Women of Influence 25th Anniversary Special
REAL ESTATE FORUM PRESENTS
Twenty-five years ago, REAL ESTATE FORUM ran its first ever feature profiling Women of Influence in the commercial real estate industry. It was a big event for us. Back then it was clear there was a need to highlight the (very few) women who were making inroads in the space—not
only for the women themselves but also for the men who worked alongside them and appreciated their
efforts despite the challenges they faced. Institutional memory has it that we were surprised by the
number of applications we received for that long ago article. Since then we have expanded our coverage to include women who belong in our Hall of Fame and our Women to Watch categories.
Each year we are progressively surprised by not only the number of applications but the wealth of
information that is included in them. These women have worked very hard for their careers and they
have not been shy about letting us know. And why not? They have become CFOs, they have launched
their own companies, they sit in boardrooms and talk to investors with funds in the billions of dollars.
Their journey has not been easy. As one woman told us: “You had to prove yourself by being better
prepared and by working harder to connect with” others in the industry.
At the same time these women also volunteer their valuable time for charities and other worthy
causes. In many cases, these women have devoted themselves to mentoring other women coming up
behind them. Another women, describing her efforts to make it a priority to mentor young women in
the CRE space, said her mentees are “powerful yet humble” and “driven and accomplished.”
These are the stories we tell—and have told in previous issues—in the following pages. You will
read stories of hard work, dedication, late nights, the juggling of family life and work commitments
and, above all, the determination to succeed. Just like our readers did 25 years ago. Much has
changed for women since then, but the essential ingredients for success have, for better or worse,
stayed the same.—Lisa Brown and Steve Lubetkin