As executive vice president of CBRE, Babikian has become one of the most active and respected brokers in the tri-state area. His consultative approach has led to long-term relationships and a career representing Fortune 500 corporations to nonprofit institutions, as well as emerging growth companies in all facets of the commercial real estate process, on a local and national level. He is consistently ranked as a top broker in the Saddle Brook office and has won numerous industry awards, including NAIOP’s Transaction of the Year. Recent transactions of note include Mercedes-Benz USA and Daimler (multiple national assignments); Quest Diagnostics (multiple national assignments); and Siemens (multiple national assignments).
David Barry and Michael Barry
Dave and Michael Barry, brothers and co-owners of Ironstate Development Co., have received high praise from their competitors for their transformative thinking to neighborhoods including Hoboken and Jersey City. Ironstate has over $2 billion in its pipeline worldwide and is responsible for an extensive range of apartments, condominiums and retail and recreational spaces in key urban centers near mass transportation hubs. They are best known for partnering with Mack-Cali on the Jersey City Urby brand of apartments within Harborside (three 69-story rental buildings). The duo’s most prominent recent activity includes: completion of The Columbus Collection in 2019 which includes 1,284 rental residences in three residential towers, a 152-key Residence Inn by Marriott® hotel, an approximate 1,000-car garage and street-level retail space which has collectively spurred the growth of the Grove Street neighborhood in Downtown Jersey City; the launch of 235 Grand in 2019 with KRE Group, a 46-story, 549-unit rental building in Downtown Jersey City; and Ironstate has other residential developments ongoing in Jersey City, Harrison and Montclair. Michael is an active director on the board of trustees of the New Jersey Apartment Association, is a gubernatorial appointee to the state’s Landlord-Tenant policy committee and is a long-standing member of the Urban Land Institute. David is currently chairman of the board of trustees for Liberty Science Center and a founding member of the board of Beat the Streets Wrestling.
Antonio M. Calcado
Calcado has been executive vice president for Strategic Planning and Operations and chief operating officer at Rutgers University since 2016. In a career spanning more than 30 years, he has held a number of leadership positions at Rutgers, including vice president of facilities and capital planning, and senior vice president of institutional planning and operations. Calcado’s authority includes oversight of the university’s capital construction program, leading institutional planning and strategic endeavors, and managing a $450 million operating budget. He is a leader in negotiating and structuring private-public partnerships generating over $300 million in returned equity through entrepreneurial partnerships with the development community as well as local, state, and federal authorities. He has leveraged assets both inside and outside the university in order to strengthen its ties to the financial markets positively impacting the university’s balance sheet. Calcado is responsible for the stewardship of all of the university’s physical assets, totaling over 29 million square feet valued in excess of $12 billion across New Jersey. Regarded as a national authority on deferred maintenance, some of Calcado’s major accomplishments include establishment of the university’s Physical Master Plan, which produced strategies for future growth that respond to the university’s long-term goals; design and execution of Rutgers 2030, the university’s first comprehensive physical master plan to incorporate Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences; implementation of $3.1 billion of capital construction, both active and realized; deployment of Integrated Work Management System, which sequences operations and optimizes productivity, threading together all of Rutgers’ campuses as well as assets; implementation of new 911 security and Space Management Systems, and integration of advanced cross-state technology systems.
If the Gateway Project ever gets off the ground (and under the river), proponents estimate it will double rail transit capacity between New Jersey and New York. Tony Coscia, a partner at Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf with a focus on corporate litigation and transactional law, was one of the Gateway Development Corp.’s trustees, established to oversee the project before the recent creation of the Gateway Development Commission, of which he is one of seven board members. “They are seasoned transportation, advocacy and government professionals who will be tremendously helpful in finally replacing a more than century-old system with 21st Century rail transportation linking New York and New Jersey,“ said Frank Sacr, the interim executive director of the development corporation in a statement in October. Coscia has been a power player in the region – and the nation’s – transportation system since becoming chairman of Amtrak in 2013. He also chairs its audits and finance committee.
