Leadership

Regional Leaders

Northern California

Meris Ota (MS '04)

Vice President

Project Management Advisors

Meris Ota (MS '04)

Vice President

Project Management Advisors

Meris is a versatile and effective entitlement and development manager who excels in navigating complex projects by listening, strategizing, motivating, and executing. With over 15 years of experience, she leads project teams through the entire development process, from initial analysis, entitlements, consultant selection, design, and permitting, through construction and occupancy. Meris is motivated by identifying and implementing synergistic opportunities to optimize project outcomes. In 2018, Meris was honored as a "40 Under 40" recipient by the San Francisco Business Journal.

Hady Abou Jaoude (MS '15)

Associate

Hines

Hady Abou Jaoude (MS '15)

Associate

Hines

Maya Theuer ('16)

Development Manager

L37 Partners

Maya Theuer ('16)

Development Manager

L37 Partners

Maya manages 950 Market, a marquee hotel and condo development in San Francsico as well as 770 Woolsey, a single family home PUD in San Francsico, and co-manages an 800-unit entitlement in South San Francisco. Prior to L37, she managed live/work conversions in Oakland and worked with a small private equity group completing PDR, mixed-use, and industrial retrofits. She also sources and manages personal investment and development projects separate of her day job. Maya is active in all aspects of the development process from acquisition and underwriting to construction and lease-up.

Evelyn Weis (MBA '18)

Associate

Calzada Capital Partners

Evelyn Weis (MBA '18)

Associate

Calzada Capital Partners

Evelyn is an Associate at Calzada Capital Partners, a Real Estate Private Equity firm that invests across Real Estate sectors with a focus on the United States and Latin America. Prior to Calzada, Evelyn worked in Revenue Management for multi-family REITs BRE and Essex. Evelyn received an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and graduated magna cum laude from Davidson College. 3.3.20

Southern California

Jonathan Cheng ('00, MBA '07)

CEO

Tourmaline Capital

Jonathan Cheng ('00, MBA '07)

CEO

Tourmaline Capital

Jonathan Cheng is the CEO of Tourmaline Capital, a real estate investment firm focused on acquiring and operating retail properties across the West Coast. Before starting Tourmaline Capital in 2011, Jonathan was responsible for acquisitions at Merlone Geier Partners, which is an investment company focused on purchasing and redeveloping retail and mixed-use real estate on the West Coast. Prior to Merlone Geier Partners, Jonathan was an Associate at Cruzan Monroe, a real estate investment firm that targets office and industrial acquisitions and developments in Southern California. He also was previously a financial analyst in the investment bank division of JPMorgan. Jonathan is on the Board of Directors of Sunwest Bank and holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Loryn Dunn Arkow (JD '95)

Partner

Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP

Loryn Dunn Arkow (JD '95)

Partner

Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP

Loryn Dunn Arkow is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP. A member of the Real Estate Practice Group, Ms. Arkow has handled a broad range of acquisition, disposition and development transactions; joint ventures, lending and other finance transactions; recapitalizations and workouts. She has represented a diversity of clients, including large public pension funds, pension fund advisors, private equity funds and other investors, lenders, developers and sponsors in a variety of sectors, including multifamily, office, studio, industrial, retail, and medical and mixed-use projects. Ms. Arkow has particular expertise in structuring complex transactions and entities and also in finding creative solutions to get deals done. Ms. Arkow received her JD from Stanford Law School and her undergraduate degree from Harvard College. She is active in a number of charities, serves as a Director and a Southern California leader of SPIRE, and is the co-chair of the ULI Los Angeles Leadership Council.

