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Deals & Dealmakers

WHO’S NEWS: CBRE announces Jon Williams joins firm senior vice president

Gettry Marcus CPA, P.C., has welcomed Matthew Cohen as principal. Cohen will join Gettry Marcus’ small business group and will be based out of the firm’s New York City law office.

Businessman standing with arms crossed in office

Cohen, a CPA, brings with him over 30 years of expertise in accounting, tax, and consulting and has experience working with corporations, partnerships, individuals, and start-up businesses. Cohen specializes in devising and implementing tax and financial strategies, allowing clients to focus and plan for their businesses future.

Prior to joining Gettry Marcus, Cohen was a member of the Business Advisory group of a large New York City CPA Firm.

A resident of Plainview, Matt received his Bachelor of Science in accounting from Brooklyn College.

He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants and The Resource Group of New York City. Cohen also serves as chairman of Powering Potential, a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to use technology to enhance education of students in underdeveloped countries.


Kramer Levin has announced that Nathalia Bernardo has joined the firm’s real estate practice as a partner in the New York office.

Bernardo represents clients on a broad range of real estate capital market transactions, including joint ventures, ground leasing, acquisitions and dispositions, financing, development, leasing and management. From private equity firms, institutional real estate investment advisors and family offices to high net worth individuals and private real estate owners, her clientele regularly transact both domestic and international deals involving residential, commercial, industrial and mixed-use assets.

Bernardo serves as an adjunct professor of law at Cornell University Law School, and an adjunct assistant professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning & Preservation. She received her JD, cum laude, from Boston College and her BBA, summa cum laude, from George Washington University.

Bernardo is joining the firm from Paul Hastings, where she was a partner. Her arrival underscores Kramer Levin’s commitment to diversity. Over the past three years, 50 percent of all new Kramer Levin partners were women.


GHP Office Realty, LLC has announced that Rachel Greenspan has joined the firm. As senior director of GHP Office Realty, Greenspan will be focusing on sales, acquisitions and financing of GHP’s commercial portfolio. Additionally, Greenspan will be working closely with property management on Major Capital Improvement projects. She will be playing an integral role in executing deals and sourcing new opportunities for the firm.

Greenspan brings more than five years of experience working in the fragrance industry. Most recently she served as an account manager for Takasago International Corporation, where she was recognized by the Fragrance Foundation as a Notable, one of eleven selected as a game changer and an up and coming talent in the industry. Greenspan has always had an interest in business and real estate.

She graduated from the University of Michigan in 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a concentration in Marketing. 


Besen Partners, LLC has welcomed Anudeep Gosal to its Hotel Advisory Group as an investment sales advisor. In his new position, Gosal will consult with Besen Partners’ clients and affiliates regarding investment and acquisition opportunities of hotel assets. Prior to joining Besen Partners, Gosal was the business development and overseas sales manager for Nuevo International. His experience in the hospitality sector also includes transaction advisory positions for Backpacker Panda and J.W. Marriot Corporation in Mumbai, India, and Ternate Hospitality in Pune, India.

Gosal graduated with honors from the Emirates Academy (in association with Ecole Hotelier de Lausanne), Dubai, U.A.E. He holds a B.S. in International Hospitality & Business Management.


Lee & Associates NJ brokerage has announced the appointment of Suzanne Kiall to director and managing broker in its New Jersey office. Kiall brings 21 years of New Jersey commercial real estate expertise.

Kiall, founder and broker of record at Suzanne Kiall & Associates, LLC, is a commercial real estate veteran who has represented retail, medical, office and industrial landlords and tenants, as well as identifying and executing solutions for owner/occupied properties and investment opportunities on both the buyer and seller side. Primarily focused in the Morris/Western Essex County marketplace, Kiall recently represented Centrient Pharma and InStar Group in two new tenancies at 2001 Route 46, Parsippany, owned by Marcus Partners and has worked to bring a 25,000-s/f office building in Parsippany to 90 percent occupancy for The Silverman Group.

From 2018 to 2019, Kiall sold eight buildings of various types while representing tenants and landlords on the leasing of nearly 28 spaces in every commercial real estate sector.


Melissa Naeder, a senior director in the Long Island office of Cushman & Wakefield, has been elected to the board of the Commercial Industrial Brokers Society of Long Island.

Naeder previously an associate board member of the brokers group, has 17 years of experience in retail real estate. She has been with Cushman & Wakefield since 2017 and previously was director at Sabre Real Estate Group in Garden City.

The new board members’ terms became effective Jan. 1 and run for two years.

Clem Coté has been elected an associate board member of the Commercial Industrial Brokers Society of Long Island.

Coté, founding and managing partner of Woodbury-based Sovereign Realty Group, began his career in early 1998 in commercial real estate with a focus on retail and industrial sales and leasing. In 2006, he transitioned to investment sales, specializing in retail net leased (NNN) properties, shopping centers, strip malls and mixed use properties.

Coté earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Villanova University and also an active member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), The Long Island Real Estate Group (LIREG), State Association of Realtors (NYSAR), National Association of Realtors (NAR) and he Long Island Board of Realtors (LIBOR).

Meanwhile, John Magnani, an associate board member, was re-elected.

Magnani, sales manager of the commercial division of Daniel Gale Sotheby’s International Realty in Plandome, was re-elected an associate board member.

The new associate board members’ two-year terms became effective Jan. 1 CIBS is an advocate for commercial development in the Long Island market.


