Hines’ Tommy Craig Steps Down From Co-Head of NYC Office

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Tommy Craig, the co-head of Hines’ New York office, stepped down from his post on Jan. 1 after 40 years at the company, Commercial Observer has learned.

Craig, who was Hines’ first New York City employee, transitioned into a senior managing director role, and Jason Alderman, a senior managing director at Hines and its New York office co-lead since 2021, has taken over as the sole city head of Hines’ New York office, according to Hines.

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“It has been a supreme privilege to be a part of the Hines New York office for the last 41 years, including 26 years of running the office, working hard on work worth doing, and contributing to the built environment in New York City with so many wonderful projects,” Craig said. 

Craig will continue to advise Hines on its East Coast projects, according to Hines.

It’s safe to say that Alderman has some pretty big shoes to fill. Craig was hired by Hines in 1982 to help with the Houston-based developer’s first New York City project, the iconic Lipstick Building. He took the helm of the Gotham office in 1996.

Since then, Craig helped turn Hines into a major player in the city, managing the firm’s 30 million square feet of property, spearheading Hines’ acquisition of a 1.4 percent stake in One Vanderbilt and overseeing its $600 million sale of 7 Bryant Park to the Bank of China in 2018.

“I have a deep passion for what I do; and the aspects that I think about being a real estate developer in a city like New York is the work you do becomes tangible,” Craig told CO in 2020 about his long tenure at Hines. “I want to be modest about this, but to my wife and kids [two daughters and a son] I point the buildings out to them. I’m not sure anybody else gets to do that.”

Alderman joined Hines in 1999 as an analyst in the firm’s Beijing and Boston offices, before departing in 2012 to work at Norges Bank Investment Management and Australian real estate firm Lendlease. He returned to Hines in 2021 to shadow Craig before taking his post. 

He plans to invest in multifamily, industrial and office-to-residential conversions in the city, if the price is right.

“Like many other groups, we’ve been working on either major repositioning opportunities or conversion opportunities from office to residential,” Alderman said. “But we just haven’t found a path to logical pricing with sellers.”

He also wants Hines to lean further into multifamily investments in Connecticut and New York state — like its 246-unit luxury apartment complex in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y. — as residential continues to outperform the struggling office market

Craig’s departure isn’t the only Hines shakeup in leadership positions this year. Last week, the firm picked Steve Luthman to lead its Midwest, Southeast and Canadian regions, and chose Syl Apps to control the South America office.

Its Washington, D.C., head Chuck Watters stepped down to be replaced by Andrew McGeorge, while Sean Sacks will take over Boston lead David Perry‘s post.

From left to right, Hines' Jason Alderman, Andrew McGeorge and Sean Sacks.
From left to right, Hines’ Jason Alderman, Andrew McGeorge and Sean Sacks. Photo: Bruce Byers/Hines

McGeorge said he plans to continue Hines’ existing projects — like its planned 323-unit luxury development at The Parks at Walter Reed — and buying new sites when possible amid the high cost of financing. He joined Hines in 2020 after managing multifamily landlord Fairfield Residential’s mid-Atlantic properties and Monday Properties’ developments.

“We’ve raised a tremendous amount of discretionary funds, so we have more dry powder than we’ve ever had going into a recessionary period,” McGeorge said. “We believe that will allow us to strategically transact on some acquisitions when our competitors may not be able to.”

Sacks, who joined Hines’ Boston office in 2014 after eight years at developer the New Boston Fund, said he’s looking forward to working on Hines’ ambitious plan to build a 51-story, mixed-use tower at the center of Boston’s South Station Transportation Center, which is expected to be completed in 2025.

“I’m enthusiastic about our robust pipeline, specifically our city-defining project, South Station, and our continued focus on projects that set new standards for ESG and create the highest quality properties to live, work, shop and play,” Sacks said in a statement.

Alderman, McGeorge and Sacks will serve under Sarah Hawkins, Hines’ CEO for the east region.

Celia Young can be reached at cyoung@commercialobserver.com.