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Close Up With Susan Hill


HFF senior managing director Susan Hill arranged one of the largest single-asset financing deals of 2013 and has taken home numerous awards. There must be a Herculean origin story? “Well, I needed a job.”


In 1987, Susan started as a receptionist for the firm with no business plan, but found herself growing and taking on more responsibilities as the company did. She was a single mother, which drove her to become a producer and bring home more money. Apart from an 18-month stint with NorthMarq, she’s been with HFF her entire career. (What she loves about HFF: Its team culture.) She’s responsible for originating debt and equity placements across all property types, and has completed over $6B in transactions. That big 2013 deal we mentioned was arranging $185M for the IDS Center in Minnesota.


Susan puts a heavy emphasis on helping other women in real estate (and outside of it—she has a daughter and two granddaughters, with whom she’s very close). Last year, she served as CREW Network’s national prez, and she was recognized as a woman of influence by Real Estate Forum. She advises women entering the industry that you can’t wait to be recognized—women often think their actions will speak loudly enough for recognition, but Susan says they need to take their own seat at the table and make themselves heard. (Photoboming above: Danny Miller’s dog.)


Outside of work, Susan is a big fisherwoman. Above, she’s shows off an award-winning 35-inch redfish. In fact, she’s going on a fishing trip to New Orleans today with some girlfriends. After that, she’s looking forward to working with a plethora of new investors this year; all sorts of foreign and domestic groups have major allocations for Houston now that we’re considered a gateway market.