2018 WLI Prologis Scholarship Winners
September 6, 2018
The ULI Women’s Leadership Initiative is delighted to announce the recipients of the WLI Prologis Scholarship Program for ULI’s Fall Meeting in Boston, MA on October 8 – 11, 2018.
We are pleased to announce our partnership with Prologis for this prestigious program. Senior women at Prologis created the grassroots group Breakthrough that supports the retention of women and identifies and removes barriers to advancement for Prologis across the globe. Breakthrough’s goals resonate with those of WLI in that Breakthrough strives to create a work environment where women feel connected and empowered, while creating a business culture that offers opportunities for success and recognizes the value of a gender-diverse workforce.
The Scholarship program includes a complimentary registration to the Fall Meeting as well as up to $2,000 in travel expenses. At the Meeting, recipients will be hosted by senior WLI members at a Product Council as well as at all WLI branded Meeting events. Following the Fall Meeting, ULI will post major takeaways from each recipient’s experience.
Having many outstanding applications, the WLI Selection Committee announced the ten outstanding recipients of the Fall Meeting scholarship:
Valerie Becker, ULI Indiana. Ms. Becker has over 14 years of experience in commercial real estate lending. She began her career in 2004 with SunTrust Bank, where she spent over nine years, including roles originating financing, resolving high risk credits, and creating financing solutions for institutional investors. In 2013, Ms. Becker joined the commercial mortgage backed securities group at Fitch Ratings, where she led performance reviews for CMBS transactions and provided guidance to investors. Most recently, Ms. Becker spent two years in the capital markets group at Simon Property Group arranging financing on the company’s portfolio of malls, outlet centers, and luxury retail properties. She joined The National Bank of Indianapolis in 2017, where her responsibilities include providing innovative financing solutions for commercial real estate investors including acquisition, recapitalization, and construction lending for multi-family, hospitality, office, retail, industrial, and mixed-use properties.
Ms. Becker is a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has served on the Boards of Directors for a variety of nonprofit organizations and currently serves as a member of ULI Indiana’s WLI Steering Committee and coordinates the ULI Indiana Mentorship Program. She is also active in IndyCREW and the UCREW Committee, working to plan and host free roundtables at Central Indiana Universities where students have the opportunity to learn about some of the rewarding career options within CRE and network with IndyCREW members. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Annie Clark Cambria, ULI Louisiana. Annie has 20 years of community development experience in both New Orleans and New York City focusing on tax credits, public sector real estate development, community development finance and affordable housing policy. She currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer of Education Facilities Development for the Louisiana Recovery School District (RSD), where she is responsible for all aspects of the $1.8 billion public School Facilities Master Plan for Orleans Parish. The master plan is among the largest school building programs in the country, and will build new or renovate 82 schools across the city of New Orleans to serve 55,000 students. Prior to this role, she has served as the Director of Strategic Finance at the RSD, where she was responsible for financing the gap in master plan, closing approximately $275 million in NMTC and HTC transactions. Additionally, she is an adjunct lecturer at Tulane University’s School of Architecture, where she teaches the Urban Land Institute’s UrbanPlan program to business and architecture undergraduate students.
She received a master’s degree in Community and Regional Planning from the Pratt Institute and a bachelor’s degree in urban studies from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to joining RSD she led legislative activities at the federal and state level as Policy Director at the Louisiana Housing Finance Agency (now the Louisiana Housing Corporation) and has been a member on the boards of several local community groups and recently served on Mayor Cantrell’s economic development transition team. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Taylor Cooper, ULI Minnesota. Taylor Cooper is a THOR Development Manager and Development’s division Operation Leader. Internally she organizes all development managers, analysts and interns under the direction of Vice President of Development. Additionally she focuses on the pre-development phase and liaising within THOR Companies and to external partners, leveraging her back in architecture and commercial banking operations. Her passion is real estate development that not only satiates investors, but truly uplifts end users from all walks of life.
