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The Lobby

Industry Vet Corey Abdo Joins Coldwell Banker Commercial Alliance

Corey Abdo

Veteran Manhattan broker Corey Abdo has joined Coldwell Banker Commercial Alliance as an executive managing director of leasing and sales in its New York City offices, Commercial Observer has learned.

Mr. Abdo, who has negotiated more than two million square-feet of real estate transactions over a career spanning 25 years, will continue to provide both owner representation and tenant advisory services to clients throughout the Metropolitan area. Read More

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Ron Solarz Returns to Eastern Consolidated

Ron Solarz

Investment sales broker Ron Solarz has rejoined Eastern Consolidated as an executive managing director and principal, Commercial Observer has learned. The industry veteran spent close to 17 years at Eastern Consolidated before joining Brookfield Financial in 2011.

“I’m sure I’m going to hit the ground running and it’s going to be a good experience because it’s comfortable,” said Mr. Solarz, who starts work at Eastern Consolidated today. Read More

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Michael Schlein Appointed as Chairman of NYCEDC Board

Michael Schlein. (Credit: Accion)

Mayor Bill de Blasio has appointed Michael Schlein as chairman of the board of directors of the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

Mr. Schlein, a veteran of the financial services industry, currently serves as president and chief executive of Accion, a nonprofit microfinance firm. Previously, Mr. Schlein worked as president of International Franchise Management at Citigroup. Prior to Citigroup, Mr. Schlein gained public service experience as chief of staff of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and served in economic development roles under Mayors Ed Koch and David Dinkins. He is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Read More

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C&W Names Patrick Dugan as Director of Brokerage, NYC

Patrick Dugan

Former CBRE broker Patrick Dugan has joined Cushman & Wakefield as Director of Brokerage, New York City offices, Commercial Observer has learned.

“Patrick Dugan has developed a well-deserved reputation in the brokerage world as a first-class deal closer whose top priority is service to clients,” said Ron Lo Russo, president, New York Tri-State region, in a statement. “We’re all excited about his arrival, and we have high expectations about the valuable role he’ll be playing as part of the Cushman & Wakefield management team.” Read More

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CompStak Eyes Expansion, Hires Phillips from NGKF [Updated]


With a goal to expand into 12 additional markets this year, real estate startup CompStak has hired Andrew Phillips, formerly of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, as director of enterprise sales.

Mr. Phillips, who served as managing director with NGKF Capital Markets, has been tasked with expanding CompStak’s presence within the commercial real estate finance and investment communities. Read More

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Marty Burger Officially Takes Over as CEO of Silverstein Properties

Marty Burger

Marty Burger has been appointed as chief executive of Silverstein Properties, the company announced today, taking over sole ownership of the title he previously shared with Larry Silverstein.

Mr. Burger, who held the title of co-chief executive for two years during a period of transition, will take over responsibility of the real estate company’s day-to-day operations. A veteran of the industry, the 48-year-old first joined Silverstein Properties in 2010 after stints with Goldman Sachs, Blackstone, Related and Artisan Real Estate Ventures, a firm he founded. Read More

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Former Thor, RFR Exec Jumps to Handler


Handler Real Estate Organization has named Richard Farley executive vice president and chief operating officer of the firm’s brokerage division, The Commercial Observer has learned.

Mr. Farley will be charged with spearheading Handler’s third-party brokerage efforts, on which the firm has placed increased emphasis.

Read More

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Related Hires CBRE’s Stephen Winter


On the heels of his inclusion in The Commercial Observer’s30 Under 30” list last month, CBRE’s Stephen Winter is bouncing over to Related Companies as its new vice president of commercial leasing, overseeing leasing efforts at Hudson Yards.

Until now a rising star at CBRE – in 2012, the Real Estate Board of New Read More

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JLL Snags Philip Palmer from CBRE to Head NYC Brokerage

Philip Palmer

Jones Lang LaSalle has hired Philip Palmer as an executive managing director overseeing the New York City office’s brokerage operation, The Commercial Observer has learned.

Mr. Palmer, 50, will supervise more than 100 brokers in the “significantly expanding” operation. He comes to JLL after four years at CBRE, where he was the managing director of the Midtown brokerage division. He’ll report to New York tri-state region President Peter Riguardi, Chief Operating Officer Stephen Schlegel and Director of Business Development Raymond Quartararo. His responsibilities at JLL will include managing daily operations, implementing growth strategies and recruiting new hires. Read More

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HFF Announces Resignation of John Pelusi

Mr. Pelusi

Just a day after announcing a promotion in the company’s New York office, Pittsburgh-based HFF today said John Pelusi has resigned as chief executive officer and vice chairman of the company effective April 1, 2014.

Mr. Pelusi, a founding member of the real estate firm, will also vacate his position as managing member of operating partnerships, according to the company’s announcement.

Read More

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Glenn Rufrano Named Chairman, CEO at O’Connor Capital Partners

Glenn Rufrano

Nearly six months after Cushman & Wakefield announced he would depart at as the real estate company’s chief executive officer, Glenn Rufrano has landed on his feet.

O’Connor Capital Partners, a real estate investment, development and management firm, announced today that Mr. Rufrano would return to the company as chairman and chief executive. Mr. Rufrano had previously enjoyed a 17-year spell with O’Connor, beginning in 1983. Read More