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Chicago's 2023 Women Leading Real Estate Say City Will Emerge Stronger After Rebuilding Year

Against the backdrop of one of real estate's rockiest years in recent memory, this year’s Bisnow’s Chicago Women Leading Real Estate event will bring together women from some of the biggest players in the city’s commercial real estate scene at a time their leadership means more than ever.

“Undoubtedly, 2023 will continue to be challenging for the CRE industry," said Hope Tate, executive vice president and regional operations manager for JLL, and one of this year's 25 honorees. "We are all feeling the impact of this very tough economic climate."

This year's event honors game-changers and deal-makers in Windy City CRE, gathering some of the industry's most inspiring, groundbreaking and effective female leaders at a March 30 event.

The celebration comes at a time of significant challenge for the industry, given higher interest rates, a weaker economy and, just this week, the threat of banking instability. But the city's women leaders believe Chicago will endure and end the year stronger than ever.

“While it is true that the commercial real estate industry has been facing significant challenges in 2023, Chicago's community investors have what it takes to overcome these obstacles and emerge even stronger in the long run," said Jessica Sivels, director of education and community engagement at Community Investment Corp., pointing to Chicago's strong collaborative culture and spirit of innovation.

“I view this time period as a learning opportunity," Savills Managing Director Isabel Preskill Schwartz said. "I predict that organizations that think strategically about their workplace and seize today's tenant-favorable market will experience greater productivity [and] employee engagement and secure the most flexible and economically competitive real estate solution in the foreseeable future. Fortune favors the bold."

Honorees at Bisnow's event later this month will be recognized in six categories: role model, leader of the year, deal-maker of the year, innovator of the year, rising star and unsung hero. In addition to recognizing their achievements, the event will offer attendees education, networking and resources for professional development.

Bisnow enlisted a steering committee to help determine this year's cohort of CRE leaders, profiled below. Its members are: Tammy Kelly, EQT Exeter managing director and head of U.S. Multifamily Asset Management; Collete English Dixon, executive director of the Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate at Roosevelt UniversityGinna Ryan, Mauge principal and chief operating officer; and Alissa AdlerColliers senior vice president.

Shannon Richardson, managing director, national investor accounts team, at JLL, and Amy Sands, senior managing director at JLL, will also be honored at the event.

— Alexandria Jacobson

March 16, 2023
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP Co-Chair Kathryn Kovitz Arnold +
WBS Equities CEO and Founder Wendy Berger +
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP Partner Liz Butler +
Urban ReSOLVE Managing Director Erin Lavin Cabonargi +
VennPoint Real Estate Partner Kellie DeVilbiss +
Calamos Real Estate Vice President Heidi DeVries +
Partner Engineering & Science Inc. National Account Manager Amanda Horan +
Milhouse Development Principal and Chief Regional Officer Melanie Jefferies +
Stream Realty Partners Executive Vice President Wendy Katz +
Tishman Speyer Managing Director of Leasing Ellen May +
Slate Asset Management Vice President Brooke McElhone +
Sterling Bay Principal and Director of Life Sciences Suzet McKinney +
Cushman & Wakefield Senior Associate Presley Norby +
Tishman Speyer Senior Associate Olivia Parker +
Savills Managing Director Isabel Preskill Schwartz +
Colliers International Executive Vice President Suzanne Serino +
Community Investment Corp. Director of Education & Community Engagement Jessica Sivels +
Farpoint Development Founding Principal Regina Stilp +
Easy Tax Appeals President and Managing Attorney Lauren D.W. Tatar +
JLL Executive Vice President, Regional Operations Manager Hope Tate +
Essex Realty Group Principal and Managing Director Kate Varde +
Lulafit Founder and CEO Colleen Werner +
Community Investment Corp. CEO Stacie Young +