Taylor is a Maryland native, who within six weeks of deciding, took a calculated risk and drove across country to Minneapolis. She believes in the city’s potential to become a world-class city. Since arriving, Taylor has found a real estate community just as passionate, and has joined several boards to keep busy working toward this goal.
Taylor holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from Northeastern University and a Masters of Real Estate Development from the University of Maryland. When she is not hanging out with her boyfriend James and new kitten Percy, she is an avid Equestrian and amateur seamstress. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Amanda Janzen, ULI Minnesota. Amanda joined the Schafer Richardson development team in late 2013. As a project manager, she is responsible for guiding all phases of real estate development including predevelopment due diligence, securing public/private funding for project finance, guiding design, overseeing construction, coordinating staff and project consultants, and managing project lease-up. Amanda holds a Masters in Urban Planning from the Humphrey School at the University of Minnesota. She was also a Teaching Specialist at the Humphrey School for a class called “Private Sector Development”. She is currently on the Executive Committee of the Urban Land Institute’s Young Leaders Group, a Developing Leaders committee member of NAIOP, and a lead on the planning committee for Women in Real Estate and Urban Planning (WIRED UP). She was recently named “A Rising Young Professional” by Finance & Commerce. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Elizabeth Morrison, ULI Washington. Elizabeth is Senior Vice President of Capital Markets at JBG SMITH, a fully integrated pure-play REIT focused exclusively in the Washington DC region. At JBG SMITH, Elizabeth is responsible for sourcing and managing all aspects of the Company’s debt portfolio and capital planning. Prior to joining JBG SMITH, Elizabeth spent 8 years at Bank of America where she managed a $1 billion credit portfolio and underwrote and structured complex commercial real estate transactions. Elizabeth began her career in the Commercial Real Estate Banking Group at LaSalle Bank in Chicago, IL. Elizabeth sits on the Associate Advisory Board for Georgetown University’s Steers Center for Global Real Estate and serves as Co-Chair of the ULI Washington Special Events Committee. Elizabeth is also an active member of Real Estate Group in Washington, DC. Elizabeth holds a Masters in Real Estate from Johns Hopkins University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Georgetown University. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Navi Sandhu, ULI Chicago. Navi Sandhu an Assistant Vice President at Fifield Companies on the Acquisitions, Finance and Development team. Her primary responsibilities include underwriting multifamily development projects and working on debt and equity financing. Prior to joining Fifield Companies, Navi was a senior associate at Wrightwood Financial, where she worked on underwriting and analysis of development platforms across the country in order to provide growth capital. Before her time at Wrightwood Financial, Navi was an analyst on the office investment sales team at HFF and worked on the disposition of $650 million of CBD and suburban office assets. Navi started her career at JPMorgan Chase on the interest rate and foreign exchange risk management team. Navi holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a BSBA from Fordham University. She is an active member of the Urban Land Institute and the Kellogg Real Estate Alumni Club. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Kimberly Stephenson, ULI Kentucky. Kimberly Stephenson is Marian’s Vice President of Development and actively leads the global development process for all of the company’s projects. With Marian since 2006, Kimberly and her team are responsible for project due diligence, coordination of project financial partners and key personnel, and the operations of all of the company’s affordable housing activities.
Her time with the company has seen her manage and coordinate over $230MM in various project funds while her deal leadership has been invaluable to Marian’s growth. Kimberly has over 17-years of experience in the housing development industry including the utilization of 9% LIHTCs, 4% LIHTCs and tax exempt bonds, and state and federal historic tax credits along with a variety of soft funding resources.