Pete Crovo and Mark Shearer
Both Crovo and Shearer have moved on from their time at Prologis where Crovo was senior vice president and Shearer vice president, but when Amazon was looking for industrial space, Prologis was at the top of their list for leasing distribution and logistics center space, and these two still maintain a significant portfolio in the area. Crovo is chief operating officer for Seagis Property Group LP, an owner and operator of industrial buildings in South Florida, New Jersey and the New York Metropolitan area. Prior to that, Crovo specialized in core plus and value add investments and redevelopments working in markets on the East Coast and also ran NYC/NJ and Florida for Prologis. Shearer is senior vice president and regional development officer at Rockefeller Group International, for the New Jersey/Pennsylvania Region. A 30-year veteran of the commercial real estate industry, and based in Rockefeller’s Morristown office, Shearer leads all New Jersey and Pennsylvania development operations for the company. While at Prologis, he oversaw more than 34 million square feet of industrial properties and developed 1.8 million square feet of build-to-suit and speculative industrial space. Before his work in the New York/New Jersey region, he held the same position at Prologis in the Mid-Atlantic region, managing a 15 million-square-foot industrial portfolio in Maryland, North and South Carolina, and Virginia.
Jose Cruz, Jon Mikula and Frank Recine
Jose Cruz is a senior managing director and co-head of JLL Capital Markets Americas New Jersey office. He joined JLL as part of the HFF acquisition and is a member of the firm’s leadership committee. Cruz specializes in investment advisory throughout New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. During the course of his more than 25-year commercial real estate career, he’s been involved in more than $28 billion of office, industrial, retail, multifamily and land sales. “Year in and year out, Jose Cruz is behind the high profile investment sales in New Jersey while advising some of the largest owners of real estate,” said one real estate insider. Mikula is a senior managing director and co-head of the New Jersey office of JLL Capital Markets, Americas. Like Cruz, he joined JLL as part of the HFF acquisition and serves on the firm’s leadership committee. Mikula has more than 25 years of experience in commercial real estate finance, and is primarily responsible for arranging debt and equity placement transactions. Over his career, Mikula has completed in excess of $14 billion in commercial real estate transactions. Mikula’s work complements that of Cruz. His skill as a mortgage broker has gotten him named one, if not the nicest and best, brokers in New Jersey. Completing the trio from JLL, Frank Recine is an executive managing director in the firm’s brokerage services division. He has a background in transaction structures, lease negotiations and consulting services. He is highly valued as a tenant, landlord and corporate services representative throughout the United States. Recine joined JLL from Newmark Knight Frank where he became the youngest principal during his tenure. Previously he was with CBRE, where he developed a reputation for motivation and commitment to clients and gained an in-depth knowledge of the U.S. markets. Recine has been listed on Real Estate Forum’s Top Brokers for multiple years and is recognized annually as a CoStar Power Broker.
Cocoziello is the chief executive officer and president of Advance Realty, a developer of more than 15 million square feet across all market sectors, including multifamily, industrial, retail, mixed-use and Class A office properties. Over the last three years, Cocoziello has entered the competitive industrial sector in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, compiling an 8 million square-foot pipeline, which includes the 4.1 million square foot multi-building Class A warehouse development, Linden Logistics Center; and Logan North Industrial Park, a 3.2 million square foot industrial park in Gloucester County. He is also active in New Jersey’s luxury multifamily sector developing the new Riverbend District (anchored by Red Bull Arena) on 35 acres of land adjacent to the Harrison PATH Station. And the firm recently completed Steel Works, a 286-unit luxury multifamily building, and a 280-unit luxury apartment building, Cobalt Lofts .The firm is also developing luxury apartment buildings in the prime Gold Coast market of Hoboken and The Shops at Ledgewood Commons in Ledgewood, and new retail in the form of Paramus Crossroads – a development on Route 17 South at the southbound entrance to the Garden State Parkway in the heart of New Jersey’s most active retail corridor. Advance Realty successfully repositioned the NJ Center of Excellence, a former Sanofi U.S. Research and Development Campus in Bridgewater totaling 1.2 million square feet on 110 acres.
DeMarco has served as chief executive officer of Mack-Cali since 2015 and has been a member of the board since 2018. As the leader of the largest landlord in the state, he continues to accelerate the pace of disposition of poor-performing suburban assets in the firm’s portfolio. And there has been continuous rent appreciation of Mack-Cali’s new focus on office and residential in Hoboken and Jersey City. A veteran real estate investment professional with more than 30 years of industry experience, DeMarco is responsible for the strategic direction of the company, including reimagining Jersey City’s waterfront with the creation of Harborside, a one-of-a-kind cultural district that blends premier offices, luxury living, locally inspired shopping and dining, and public spaces for the community to enjoy. Under DeMarco’s direction, Harborside recently opened a New York Waterway Ferry terminal to connect the area to Manhattan, as well as welcoming Whole Foods, with the grocery chain soon opening both a marketplace and its northeast headquarters. DeMarco has been bullish on the residential acquisitions for the company, most recently acquiring the 377-unit Soho Lofts development in Jersey City for $263.8 million. Before joining Mack-Cali, DeMarco was most recently the chief investment officer of CCRE, a nonbank finance company and one of the largest originators of CMBS. DeMarco was also an executive vice president with Vornado Realty Trust. Previously, DeMarco was a partner at Fortress Investment, overseeing a number of real estate operating companies that Fortress acquired.
