Call them millennials or young professionals — they call themselves developing leaders. And in the commercial real estate industry in Albuquerque, they are quickly organizing.
Three leaders — Josh Rogers, Clayton King and Chris Clepper — have taken the reins of a newly refreshed NAIOP – New Mexico group for the younger set. NAIOP is the commercial real estate development association with a very active local chapter that holds events throughout the year, gathering real estate executives and those that do business with them in the public and private sector.
The “Developing Leaders” trio say it was David Silverman that reset the framework for the group last year. Silverman is part of Geltmore Group with his developer-father Paul Silverman. The Silvermans are a big part of the force that is bringing Downtown a grocery store — part of a bigger project under construction now.
Rogers is president of the group and the development project manager at Titan Development. He says there are currently a couple dozen active members, and the goal this year is a big increase. Titan’s president, Drew Dolan, is an alumni of the group and is involved in helping to drive new membership this year.
“We network, exchange ideas, put together functions and are aggressively reaching out to juniors and seniors at [UNM’s] Anderson School,” said Rogers, adding that the group landed a PepsiCo sponsorship that allows a discounted $19 annual membership to college students. Programs include tours of big commercial projects under development; a summer brewery operation tour with of Marble Brewery; and mentor lunches with business leaders like Gary Oppedahl, the city’s economic development leader.
Clepper is a vice president and business services manager for Nusenda Credit Union and says he brings a banker’s view to the operation. He says there are many finance-related executives involved in NAIOP events, and his 10 years in the industry have shown him how it touches all aspects of a real estate deal.
King, a senior adviser at NAI Maestas & Ward, has made a name for himself in retail in the Albuquerque market. Last summer a much talked about presentation he gave as part of a NAIOP retail panel showed the effect of millennials on that segment of the market. “There’s that drumbeat of millennials leaving Albuquerque, and we want to show that in the commercial real estate fields there are opportunities here and throughout the state,” said King, who came to the Duke City via San Antonio, Texas. “We ask: ‘What does it take to do business in New Mexico, and what do millennials want?’”
The trio have organized a membership drive event March 26 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Q Bar at Hotel Albuquerque at Old Town. Dolan will speak at the event, which is also sponsored by Rosemont Realty. Information about the group is available online, or by contacting Rogers at (505) 362-6047 or via email at email@example.com. A new Facebook page for the group has been set up too.
By: Damon Scott, Reporter-Albuquerque Business First