Morrison & Foerster law firm has announced announce that David Fertig has joined the firm in its New York office as a partner in its Commercial Litigation Group.

Fertig brings more than 20 years of experience representing companies and their C-suite executives in complex, high-stakes disputes, both in U.S. state and federal courts and in U.S. and international arbitration proceedings. His joining Morrison & Foerster also highlights the continued growth of the firm’s New York office over the last 12 months, following the arrival of six other lateral partners.

Fertig’s trial and arbitration practice spans the full range of commercial litigation and counseling, including matters related to contract and intellectual property issues, fraud and other business torts, antitrust, labor and employment laws, and bankruptcy, real estate and insurance litigation.

He advises companies in a wide range of industries, with significant experience in the technology, life sciences, media and entertainment, private equity, financial services, information, infrastructure, retail, real estate and insurance sectors.


Cresa commercial real estate firm has welcomed Elisa W. Tsai to the New York City office. In her new position, Tsai, will serve as a tenant representative and advisor for multi-national, as well as local businesses. Tsai’s past experience includes positions as a senior trade officer for TECRO, where she liaised with the U.S. and Taiwan governments on investment and trade; and as trade officer for the Bureau of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Economic Affairs. Just prior to joining Cresa, she was an associate with Capital Property Partners.

Tsai, whose native languages are Mandarin and Taiwanese, is also fluent in English, Japanese, Spanish and French. She holds a BA in Economics from National Taiwan University and an MBA from NYU Stern School of Business, where she was on the 2016 Dean’s List.

Cresa has also welcomed Nora Campbell to the New York City office.

Campbell joins Cresa with 10 years of corporate experience working with Fortune 500 companies in the financial services, information technology, legal, healthcare, retail and fashion, media, nonprofit and hospitality sectors.

In her new position, Campbell will serve as an advisor, providing strategic real estate guidance across multiple service lines for her clients.

Prior to joining Cresa, Campbell specialized in office leasing, tenant representation at JRT Realty Group. Previously, she worked in the executive search industry where she established key relationships with the C-Suite across multiple corporations and managed the full sales cycle end-to-end.


Forchelli Deegan Terrana LLP has welcomed James P. Rosenzweig to its Real Estate, Banking & Finance and Restaurant & Hospitality practice groups as a partner.

Rosenzweig joins the firm from The Riese Organization of New York City, where he served as vice president and general counsel for more than two decades.

Rosenzweig earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Chicago Law School and his Bachelor of Arts degree, magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania. He is admitted in New York State; the U.S. District Court for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York; and the U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit.


CBRE has announced that Jon Williams has joined the firm as a senior vice president. Williams will focus on further expanding the company’s market leading advisory platform.

Williams has expertise in advising corporate occupiers through complex operational and financial occupancy strategies and decisions. He has consistently been recognized as an industry leader earning NAIOP – New Jersey’s Deal of the Year Award in 2018, and both NJBIZ and the Mid-Atlantic Real Estate Journal’s 40 Under 40 recognition.

Prior to joining CBRE, Williams was an executive director at Cushman & Wakefield.

Williams earned a B.A. in Economics from Villanova University and also studied at New York University’s Real Estate School. Presently, he serves on the Board of Directors of the Villanova University Alumni Association and is a member of the Board of Directors of the University’s Soccer program. He also served on the Board of Directors of the American Heart Association.


Pillsbury has recruited Robert Grados as partner in the firm’s real estate practice.

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He joins the firm’s New York office from Jones Day, significantly expanding Pillsbury’s firmwide real estate finance capabilities.

Grados counsels national and regional financial institutions, REITs, real estate investment funds, insurance companies, and institutional investors in matters involving real estate structured finance, advising on all manner of loan origination, complex credit facilities and mezzanine financings.

His experience spans syndicated, securitized, and single-lender mezzanine and mortgage loans; construction and permanent loans; corporate, warehouse, and subscription credit facilities; “repo” transactions; and other complex and cross-border structured financings. Grados also frequently advises on the workout and restructuring of troubled real estate loans and credit facilities and has represented property owners and developers in the acquisition, disposition, construction, leasing, and development of commercial and multifamily real estate.

Grados is already the second partner hire made by Pillsbury this year. On January 2, the firm announced that Peter Elias had joined as the firm’s Tax practice as a partner in San Diego. Elias also came to the firm from Jones Day.


Shadow Ventures, a venture capital firm focused startups in the AEC and CRE tech markets, has announced that Welzoo Co-Founder Zach Firestone has joined the company as associate, expanding the company’s presence in the New York metro area. Firestone will be working closely with the Shadow Team on sourcing deals for investment, growing Shadow’s presence locally, and working with new and existing partners throughout the Northeast. 

Zach Firestone became known in the start-up environment while serving as the co-founder of Welzoo, a startup that created a free platform to support non-profits and student organizations. After his tenure at Welzoo, Firestone held consulting roles at early stage startups including Charidy, Gigameet and MeVee. At these firms, Firestone worked with CEOs/CIOs on growth, strategy, investor relations and business development models.   

In addition to his startup experience, Firestone worked at Meridian Capital Group where he arranged financing for real estate acquisitions and facilitated sales of multi-million-dollar assets including multi-family and development properties.

While at Meridian, Firestone was named among Real Estate Weekly’s “2018’s Rising Stars of Real Estate” and Top 100 Magazine’s “Top 100 People in Real Estate.”

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