Jason Lopata ('17)

Master of Real Estate Development Student

USC

Jason Lopata ('17)

Master of Real Estate Development Student

USC

Jason is a Master of Real Estate Development (MRED) student at USC. Prior to beginning this program, Jason worked as a land use consultant with Craig Lawson & Co., LLC, representing development projects as they sought entitlements in the City of Los Angeles. His primary responsibilities included performing zoning research, formulating entitlement strategies, and managing project team efforts toward securing project entitlements. Jason also writes articles evaluating LA’s evolving real estate landscape on the site Urbanize.LA. He serves as a Southern California Regional Director for SPIRE, he is a board member of the Urban Land Institute’s (ULI) Young Leaders Group, and he is a member of ULI LA’s Housing Council. Jason earned a Bachelor’s Degree in History from Stanford University in 2017, authoring his senior thesis on Downtown LA’s revival over the past 20 years. While at Stanford, Jason founded and led the student real estate group associated with SPIRE.

Chicago

Shallene Gross ('06, MBA '10)

Managing Director, Investments

Equity Group Investments

Shallene Gross ('06, MBA '10)

Managing Director, Investments

Equity Group Investments

Shallene Gross serves as a Managing Director at Equity Group Investments ('EGI'), a private investment firm based in Chicago. Shallene evaluates new investment opportunities and manages existing assets. Prior to rejoining EGI in 2020, she served as a Senior Vice President Investments at Equity Commonwealth, a commercial office REIT (NYSE: EQC), where she helped form the new management team that took responsibility for CommonWealth REIT (now EQC) in 2014. Earlier in her career, she was a member of the investment teams at EGI, Dune Real Estate Partners, and Walton Street Capital, where she focused on opportunistic investing across a variety of real estate sectors. Her experience includes roles in acquisitions, restructurings, asset management and fundraising. In addition to the management takeover and repositioning of EQC, she has worked on more than $1 billion in acquisitions and over $2.5 billion in refinancings and dispositions. Shallene holds an MBA from Stanford University's Graduate School of Business and graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a BA in Economics with Distinction from Stanford University.

William Griffiths (MBA '04)

Senior Vice President - Capital Markets

Equity Commonwealth

William Griffiths (MBA '04)

Senior Vice President - Capital Markets

Equity Commonwealth

William H. Griffiths is the Senior Vice President – Capital Markets at Equity Commonwealth, where he is responsible primarily for the company’s debt and equity financing. Mr. Griffiths previously served in a similar role as part of the asset management and investment teams at EQX Real Estate Partners and Equity Group Investments since January 2014. Prior to joining EGI, Mr. Griffiths had similar responsibilities for Helix Funds, where he financed over $2.2 billion in real estate assets and participated in the acquisition, management and disposition of those assets. Prior to joining Helix Funds, Mr. Griffiths worked at Equity Office Properties Trust, where he served as Director of Business Development and was actively involved in more than $12 billion of investment activity that included Equity Office’s mergers with Cornerstone and Spieker, as well as various preferred stock investments in service companies. Earlier in his career, Mr. Griffiths was an Associate in the Real Estate Investment Banking group at J.P. Morgan in New York, where he was involved in a wide variety of M&A, equity and debt financing, and asset sale assignments. Mr. Griffiths holds an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business and BA from Northwestern University. 8.24.17

Christian Lane ('93)

Vice President and Senior Division Underwriting Counsel

First American Title

Christian Lane ('93)

Vice President and Senior Division Underwriting Counsel

First American Title

Christian Lane has been National Counsel at First American Title Insurance Company since April 2007. Prior to First American, he served as an Associate in the real estate practice at Burke, Warren, MacKay & Serritella, P.C. from 2005 to 2007. He served as an Associate in the real estate practice at Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP from 2004 to 2005. He served as an Associate in the real estate practice and the restructuring practice with Kirkland & Ellis from 1999 to 2004. He served as the law clerk to the Honorable Robert D. Martin, Chief Bankruptcy Judge for the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Wisconsin from 1998-1999. Mr. Lane holds an AB in Urban Studies from Stanford University and a JD from the University of Minnesota School of Law.