As chief executive officer of Denholtz Properties, Denholtz is responsible for the strategic direction of the company as well as its capital structure, supervision of all development opportunities and spearheading business development. Under his stewardship, the company has grown to more than 60 employees and doubled the square footage it owns and manages. The company recently relocated its corporate headquarters to Red Bank where it has a number of projects in its pipeline, including the mixed-use Rail @ Red Bank Station that will help transform the borough’s west side with a diverse slate of retail, residential and office spaces. Since the firm’s move to Red Bank earlier in 2019, Denholtz Properties has become one of the borough’s most active real estate developers and community contributors.
Gene Diaz and Edwin Cohen
Gene Diaz and Edwin Cohen are known for guiding Prism Capital Partners’ distinctive, multi-dimensional focus. The firm is deeply involved in the redevelopment sector and has a record of creating value through select real estate investments and developments. Consider one of New Jersey’s highest-profile projects: the ON3 campus in Nutley and Clifton. Since Prism’s 2016 acquisition of the 116-acre former Hoffmann-La Roche site, ON3 has attracted a blue-chip list of organizations – including Ralph Lauren Corp./, Quest Diagnostics, Modern Meadow, the new Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University, Hackensack Meridian’s NIH- designated Clinical Research Center, The Hackensack Meridian Health Center for Discovery and Innovation and Seton Hall University’s Graduate College of Nursing and School of Health and Medical Sciences. Prism expects that corporate tenants and users will employ more than 5,500 people at ON3 by 2021, while the ongoing redevelopment is creating hundreds of construction jobs. To date, the 17-year-old firm, with its capital partners, has invested more than $750 million in 17 projects totaling over 5 million square feet.
Feliciano is bringing luxury to Long Branch. FEM Real Estate, of which she is the chief executive and co-founder, recently scored over $3 million for two condominiums at its South Beach development. All 47 condos in the two eight-story towers at South Beach have ocean views, and because it’s located within Long Branch’s Beachfront South redevelopment area, the project received a 10-year tax abatement which translates to over 32 percent tax savings for residents who can front the $1.5 million or $3 million price tag in that time. Before launching FEM, Feliciano was the owner and chief executive of Lincoln Park Healthcare, the largest nursing home complex in New Jersey. She and her husband Edwin are also the namesakes for Montclair State’s Feliciano School of Business.
Glenning is president of the Financial Services and Information Divisions and chief financial officer of Hackensack Meridian Health. He manages large projects, negotiates challenging situations and crafts solutions. Glenning previously served as the chief financial officer and executive vice president of the Hackensack University Health Network. Under his tenure, Hackensack University Medical Center and Hackensack University Health Network had some of the most successful financial years in history. Standard and Poor’s Rating Services upgraded its outlook on the medical center from ‘Stable’ to ‘Positive’ based on its strong leadership team and long-term strategic plans. It also re-affirmed its rating of A- on its 2008 and 2010 bonds. More recently, Glenning identified a way to help furloughed federal employees and their insured family members coping with the financial impact of the federal government shutdown. He also oversaw the implementation and upgrade of a new clinical and financial IT platform and provided financial leadership over the Hackensack Physician – Hospital Accountable Care Organization. He was jointly appointed as an inaugural member of the board of governors of the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University; and appointed as a board member of the HackensackAlliance ACO.
