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Deals & Dealmakers

WHO’S NEWS: Matthew Sparks lands at GFI Realty; JLL hires another Silicon Valley veteran

GFI Realty Services the hire of Matthew Sparks as Senior Managing Director.
An industry professional with more than 20 years of commercial real estate experience, Sparks will leverage his industry contacts and knowledge of the New York City multifamily market to expand GFI’s investment sales activity across the city.
Sparks served most recently as a principal at Eastern Consolidated, where he specialized in arranging multifamily investment sales transactions.
Prior to that, he spent three years as a managing partner of ERG Property Advisors, a brokerage he co-founded in 2010. Earlier, Sparks spent more than a decade at GFI Realty, where he developed his expertise in the broad range of multifamily properties. He also has extensive experience transacting in the affordable housing space.
Over the course of his career, Sparks has arranged a total of approximately $1.5 billion of transactions. Recent transactions include the $63 million sale of a 13-building multifamily portfolio in Inwood
Sparks studied accounting and finance at SUNY Old Westbury and is a member of REBNY.
Herrick announced its newest litigation partner, Sean E. O’Donnell, has joined its team from the New York office of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.
O’Donnell is a trial lawyer who focuses on finance, restructuring and real estate litigation for hedge funds, private equity funds, creditor committees, debtors, public and privately held companies, real estate developers, insuraance and financial advisors, venture capitalists and other individual professionals.
CBRE Group, Inc. announced the promotion of Kevin Kraiss to President of the company’s Global Workplace Solutions (GWS) West Division.
Kraiss will have global responsibility for CBRE’s occupier clients headquartered in the 13 western U.S. states, overseeing more than 5000 employees providing enterprise facility management, project management, transaction management and strategic consulting services.
Kraiss will succeed Darcy Mackay who has been named CBRE’s Global Director of Human Resources.
He has been a Divisional Director in the GWS West Division for the past five-plus years.
Prior to CBRE, Kraiss had two decades of consulting experience at Hammes Company and Deloitte & Touche.
He has an MBA from the Wisconsin School of Business and a BS in Accounting and Finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
NAI National Realty announced that Kevin Schaefer has joined their Paramus brokerage team as a Sales Associate.
Schaefer joins NIA from RE/MAX in Oradell, NJ, where he leased and sold investment properties throughout the region.
With a background in real estate driven technical project management, he brings both valuable experience and negotiating skills to his clients.
JLL announced Silicon Valley veteran Ravi Mirchandaney has been hired as the Head of Software Engineering for the firm’s Digital Products team.
Mirchandaney is the latest Silicon Valley star to join JLL. Earlier this year JLL hired former Google executive Vinay Goel as Chief Digital Product Officer and previously hired Silicon Valley veterans Mihir Shah and Yishai Lerner to co-lead JLL Spark, a global division dedicated to identifying and delivering new technology-driven real estate service offerings.
Mirchandaney will be responsible for hiring and leading engineering teams across JLL’s data and application platforms.
He brings more than 30 years of experience. Most recently, he was Senior Vice President of Engineering at Wiser Solutions. Previously, he was Senior Vice President of Engineering at Vendavo.
Earlier in his career, Mirchandaney was Senior Vice President of Engineering at C3, where he delivered the first. Prior to this, he led a multinational team at Oracle. In addition, he has held a variety of engineering leadership roles at companies in Silicon Valley, Houston and India.
Mirchandaney holds a doctorate in computer engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Mumbai (formerly the University of Bombay).
Rosenberg & Estis, P.C. announced that Benjamin M. Williams has joined the firm as a Member to lead the firm’s new Property Tax Department.
The addition of Williams and the establishment of a property tax department demonstrates Rosenberg & Estis’ commitment to continue providing clients with comprehensive legal representation across all aspects of real estate.
Williams brings experience in New York property tax issues to the firm.
He has represented thousands of clients in property tax appeals and at New York City Tax Commission hearings.
Williams also has worked on Industrial and Commercial Abatement Program (ICAP), 421-a, and not-for-profit exemption applications and projections.
Prior to joining Rosenberg & Estis, Williams was an associate attorney with Podell, Schwartz, Schecter & Banfield, LLP.
He graduated from Rutgers University School of Engineering with a Bachelor of Science degree and received a Juris Doctor degree from Rutgers University School of Law.
Midwood Investment & Development has hired Dan McInerney as its new Head of Asset Management. McInerney brings more than 15 years of experience to his position.
He joins the firm from Taconic Investment Partners, where he served as Senior Vice President.
Prior to joining Taconic in 2009, McInerney worked at Georgia Malone & Co. From 2005 to 2007, McInerney was an Assistant Vice President at Related Capital,.
McInerney began his real estate career in 2001 at Houlihan-Parnes.
He holds a Master of Science in real estate from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in communication from the University of Scranton.

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