Richard Klawiter (JD '90)

Partner

DLA Piper LLP (US)

Richard Klawiter (JD '90)

Partner

DLA Piper LLP (US)

Rich Klawiter is a real estate development and finance lawyer with particular experience in the areas of land use and zoning, municipal finance (including tax increment and other public sector financing), landmarks and historic preservation matters and other public-private financing transactions. Rich also has extensive experience in domestic and international infrastructure financings and alternative energy development and finance. Rich's practice focuses on representing developers and municipalities in annexation, zoning and public sector related matters for complex commercial, retail, residential, hotel and office developments. He also concentrates on public-private development transactions, including the establishment of industrial, commercial, retail and residential tax increment financing projects; the creation of special service areas; and the structuring of sales tax sharing agreements, property tax abatements and government grants. Rich has secured more than $1 billion in economic incentives for his clients. Richard is a member of DLA Piper's North American Pro Bono Committee. 8.18.17

New York City

Peter Ciganik (MBA '07)

Managing Director

GTIS Partners

Peter Ciganik (MBA '07)

Managing Director

GTIS Partners

Peter Ciganik is a Managing Director at GTIS Partners. He leads the Investor Relations and Client Services functions across the Firm's investment vehicles. In addition, Mr. Ciganik is responsible for the Firm's macro and investment research, global strategy and new business development. Prior to joining GTIS in 2007, Mr. Ciganik worked with Morgan Stanley Real Estate Funds (MSREF) in London, and with Lehman Brothers Real Estate Partners (LBREP) in New York. He has approximately 15 years of real estate experience. In his prior engagements, Mr. Ciganik was responsible for the evaluation, financial modeling and due diligence of equity and mezzanine debt investments, participating in the acquisition of over $800 million of individual and portfolio assets. Before LBREP, Mr. Ciganik worked with Lehman’s Corporate Strategy and Acquisitions group, and as a business analyst with McKinsey & Co. in Frankfurt and New York. Mr. Ciganik graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard College and received an M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He is a member of Urban Land Institute (ULI) and Pension Real Estate Association (PREA).

Mardi Schecter (JD '86)

Partner

Younkins & Schecter, L.L.P.

Mardi Schecter (JD '86)

Partner

Younkins & Schecter, L.L.P.

Mardi J. Schecter received a Juris Doctor degree from Stanford University School of Law in 1986 and received an Artis Baccalaureates (A.B.) Degree in Political Science with highest distinction from the Honors Program at the University of Michigan in 1982. Prior to founding the Firm, she was associated with Kramer, Levin, Nessen, Kamin & Frankel (now known as Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP) and Battle Fowler (now part of Paul Hastings), where she practiced in the real estate departments and then served as Vice President and Counsel for First Winthrop Corporation for four years prior to the Firm's establishment. 8.18.17

Angel Olvera ('16)

Design Consultant

Olvera, Inc.

Angel Olvera ('16)

Design Consultant

Olvera, Inc.

Angel is an independent design consultant for real estate tech startups, accelerating their growth through the design of their brand and products. Currently, he is working with Coord, a Sidewalk Labs spinout company that helps cities manage their curbsides. In addition to his consultant work, he is building Marble, a platform for brands to reach seniors through modern offline and word-of-mouth marketing techniques. Angel earned a B.S. in Product Design from the Stanford School of Engineering. To see some of his work, check out: www.angeljolvera.com 4.17.19

Pacific Northwest

Mark Hefner ('81)

Sr. Director, National Office & Industrial Group

Marcus & Millichap

Mark Hefner ('81)

Sr. Director, National Office & Industrial Group

Marcus & Millichap

Mark Hefner is a Senior Director in Marcus & Millichap's National Office & Industrial Group. The Hefner Team is a national practice and operates from offices in Sacramento, Reno and Portland. Mark has more than 30 years of experience representing commercial occupiers and investors. Prior to joining Marcus & Millichap, he was CEO of MGO Realty Advisors in Los Angeles. Mark has been a shareholder, co-founder, owner and senior leader of several other real estate companies. Mark and his team deliver end-to-end real estate services, strategies and solutions to occupiers and investors in commercial real estate, across office, industrial and retail product types. The Hefner Team advises both private and public sector real estate occupiers and investors. Over his career, Mark has fulfilled client needs in over 1,000 sales, lease and joint venture transactions valued at more than $1.5 billion across the US. His work ranges from land acquisition and owner/user sales to industrial/technology campuses and high-rises. Mark holds Principal Broker real estate licenses in California, Washington, Oregon and Nevada.

