As part of a continuing series, here is a quick Q&A with one of our leading members and top-tier sponsors, Beryl Simonson, Partner at McGladrey, LLP:
How long have you been a ULI member? I have been a ULI member for four years and serve on the Advisory Board.
What has being a ULI member done for you professionally or personally? ULI presents an opportunity to meet people who work in different aspects of my same field. My accounting practice is primarily real estate so ULI has given me an opportunity to connect with people. Real estate development is an area in which I have an interest, so ULI has enabled me to learn more about trends and specific projects.
How does your firm work with real estate companies? We are their auditors, business consultants and tax consultants.
What would you be doing if you weren’t involved in real estate? I’d be a marathon runner — a slow one! I’ve run four marathons; my best time is 4 hours and 16 minutes. I also love real estate development so if I weren’t involved in auditing I may become a developer myself.
What types of developments interest you? I love old buildings and how they can be preserved, so I am very interested in historic rehab, historic tax credit transactions, and of course the results. I live and work in two beautiful old buildings that have been revitalized.
What do you see as the biggest land use challenge here? We need to learn from other cities such as New York how to effectively solve the challenge of working with labor unions to enable development at reasonable costs. We can also learn from others about how to reduce the amount of litigation and time it takes to develop in this market, which would lead to a much stronger economy for everyone.