Glover took the helm of the nonprofit Newark Alliance just weeks before Amazon announced it would not set up its second headquarters in the Brick City. Still, city and state officials walked away with the assurance that Newark can punch above its weight when competing for new businesses and demonstrating its economic rebound, given that the city was on Amazon’s list of finalists. Glover spearheaded the city’s efforts to land Amazon’s HQ2 as part of her role as president and CEO of the Newark Community Alliance Economic Development Corp., and played no small part in projecting what Newark had to offer. Now as head of the Newark Alliance, she will be in charge of an organization serving as a nexus of the city’s important communities, including corporations, the thousands of longtime residents and the “eds and meds” of universities and hospitals. Glover has years of experience, including a track record of redeveloping the Brooklyn Navy Yard, where she served as vice president of external affairs for the Brooklyn Navy Yard Development Corp., where she oversaw public affairs, fundraising and strategic partnership development. With the federal opportunity zones garnering attention in the world of real estate and redevelopment, city and state officials are nervously considering whether the program will actually benefit local communities like Newark, or simply serve as a means of gentrification to price out longtime residents. Both Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and Gov. Phil Murphy are hoping for the former, and will ultimately look to Glover to get the job done. Nationwide, as gentrification butts heads with local and equitable redevelopment, many business executives, advocates and public officials will be looking far and wide for a success story.
Goldberg is the founder and managing member of Canoe Brook Associates, a family-owned real estate consulting and development company in Roseland. The firm run by the former founding partners of Roseland Property Co. Since the inception of Roseland, Goldberg has been responsible for securing the entitlements for the development of communities throughout the Northeast with a special emphasis on urban waterfront development. He directed Roseland’s production of more than 1,500 homes annually, and oversaw Roseland’s flagship endeavor, Port Imperial. Goldberg has a long history of political and industry-wide activism in New Jersey, with relationships with leaders throughout the state. In addition, he has been at the forefront of transit-oriented development, a movement many experts see as critical to smart, sustainable economic development. He currently serves as chairman of the New Jersey Builders Association Political Action Committee and as co-chair of the Center for Real Estate Studies at Rutgers Business School.
Joe Jingoli and Michael Jingoli
Joe Jingoli is chief executive officer of Jingoli, a construction company with experience in the energy, industrial, health care, gaming and educational sectors. He is also a partner in DCO Energy, one of the largest developers and operators of cogeneration and renewable energy projects in North America. Michael Jingoli is the CFO/COO of Jingoli, the co-founder and co-owner of a number of affiliate companies in the energy/construction space, and an owner/investor in nearly two dozen other companies. He is also the co-founder of DCO. Joe has more than three decades of expertise in construction, project management and energy development. He has a reputation throughout the construction and energy industries for his unique ability to use innovative strategies to bring projects to fruition. Michael is a recognized expert in project finance, operations and organizational development. Since partnering with his brother Joseph to take over Jingoli in 1987, the company has grown from a regional contractor to a national organization with over 1,500 employees that is regularly ranked as an industry leader with projects developed, constructed and/or owned throughout North America. Michael and Joseph, in partnership with Jack Morris and the Seminole Tribe of Florida, renovated and opened the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City on June 28, 2018. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City offers a range of gaming opportunities with 2,400 slots and 130 table games, nearly 2,000 hotel rooms and an entirely redesigned interior as well as premier entertainment options with live music, sporting events and conferences.
Kushner is the president of the Kushner Real Estate Group, which is based in Bridgewater and is one of the largest privately held diversified real estate companies in New Jersey. With more than 20 years of real estate investment and management experience, he is responsible for the acquisition and development of all new projects, property management and leasing of over 12,000 rental apartment units and 6 million square feet of office, retail, and industrial properties. He oversees the team at KRE Group that boasts a development pipeline of over 10 million square feet of residential and mixed use projects. Kushner and his team are developing more than 2,000 apartments in Hudson County and the company is working on four active development projects in Jersey City and Bayonne, including a 1 million-square-foot, 72-story tower in Journal Square. KRE continues to grow in suburban markets and has several other projects under construction throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. These projects include a 400,000 square foot industrial building near New Jersey Turnpike’s Exit 8A and other residential developments.
Lozano, the president and CEO of Choose New Jersey Inc., merits inclusion here because of the role the organization plays in Gov. Phil Murphy’s “State of Innovation,” aimed at reinventing how the state will attract business and investment into New Jersey. A legacy of former-Gov. Chris Christie, Choose New Jersey is tasked with marketing the state’s assets to businesses across the country and around the world. The nonprofit has some heavy financial backers and supporters: its board includes PSEG, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey, PNC Bank, Hackensack Meridian Health, United Airlines, Prudential Financial and RWJ Barnabas Health. The agency sponsored the Murphy administration’s 9-day economic trade mission across Germany and Israel, and most of the costs for a weeklong trip to India in September, to make the case for businesses to invest or set up shop in New Jersey. Meanwhile, the Murphy administration put Choose NJ in charge of a $3 million marketing campaign to lure businesses.
