Who's Teaching Tomorrow's Leaders?
To keep NYC commercial real estate's boom going, the industry needs a succession plan. That's where college professors, the trainers and motivators of tomorrow's leaders, come in. Bisnow presents NYU School of Professional Studies Schack Institute of Real Estate's most eager and engaging personalities:
Title: Clinical associate professor and MSRED chair.
What he teaches: Land Use and Environmental Regulation, Capstone, Development Process, and Green Buildings and Sustainability.
How long he’s been a Schack prof: Six years.
His own education: B.A. in urban studies from CUNY and master’s in urban planning from NYU.
What LinkedIn says: Full-time at Schack; previously a developer for 20 years and earlier a city planner; now he does research like "Waterfront Brownfields" report for NAIOP Research Foundation, "New York State Brownfields Cleanup Program" for NYC Brownfield Partnership, and "Brownfields in China."
Extracurriculars: Occasional projects for non-profits and government, including EPA; last month chaired ULI technical advisory panel on Bronx’s University Heights.
Dream class: The Literature of Real Estate, about books and movies like Tom Wolfe’s A Man in Full, David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross, and Robert Caro’s The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York.
Biggest lesson: “Your reputation for expertise and integrity really matters.”
Memorable moment: One class, 12 students, four weddings, and two births. “It was a busy semester.”
What he wanted to be when he grew up: As a Stuyvesant High student, he noticed the Hilton and CBS’s Black Rock rising at Sixth and 52nd and asked the librarian for a book on it; she gave him one on city planning. “I’m glad I became a planner, but it took me 20 years to figure out that she gave me the wrong book. It should have been about corporate real estate.”
What his students don’t know about him: Was pretty good 3rd baseman, still decent tennis player (age adjusted), “and a total duffer.”
Mary Ann Hallenborg
Title: Clinical assistant professor of real estate and B.S. in Real Estate chair.
Photo: With students on the High Line, one of her favorite teaching spots.
What she teaches: Real Estate Principles, Real Estate Law, and Commercial Lease Analysis.
How long she’s been a Schack prof: Adjunct in ’02, practicing law by day and teaching landlord-tenant law to brokers one night a week—“the best part of every week.”
Her tie to Schack: Full-time at NYU; “lucky enough to be part of the roll-out team” for the undergrad program, which launched last year.
Her own education: B.S. in psychology from Rutgers and law degree from St. John’s.
Why she teaches: After long list of mentors taught her about development, construction, management, and law, “it’s time to give back.”
Biggest lesson: Take triple-bottom-line approach to dealmaking and projects. Compelling business case is essential, but “it’s equally important to think through the longer-term environmental and social impacts.”
Memorable moment: When a confused or indifferent student suddenly gets it. “I can tell by their eyes and enthusiasm that they’ve made a valuable connection between an abstract theory and something tangible.”
What she wanted to be when she grew up: Teacher; just didn’t realize she’d need to be real estate exec and lawyer first.
What her students don’t know about her: Likes corny jokes and thus laughs out loud when reading Bisnow on her phone (her words, not ours!).
Title: Clinical professor.
What she teaches: Infrastructure and Urban Development; Construction Management concentration’s Capstone, Applied Project: Planning, Control and Completion Strategies; A Regulatory Roadmap seminar.
How long she’s been a Schack prof: Two years full-time; adjunct for 10 years before that.
Her own education: B.A. from Oregon’s Linfield College and master’s in architecture from Seattle’s University of Washington.
Day job: President and CEO of capital program management and consulting firm The Lancaster Group.
Biggest lesson: Think outside the box and communicate your passions.
Memorable moment: On prep call for “To LEED or Not to LEED" webinar, another speaker, calling in from Seattle, said, “Hi, Professor.” It was Jason Twill, one of her first students, who by then was heading up Vulcan’s sustainability practice. Now he lives in Australia and is head of sustainability for Lend Lease.
What she wanted to be when she grew up: Artist.
What her students don’t know about her: Among her fabulous animal imitations, hamster is her best. “This has not yet come in handy in the real estate field.”
Title: Clinical associate professor and Construction Management department chair.
What he teaches: Methods and Technology, Understanding Drawing Plans and Cost Estimating seminar, Quality Control and Evaluation of Buildings seminar.
