreciate they have a vested interest in the mutual success of the building.

You’ve managed hundreds of employees.  What’s your advice to someone starting out in the commercial real estate industry?
My #1 advice to anyone at any stage is to build and leverage your network.  People WANT to help.  And the more you talk to people, the more you can gain an understanding of what you are looking for in your career.  Hearing other people’s stories is fascinating and inspiring.  I also advise people to take charge of their career path – to not leave it in the hands of others.  People need to advocate for themselves and get what they want out of their careers.  Other people can never fully understand your hopes, dreams and capabilities the way you can.  Lastly, don’t be afraid to take calculated risks.  If an opportunity arises, do your due diligence and be sure the downside odds are lower than the upside.

When you are not working, what do you enjoy doing with your spare time?
I love spending time with my family, writing, walking to the beach, gardening and entertaining.  Every year I host a large gathering of 50+ people for Christmas Eve dinner and cook and bake everything myself with the help of my family.  That is my favorite event of the year.

What are you doing different during quarantine and have you started any new hobbies?
My desk at home faces a window and I decided to buy a (squirrel-proof) bird feeder to hang outside the window.  Each day I am greeted by dozens of purple finches, cardinals, blue jays, and house sparrows.  And the occasional squirrel.  I have several bird books and am learning to recognize their calls.  I’m still an amateur but it has been fun.  I have also been experimenting with cake recipes and have made about six different gourmet cakes for my family so far.

What is your favorite movie?
The Wedding Singer – love the ‘80’s!

What is your favorite book?
Native Son by Richard Wright.