Mike Medrzycki

Director of Business Development

Affiliated Engineers, Inc. (AEI)

Mike Medrzycki

Director of Business Development

Affiliated Engineers, Inc. (AEI)

Mike Medrzycki is the Director of Business Development of Affiliated Engineers, Inc. (AEI), based in Seattle, Washington. With over thirty years experience in the commercial construction, architectural and design industry, Mike builds long-term professional relationships, supported by strong client-focused programs. These nationwide programs benefit developers, owners, architects and commercial contractors by assisting them with their engineering design (MEP) services. Delivering total client delight is Mike's focus. Mike is active throughout his community and serves as Chairman for Goodwill of Tacoma’s Goodwill Community Services GCS Board, is an officer for the national Construction Business Development Association (CBDA) and is involved with ICSC.

David L. Knowles, Founding Board Member ('77, MBA '79)

Managing Director

Stanfield Partners

David L. Knowles, Founding Board Member ('77, MBA '79)

Managing Director

Stanfield Partners

David is responsible for the dedicated team at Stanfield Partners and its capital formation, strategic partnership, and investing activities in real estate technology companies. Stanfield is one of the earliest participants in this rapidly evolving, potentially huge market. They have reviewed hundreds of real estate technology startups, representing and investing in several promising companies. Stanfield is creating a dedicated real estate tech venture partnership focused on four verticals including Market Data/Analytics, Construction, Smart Buildings, and Capital Markets/Tokenization. His career has been focused on capital raising and strategy for the world's most prominent real estate companies including serving as the Co-Manager of the Global Real Estate Investment Banking Group at Salomon Brothers and as the Head of Western U.S. Real Estate Investment Banking at Merrill Lynch. David was a leader in the origination of the CMBS market together with being central to the creation of the global REIT market including responsibility for the IPO's of CB Commercial and Essex Property Trust. David has decades of experience in global investment and merchant banking. In addition to having represented many of the nation's most prominent real estate companies in connection with merger/advisory services and public/private capital raising, he has been closely associated with many of the financial services industry's first and most significant transactions involving securitization of commercial real estate. He is a Founding Board of Directors member, Co-Chair of the Innovation Committee, and Co-CFO of Stanford Professionals in Real Estate, and Co-Founder of the Stanford Real Estate Council. He is a Leadership & Advisory Board member of CRE Tech, an inaugural member of the Urban Land Institute's Technology Council, a former policy advisory board member of the U.C. Berkeley Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics, a former advisory board member of the Los Angeles Sports & Entertainment Commission, and a board member of the Los Angeles Stanford Business Advisory Council, and a licensed California real estate broker. Mr. Knowles received a BA degree with honors from Stanford University and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He has securities registration licenses Series 7, 24, 63, 66, and 79.

Carey Crutcher Smith (MBA '87)

Director of Community Relations

Lease Crutcher Lewis

Carey Crutcher Smith (MBA '87)

Director of Community Relations

Lease Crutcher Lewis

Carey joined Lease Crutcher Lewis in 2008, bringing over 25 years of experience in marketing, strategic planning and business operations. Her passion around building and strong interest in architecture are the result of growing up in a construction family. After ten years as Director of Marketing, she has shifted into a new role as Director of Community Relations, supporting community engagement and business development. Carey is a graduate of the Leadership Tomorrow program, a Lead Partner with Social Venture Partners, Vice President of the Lakeside School board, and co-chair of the Regional DBIA Marketing committee. She is Princeton Class of ’81 and Stanford Business School Class of ‘87. 6.3.19

Eleanor "Elle" Logan ('11)

Associate Asset Manager

BentallGreenOak

Eleanor "Elle" Logan ('11)