Marino has more than 35 years of experience in real estate development, general construction and construction management. He is the president of Century 21 Construction, a 50-year-old family-owned general contracting and construction management firm. Century 21 has completed millions of square feet of commercial, institutional and residential buildings, including thousands of residential apartments, condominiums and townhomes, as well as retail centers, medical buildings, schools and other higher education facilities, college dormitories, courthouses, offices, warehouses, aviation facilities and sports and recreation facilities, and stadiums. Marino is also the founder and president of JMP Holdings Corp. and co-founder and managing member of M&M Realty Partners LLC, specializing in the development of retail, industrial, commercial and residential projects primarily in New Jersey, Florida, California and throughout the United States. M&M Realty Partners LLC, a joint venture between Edgewood Properties and JMP Holdings, owns, manages and is engaged in various stages of development of over 6,000,000 square feet of retail and commercial space primarily focused on core “essential need” businesses, including supermarket-anchored shopping centers, home improvement stores, “Big Box” discount retailers such as Costco, pharmacies, banks and other general merchandising stores. M&M’s flagship redevelopments includes the revitalization of the 223-acre former Garden State Park Racetrack in Cherry Hill into the walkable mixed-use commercial, retail, office, medical, educational and residential lifestyle center that the township has sought for so long.
Andrew Merin, Gary Gabriel, David Bernhaut, Brian Whitmer and Kyle Schmidt
Cushman & Wakefield boasts a huge presence in the tri-state area – 12 offices in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut – with four outposts and 200 employees in the Garden State. The firm’s operations here have been ranked among the best in the state by its peers and by NJBIZ readers. Merin, Gabriel, Bernhaut, Whitmer and Schmidt drive C&W’s New Jersey capital markets team, which handles major transactions across the northern and central regions of the state. In fact, according to the firm, the 17-member group has been responsible for $34 billion in transactions since 2000, including $3.3 billion last year, and has won NAIOP New Jersey’s Deal of the Year award seven times.
Milanaik joined Bridge Development Partners in 2014 when he opened Bridge’s New Jersey office, bringing with him over 30 years of experience in commercial real estate. As partner for the Northeast Region, Milanaik oversees all regional acquisition and development activities, and to date has completed transactions on over 9 million square feet of the development of Bridge Point 78, called the nation’s largest industrial project of 2019. The Phillipsburg site is the former home of an Ingersoll Rand warehouse that once employed 4,000 manufacturing workers, but sat vacant for decades until Bridge acquired the site to remediate it and develop Bridge Point 78. Before joining Bridge, Milanaik was president and partner of Heller Industrial Parks Inc., one of the largest privately held industrial real estate developers in the nation. He guided Heller’s trajectory and strategic vision, and oversaw day-to-day operations. During his time there, Heller’s industrial development activity rose from 10 million square feet to 16 million square feet across six states.
As the founder and managing partner of Vision Real Estate Partners, Morreale guides the company’s overall direction and progress and oversees all aspects of acquisitions, developments and leasing. He fashions investment strategies and business plans for all of the company’s assets and investments, in addition to seeking new business opportunities. VREP’s core competencies are in redevelopment, adaptive reuse, master planning and development in the New York and New Jersey metropolitan marketplace. Typical projects range from multi-tenant buildings to single tenant national headquarters facilities. Before forming VREP and its predecessor firm, Morreale spent 10 years as one of the original senior members of the Goldman Sachs Whitehall Operating Co., which owned and operated over 15 million square feet of commercial real estate in the Northeast. Before joining Goldman, he worked for two of the largest owners/developers in the New Jersey, Philadelphia and New York markets and managed their leasing and development teams. Under Morreale’s leadership, Vision has been recognized for multiple industry awards including NAIOP Deal of the Year.
More from the 2019 NJBIZ Commercial Real Estate Power 50:
- No. 1: Jon Hanson and Jimmy Hanson
- No. 2: Don Ghermezian
- No. 3: George Norcross
- No. 4: Chris Paladino
- No. 5: Tim Sullivan
- No. 6: Leslie Anderson
- No. 7: Ed Russo
- No. 8: Jack Morris
- No. 9: Jeff Sica
- No. 10: Barry Ostrowsky
- Commercial Real Estate Power 50 N-Z
- The 2019 NJBIZ Commercial Real Estate Power 50 slideshow
Editor’s note: A previous version of this article listed Peter Crovo as chief investment officer for NFI Real Estate. He is not, Crovo is the chief operating officer for Seagis Property Group LP.