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November 16, 2020

REITs Remain Overwhelmingly White As Diversity Push Falls Short

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This piece is the first in a series of articles examining the racial diversity of the boards and executive leadership of the biggest companies in commercial real estate. To read the introductory editor’s note for this series, click here. Stay tuned for the next installments on CRE brokerage and the finance industry.

The industry’s largest real estate investment trusts control hundreds of billions of dollars in real estate and employ tens of thousands of people, but they have failed to diversify their executive ranks.  

The nation’s reckoning on race this year has led many REITs to release statements about the need to address systemic inequalities, and the real estate giants will need to start by pushing for racial equality at their own companies. A Bisnow analysis of 26 of the largest REITs shows the overwhelming majority of their top executives and board members are White.  

REITs Remain Overwhelmingly White As Diversity Push Falls Short

Bisnow’s analysis comprised the 26 commercial real estate-focused REITs that are part of the S&P 500, showing a cross section of the nation’s largest REITs across all major property sectors. These 26 companies collectively employ more than 69,000 people and bring in over $66B in annual revenue.Across the 26 REITs, there…

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At CRE's Biggest Companies, Talk About Diversity Is Rarely Followed By Action

Hundreds of billions of dollars flow through commercial real estate every year, but the people who control the vast majority of that wealth are White.

This has been a truism since the dawn of the modern commercial real estate era in the 1980s. But as the nation’s pension funds, insurance companies, university endowments and the wealthiest among us pump more and more of their money into commercial real estate, a rigorous accounting of the makeup of the people who control that capital has never been done.

At CRE's Biggest Companies, Talk About Diversity Is Rarely Followed By Action

Soon after the killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, Bisnow wrote an open letter to the industry promising that “our newsroom will be digging even deeper to hold this industry accountable to its collective desire to be a more diverse and…

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