Yesterday with REIA and Rockin' Women
Yesterday seemed like a bad day to get out of bed: unseasonably cold weather, cloudy skies, and the loss of our last remaining playoff team. But four great events changed our mood, starting with a REIA breakfast at Maggiano's.
We kicked things off snapping Meltzer, Purtill & Stelle LLC's Joy Goldman, @properties Ralph Cram, Capmark's John Oharenko, and The Shaw Co.'s William King, out to hear what everyone else is up to. John says his company has spent much of its recent time on multi-family financing.
Speakers included the Atlas Group's Joel Schneider and BPG's Brant Glomb (along with Inland Mortgage Corp's John Chung, JDI Realty's Rob Weil, and Aries Capital's Neil Freeman), discussing creative financing, such as Joel's work with smaller funds for first-time owner-occupants. John is dealing with CMBS funds(gasp!), although they're different than they used to be, with just a 40 percent advance at six to seven percent interest.
Cat calls reversed directions last night at the House of Blues as the Federation of Women Contractors hollered at industry band Liquidated Damages during Women Rock III. Above: John Buck Co's Mike Moravek (sax) and Leopardo's Mark Fenton (vocals), Dan Ulbricht, and Mike LeMire take to the stage. K.R. Miller's band The Contractors and Aldridge Electric's Jaked also played.
Weible and Cahill's Leigh Ann Francis, Melissa Daich, and Kim Holmes joined Aldridge Electric's Gina Walsh for the evening of fun. Melissa said that Weible and Cahill's construction insurance division was doing great despite the poor economy. Though when we prodded for success tips, the music conveniently was too loud. (Next concert will have to be classical violin.)
If rockin' too hard leaves you bereft of a job or housing (hey, stranger things have happened) these ladies can help. Last night, recent law school grad Ruth Siegler, IHDA's Jennifer Chan, and John Marshall Law School's Heather Harper led a career dev series for Women in Planning + Development's, discussing low income housing, as well as where Ruth might be able to find a job now that she's studying for the Illinois Bar Exam. Since housing is still being funded by the gov't, Jennifer says she's doing well.
A twist of luck landed us unnaturally close to the speakers table: Village of University Park's Kim Porter, Applegate & Thorne-Thomsen's Nicole Jackson, and Golub's Teresa Mancuso shared their own career development stories for female college grads or those looking for a career change. "You have to find a way to make a way out of no way," said Teresa, who went from managing one building for John Buck to managing Golub's domestic portfolio. The key, she said, was working hard and proving yourself.
Unable to hold ourselves to just three events, we hit the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce's Green Symposium, featuring Nelson's Lois Vitt Sale, DLA Piper's Patrick Thompson, Howard Ecker + Co's Howard Ecker, and Blue Star Energy Service's Aaron Rasty. Green buildings have proven benefits to employees if maintained properly, Howard says. For example, Lois reports that call center employees who sit by a window, a common practice in green spaces, are 6% more successful than those who don't. (We await the report that says we're 6% more successful when sitting by a plate of donuts.)