Associate Asset Manager

BentallGreenOak

Eleanor Logan is currently working as an asset manager at BentallGreenOak managing a portfolio of office and industrial assets. Prior to BentallGreenOak, Elle worked with Hess-Callahan Partners as an investment and development associate underwriting and developing urban infill, Class A office buildings in the Seattle market. Elle transitioned into the real estate industry after spending two years at Katerra, a tech startup focused on integrating the construction industry, and earning her Master's of Science in Real Estate Finance and Development from the University of Washington in 2019. During her time at Stanford and after graduating in 2011, Elle was a member of the U.S. Rowing National team where she competed at the Beijing, London, and Rio Olympic Games and won three Olympic gold medals in the women's eight boat.

Washington D.C.

Cary Kadlecek ('99)

Director

Goulston & Storrs, PC

Cary Kadlecek ('99)

Director

Goulston & Storrs, PC

Cary Kadlecek is a real estate attorney and director who focuses his practice in land use, entitlement, zoning, development, historic preservation and municipal law throughout the District of Columbia. He represents clients in a variety of land use and zoning matters relating to the development of mixed-use, residential, commercial and institutional projects. Cary works with private developers, universities and educational institutions, and non-governmental organizations. He is a regional director of Stanford Professionals in Real Estate (SPIRE) in the DC region. He graduated from Stanford University in 99, and went on to go to University of Southern California Gould School of Law where he obtained his JD in 2007, and his M.PL from University of Southern California. 7.8.19

Philip Porter ('91)

Vice President

Enterprise Community Investment, Inc.

Philip Porter ('91)

Vice President

Enterprise Community Investment, Inc.

Philip Porter is a vice president for syndication at Enterprise Community Investment, Inc. He originates investments primarily with sponsors based in Alaska, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, Northern California, Northern Virginia, Oregon and Washington. Since joining Enterprise in 2001, Philip has managed the investment of over $1.6 billion of Low-Income Housing and Historic Tax Credit equity in 240 developments with over 16,500 homes. Philip’s involvement with multifamily housing began in 1992. He managed market-rate housing with Oxford Management Company in California, underwrote HOME loans with the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency, and developed and managed affordable housing with Woodland Associates, Inc. in North Carolina. Philip has a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and holds master’s degrees in regional planning and business administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a Housing Credit Certified Professional, an associate member of Urban Land Institute, and a regional director for Stanford Professionals in Real Estate (SPIRE).

Kyle DeThomas (JD '13, MS '13)

Real Estate Associate (Attorney)

Ballard Spahr LLP

Kyle DeThomas (JD '13, MS '13)

Real Estate Associate (Attorney)

Ballard Spahr LLP

As a mid-level associate in the Washington D.C. office of Ballard Spahr LLP, Kyle's practice focuses primarily on mixed-use development and condominiums, with a growing emphasis on land use, affordable housing, qualified opportunity zones (QOZs). His experience covers a wide range of real estate matters, to include project and real estate finance, and navigating municipal rights of first refusal and tenant opportunities to purchase in connection with the purchase and sale of multifamily properties. He has assisted clients with the development of single and multi-family, hospitality, office, retail and industrial properties across the U.S., with a focus on the greater DC Metro area and limited experience in international projects (i.e., Mexico). Kyle received his JD from Stanford University together with an MS from its School of Engineering in Sustainable Design and Construction. While in law school, he served as President of the Real Estate Land Use Association and was a founding member of the Stanford Law Veterans Organization. Building on his experiences in the Leadership Council for Legal Diversity (LCLD) Pathfinder Program, Kyle remains engaged in his community by mentoring law students on how to successfully navigate law school and their transition into the legal profession. Prior to law school, Kyle served as a Captain and civil engineer in the United States Air Force during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom and was stationed in Okinawa, Japan following his graduation from the United States Air Force Academy. In addition to spending time with his family, his interests include child psychology, podcasts (e.g., Reasonable Doubt), Urban Land Institute (ULI) events and Showtime (Lakers). 8.20.19