Prior to joining Marian, Kimberly worked in banking with Fifth Third Bank and Neighborhood Development Corporation; the oldest nonprofit housing developer in Louisville. She is actively involved in the development and preservation community in Louisville and is a fully certified Housing Credit Certified Specialist. Kimberly graduated from the University of Louisville in 1999 with a degree in political science. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Meghan Webster, AIA, ULI Chicago. As a Global Education, Civic + Culture Practice Area Leader at Gensler, Meghan leads teams and projects across contexts that are both global and local, strategic and built, virtual and physical. She helps shape strategic vision, develop new business, leverage research, and build client engagement. Prior to her time at Gensler, she lived and worked in Boston and Germany for Behnisch Architekten, developing an international perspective on architecture.
Meghan’s vision and focus on delivering results to clients cultivates long-term relationships. She has experience in every phase of the design, management and construction process. Her work with Northwestern University over the past several years encompasses projects at multiple scales, the most recent of which is a strategic, data-based planning project to refurbish and rebrand 1.9M square feet of campus common space. Meghan’s portfolio of education projects includes Capitol Federal Hall for the School of Business at University of Kansas – a building that has received multiple awards since its opening in 2016. She is currently leading the team for the new Columbia College Chicago Student Center, a ground-up building that aspires to redefine this campus paradigm. Read Fall Meeting essay.
A frequent blogger and speaker, Meghan regularly contributes to GenslerOn and has presented at regional and national SCUP conferences and SXSW EDU. With her team, Meghan started a panel discussion series called Dialogues with Gensler. She now moderates the series, covering trends at the forefront of higher education. Since its inception in 2012, the series has drawn support from leadership at many of Chicago’s institutions, including the City of Chicago, industry partners, and clients. Meghan is an active member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI), and currently is a vice chair on ULI’s Chicago Product Council on Mixed Use & Urban Development. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Alison Wicks, ULI Northwest – Portland. Alison is a Senior Project Coordinator for Prosper Portland, the City of Portland’s urban renewal and economic development agency (formerly the Portland Development Commission). Alison manages a wide-ranging portfolio of real estate development and community economic development projects. Over the past seven years, she has managed large-scale development projects, built public-private partnerships, activated vacant parcels with interim-use and temporary art projects, and has worked closely with communities to engage them in the development process. She received a B.A. with distinction from McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, and a Masters of Urban and Regional Planning from Portland State University. Alison is currently the Co-Chair of the ULI Northwest – Portland Young Leaders Group. Read Fall Meeting essay.
Sarah Zahn, ULI Northwest – Portland. Sarah Zahn is the Director of Development at Portland, OR based ZRZ Realty, which is focused on redeveloping the 33-acre Zidell Yards located in the South Waterfront neighborhood of Portland. The Zidell Yards project, a former riverfront industrial site occupied for 90 years by the Zidell Family, will deliver over 2,000 new units of housing, 1.5M square feet of office space, 200,000 square feet of new retail and 10 acres of public parks and open space to the city of Portland over the next decade. Prior to joining ZRZ, Sarah was a senior project manager at Gerding Edlen, a Portland-based real estate investment/development/management firm that focuses on developing highly sustainable, mixed-use, residential, office, higher educational, public and nonprofit projects in Portland, Boston, Chicago, Seattle and the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as other major US markets. At Gerding Edlen, Sarah specialized in working on projects being developed through public-private partnerships, in partnership with non-profits, and on other projects capitalized using public funds or involving affordable housing. Prior to joining Gerding Edlen in 2013, Sarah was the Director of Housing for nonprofit community development corporation Human Solutions, which provides low-income housing and anti-poverty services to families in Multnomah County, OR. At Human Solutions, Sarah oversaw all housing and development activities as well as the management of Human Solutions’ more than 700 units of affordable housing. During her tenure, she helped the organization add over 150 units of affordable housing to its portfolio. Sarah holds a degree from Tufts University and in addition to serving as chair of the Portland Housing Advisory Commission, which is the advisory body for the Portland Housing Bureau, is a member of the Portland Streetcar Board and co-chair of ULI Northwest’s Women’s Leadership Initiative. Read Fall Meeting essay.