American Realty Advisors


Press Release, September 20, 2021

Tomorrow's Real Estate Leaders Wins Trailblazer Award, Announces Featured Speaker

  • Tomorrow’s Real Estate Leaders is a diversity, equity, and inclusion program that offers college students an opportunity to explore careers in the commercial real estate industry. The program’s second session will be held virtually Nov. 5-7, 2021.

Verdical Group has honored American Realty Advisors with a Trailblazer Award for its Tomorrow’s Real Estate Leaders program. Trailblazer Awards celebrate leaders who are creating paths for others to follow through their work in climate, carbon, energy, water, waste, transit, and equity.

The award was presented at Verdical’s Net Zero Conference in Los Angeles on September 16. ARA’s Chairman and CEO Stanley Iezman accepted the award virtually on behalf of the firm.

“We are committed to making investments that are sustainable and resilient, and we recognize we cannot achieve this goal without diversity of people and ideas in our workforce and leadership,” Mr. Iezman said in his video acceptance speech. “We hope that programs like the Tomorrow’s Real Estate Leaders initiative continue to move the needle as we work to bring more diverse perspectives into our industry.”

Previous Trailblazer award winners include programs and representatives from Google, Inc., International WELL Building Institute, and the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, among others. 

Tomorrow’s Real Estate Leaders began in 2021 under the leadership of Mr. Iezman with support from the entire ARA executive team. The program is led by Chris Smith, Assistant Vice President of Asset Management, and is supported by a team of human resources, ESG+R, and marketing professionals. The firm is currently accepting applications from qualified students for its second program, set to take place in November.

The program will feature educational sessions from ARA professionals and industry partners, including a keynote session led by Malcolm Johnson, CEO of Langdon Park Capital. Langdon Park Capital is a real estate investment management firm that focuses on ethical investment and opportunistic development in often overlooked communities.

Mr. Johnson will offer insight into his journey through the real estate world as a person of color and how it shaped his belief that impact investing can be a source for real change.

“I’m a huge supporter of what Malcolm is doing at Langdon Park,” Mr. Iezman said. “His mission-driven strategies will be instrumental in helping change the trajectory of underserved communities. These investments can be both principled and profitable.”

The first Tomorrow’s Real Estate Leaders program was held in March 2021 and had over 100 applicants with 20 students selected to participate. Students represented universities and colleges across the country, including Brown, Harvard, Columbia, Howard, University of Southern California, Emory, Cornell, and Morehouse, among others.

The program featured two keynote speakers, Dr. Raphael Bostic, 15th President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, and Michael Banner, President and CEO of the Los Angeles LDC, Inc., as well as more than 14 workshops and learning sessions, a virtual asset tour, and a case study competition.

Sophia Lopez, a spring 2021 program participant and economics major at Trinity College, said that, after participating in the program, she has decided to pursue a career in commercial real estate.  

“I came into the program with little knowledge of the industry or the opportunities available, and now I’m fully committed to pursuing a career in commercial real estate investment,” she said. “I’ve continued friendships with many of the program participants and am currently trying to start a real estate club at Trinity.”

Mr. Smith said he’s excited about the future of the program.

“This initiative was designed to promote the power of a multicultural workforce and to create opportunities in institutional real estate investment management for students of all backgrounds,” he said.  

Tomorrow’s Real Estate Leaders is currently accepting applications from students who identify as Black or African American, Latinx or Hispanic, Asian, Pacific Islander, or the indigenous peoples of the Americas, including Native Americans and Alaskan Natives.

Students interested in the fall program can apply hereThe application deadline is October 1, 2021.

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