Photo: With Melanie Fordin and the Leaning Tower of Pisa (prime fodder for for his Quality Control seminar).
How long he’s been teaching: Over 10 years.
His own education: B.S. in Civil Engineering from Lafayette College and M.S. in Civil Engineering from NYU.
Day job: Full-time Schack, arbitrator (American Arbitration Association), and construction consulting practice.
Why he teaches: Give back to the younger generation after 50 years in construction industry.
Dream class: Wrote the book on it after realizing text book for his Construction Process class didn't cover all topics construction managers should learn. Check out McGraw-Hill's Urban Construction Project Management by Richard and colleague John Eschemuller.
Biggest lesson: Knowledge is power. “The more you learn, the better you’ll be at dealing and resolving problems on the job site.”
Memorable moment: Known for using props in lectures, he used a motorized miniature crane to demonstrate job-site logistics. One student was so impressed he took pictures to email his undergrad profs.
What he wanted to be when he grew up: Civil engineer.
What his students don’t know about him: Rides a motorcycle with a sidecar.
Title: Clinical professor.
What he teaches: Real Estate Capital Markets and REIT Securities Analysis and co-teaches Finance & Investment Capstone.
Rough start: His first class, fall ’03’s Real Estate Finance, was not his best. “Teaching 20-plus hungry minds is much, much harder than you might think!”
His own education: Bachelor’s in both biology and economics with minor in accounting from University of California at Riverside and MSRE from NYU.
Day job: Full-time Schack and Oberon Securities managing director and real estate investment banking co-head.
Why he teaches: The canned “because it’s rewarding” response rings true for him as a Schack grad himself; also huge networking opportunity, as his students will be industry leaders “sooner than you realize.”
Dream class: Earlier this year helped reshape Capstone course. Students still simulate process of buying and capitalizing a building, but now there are two more investment tracks: structuring corporate finance/M&A transaction and conducting deep-diver investment review of complex credit opportunity.
Biggest lesson: Think critically. “It’s not easy to evaluate your work critically, to question your rationale, to evaluate the weaknesses in a pro forma’s assumption or how a business plan could fail, but not doing so can result in disastrous results down the road.”
What he wanted to be when he grew up: “I thought Magnum P.I. had a pretty good life [but] I can’t grow that good of a mustache."
First job: Value-add group buying RTC assets in LA; fascinated with group’s ability to change nature of a fixed object, a building.
What his students don’t know about him: He’s an endurance mountain bike racer.
Photo: Weekend before last after “how many loops can you do in six hours” race near Killington, Vt.
Title: Clinical assistant professor in Sustainable Real Estate Development program and director of Center for the Sustainable Built Environment
What he teaches: Green Building and Sustainable Development, as well as Sustainable Real Estate Development Capstone; will teach course debuting in spring ’15, now unofficially named Contracting and Documentation for Sustainability.
How long he’s been a Schack prof: Two years but has taught—“or maybe I should say proselytized”—financial value of energy efficiency and climate stewardship in commercial real estate since ’98.
His own education: Hobart undergrad and Yale grad; also studied at Rice University.
Biggest lesson for students: “They're part of the solution.”
Memorable moment: First day of teaching when he put his hand on classroom doorknob and realized, "Stuart, you can't just throw the students into the deep end of the pool. You need to teach them how to swim."
What he wanted to be when he grew up: “I always loved the urban experience and understood it to be the product of architects and real estate professionals good, bad, and indifferent… All I knew is that I wanted to engage that environment.”
Dr. Patrice Derrington
Title: Clinical associate professor in Global Real Estate Development program.
Photo: She’s fourth from the right with students, alumni, and administrators on last May’s study trip to Warsaw and Krakow to learn about Polish and other Eastern Europe markets. They met with Kulczyk Silverstein Properties (JV of Kulczyk Real Estate Holdings and Silverstein Properties), Skanska, The Blackstone Group, JLL, and Knight Frank.
What she teaches: The introductory course—Real Estate Finance—and the final pre-graduation course—Global Development Capstone, plus Comparative International Real Estate elective.
Her own education: UC Berkeley undergrad and Harvard grad.
How long she’s been a Schack prof: Full-time Schack for two years; previously adjunct.
Biggest lesson: Real estate is exciting, challenging, and ever changing but requires diligence, tenacity, and passion.