While many studies continue to indicate that parity gaps still exist between men and women in the commercial real estate industry – primarily in terms of salaries and the levels of positions – in Miami many women are at the helm.
In South Florida, we are seeing women leading major commercial brokerage firms, serving as top executives at major financial institutions and as equity partners at top-ranking law firms throughout the region.
When we read in the news about high-profile real estate transactions that close, in many instances there are women that played a key role in making them happen. Take the 60,000-square-foot lease at 600 Brickell at Brickell World Plaza secured on behalf of Northern Trust Bank, the $160 million construction loan for the Mansions of Acqualina, or the 32,527-square-foot office lease at 396 Alhambra Circle for Diageo – all closing in the past four months.
As the 2013 President of CREW-Miami (Commercial Real Estate Women Miami), the leading commercial real estate association in Miami-Dade County, which I have been a part of for the past six years, I’m seeing how more and more women are entering the commercial real estate industry because of the professional opportunities available in fields like brokerage, lending, development, architecture and law, among others.
In recent years, CREW-Miami, which has been active in the region’s real estate community for 26 years, has seen a growth in its male membership of more than 20%. Currently, the Miami chapter has the highest percentage of male members than any other CREW chapter in the national network of 70-plus chapters with over 8,000 members.
Not only is this a validation of the value that a female-based professional organization can provide, but more importantly, a recognition of the fact that by women supporting the achievements of women and men supporting the achievements of women, we are best positioned to advance the state of our real estate industry in Miami.
Margaret Nee serves as the 2013 CREW-Miami President and is Vice President of Development at Pointe Group Advisors based in Coconut Grove, Florida.