By Al Barbarino
Greg Taubin, 39, has a new title at Studley – executive managing director.
It’s exciting for him, but it’s nothing new. His title has changed six times since he joined the firm 18 years ago, he said. His first title – summer intern – is certainly one of the more memorable ones.
It was 1993, the summer between his junior and senior years at Tulane University in New Orleans. Taubin, who grew up in Westchester, decided to come back up to the Northeast for the summer to get his first taste of real estate at Studley.
It was an age where brokers scoured index cards instead of the internet for leads. For six weeks Taubin covered the basics. He got a lay of the land. He toured the city, scoping out office buildings simply to get a feel for what they looked like and where they were located. He supported brokers in any way that he could.
There would be no spring break for Taubin during his senior year, in 1994. Instead, he would be busy interviewing for a full time gig with Studley. The decision paid off.
“I obviously made the right choice,” he said. “I wanted to graduate college knowing that I had a place to go to work every day.”
He’s had a place to work ever since. He has helped Studley close over five million square feet of leasing transactions. His achievements include multiple acquisitions and dispositions totaling 800,000 on behalf of Tiffany & Co.; assisting on a 400,000 s/f disposition on behalf of Time Inc.; leases totaling 100,000 s/f on behalf of Thomson Hine LLP; as well as 150,000 s/f of acquisitions and dispositions on behalf of The Harry Fox Agency.
His clients are located in nearly every Manhattan submarket, across industries as diverse as law, financial services, technology, fashion and apparel.
“It’s interesting in terms of getting to understand how certain businesses and partnerships work,” he said. “I could be dealing with a 70-year-old managing partner of a law firm or a 25-year-old CEO of a technology company that’s going from 50 to 150 employees in six months. It’s pretty remarkable.”
Taubin counts on his determination, high level of energy, multi-tasking ability and time management skills to succeed. Patience is also key to a level head, as every deal has its own unique process and issues, sometimes taking up to 3 years to complete, he said. It also helps that his job is commission-based – an environment that he thrives in.
“I’ve never had a salary in my life,” he said. “There you have the hunger. That’s your livelihood.”
David Goldstein, an executive vice president and director at Studley, has also been instrumental in shaping Taubin as a broker. It was 16 years ago that Goldstein took Taubin under his wings and the two have worked hand-in-hand ever since.
“He (David) has guided me through my career here, he has been my mentor, and he has really taught me the business,” Taubin said. “He has truly molded me into the broker I am now – the same way I’m helping to shape our young brokers today.”
But along with the good times have come the more challenging ones. Taubin’s daughter, who would have been 8 years old this April, passed away a little over two years ago from a brain tumor, when she was about five and a half years old. He credits his colleagues and clients for being exceptionally supportive during the difficult time, when he said work took on a therapeutic role.
It led him to become actively involved with Making Headway, a foundation dedicated to the care of children with brain and spinal cord tumors. The group is partially made up of team of doctors he and his wife worked with during his daughter’s illness. The experience put things into perspective for Taubin, who has two other young children – a soon-to-be six-year-old daughter and a son who will turn two in April.
“I had a nice upbringing – a typical kid in Westchester,” he said. “When you were blowing out the candles at a birthday party you would never have thought to wish for health for yourself and your family.
“Sometimes we just take things for granted.”