Tag Archives: Megan Creecy-Herman

LBAPhxIndustrial, WEB

BOMA Greater Phoenix hosts inaugural industrial summit

The industrial market is hot, leading the way for both investment and development prospects in 2014 with expected prospects rising to almost the same level as the apartment sector last year.

BOMA International is partnering with BOMA/Greater Phoenix to present its first Industrial Summit on Nov. 5 at the Renaissance Hotel Downtown Phoenix, 50 E. Adams St.

Registrants can hear from leaders in the industrial sector including developers, owners, CEOs, property managers and brokers in this half-day program which kicks off with a networking breakfast. The event is 7:30 to 11:30 a.m. Panelists will cover:

  • Current development opportunities;

  • Market trends and drivers;

  • Property management trends and challenges;

  • Attracting new talent to this growing sector.

Panelists include Bob Hubbard, Vice President, Designated Broker, LBA Realty;
Tony Lydon, National Director Industrial, Supply Chain & Logistics, JLL;
Megan Creecy-Herman, Sr. Director, Liberty Property Trust and NAIOP 2014 Chairman; Mark Bowen, Vice President, Regional Director, DCT Industrial Trust;
Anna Riley, Regional Director of Management, Ryan Companies US; and
Gene Laramee, Director Asset Services, CBRE.

For more information: www.BOMAPhoenix.org.

Event registration.

 

Megan Creecy-Herman

Megan Creecy-Herman takes the helm of NAIOP-AZ

Megan Creecy-Herman, Senior Director, Leasing & Development at Liberty Property Trust, has worked in commercial real estate for 11 years, 10 of which have been as a member of NAIOP. In 2013, the 33-year-old was the first female chair of NAIOP Arizona and one of the youngest in the country to hold that position. She was recently asked to sit on the NAIOP National Executive Committee and will once again sit on the National Board of Directors next year.

“I am very proud to be working with such an esteemed group of national leaders from around the country in an effort to continue to strengthen NAIOP nationally,” she says.

You were also the first recipient of NAIOP’s Developing Leaders Award, for which you were a founding chairperson. Was chairwoman a role you sought?

Yes, I was the founding chairperson of the NAIOP Developing Leaders in 2009 and it was really through my leadership of that group that I was selected to serve on the Arizona and national NAIOP boards. My work ethic has always been one of the traits that has set me apart. When I joined NAIOP Arizona’s board of directors in 2010, I didn’t necessarily set out to become chairwoman. I just went to work at giving 110 percent for the organization. It was really through the past chairmen witnessing my dedication and my leadership skills [that I became chairwoman].

A few of the former chairmen were at the helm during trying times. How would you describe the state of the industry during your term?

I’ve been on the Arizona Chapter Board of Directors since 2010, so I remember what it was like for our board and the respective chairmen to navigate such a challenging market. I was the corporate sponsorship chair on the Board of Directors during that period and fundraising was challenging to say the least. Fortunately, the market has continued to recover this year and our membership is feeling optimistic about where the industry is headed. We actually set the record for the most money ever raised through corporate sponsorship this year at $610,000, which blew away the prior record of $525,000 in 2008.

You’ve been credited with a clear agenda for NAIOP’s educational goals. How have those progressed under your term?

Very well. Our signature speaker event featuring Billy Beane from the Oakland A’s was very successful. We’ve also continued our partnership with the ASU Masters in Real Estate Development (MRED) program where we bring industry leaders in to speak to the MRED students on various topics, and we’ve received very positive feedback on that program as well. We have a new education committee this year and they have done a tremendous job in overseeing both of these programs as well as planning our quarterly Market Leaders Series events and also planning our Tempe market tour.

What are other achievements or goals you’ve started working toward as chairwoman?

Strengthening NAIOP’s public relations efforts has also been a goal of mine this year. We have a new communications committee, and they have done a great job executing on our plan to increase NAIOP Arizona’s brand recognition throughout the broader business community while also building stronger ties between NAIOP and all of the local media outlets. Ensuring that NAIOP Arizona’s voice is heard throughout the Phoenix business community is very important to me.

What are two things you find most interesting about the Arizona market right now?

First, that it’s as bifurcated as it is. When it comes to office product, no two submarkets are created equal and that’s extremely evident when looking at Tempe versus the rest of the market. The overall office vacancy rate stands at 17.7 percent and Tempe’s vacancy rate is less than 9 percent and less than 4 percent when it comes to class-A product. It will be interesting to see whether other submarkets can get some momentum going as our recovery continues.

Secondly, the fact that our industrial recovery is becoming more widespread across submarkets and sizes is interesting and encouraging. In 2013, we saw a very pronounced shift in demand from the larger big box tenants who were in the market from the end of 2011 through the beginning of 2013 to the smaller regional tenants in the +/- 15,000 SF to +/- 80,000 SF range, with those users predominantly focused in the airport submarkets and east Valley. During the third quarter, however, we have started to see activity pick up again in the southwest Valley as well, which is a positive indicator for 2015, especially considering that summer is always the slowest time of year in Phoenix.
 
What is NAIOP’s position and effect on the market?

NAIOP Arizona is the preeminent commercial real estate organization in Arizona. The fact that we have the diverse and experienced Board of Directors that we do helps us to continually monitor the pulse of our market and ensure that we’re providing our members with what they need, whether it be education on what’s happening in the market now or providing opportunities to network with the key players who are doing deals.

tree-of-hands

Networking with a cause

Last fall, Rachel Luttrell was standing in front of a grill at a Central Arizona Shelter Services (CASS) campus in the midst of monsoon season. She was volunteering at one of NAIOP’s Dream Team barbecues that fed more than 10,000 homeless individuals last year. The grills were having a hard time staying lit, and she recalls the smell of smoke filling her clothes.

“I felt defeated,” Luttrell says. “We grabbed the batch of burgers to refill the serving line and were greeted by volunteers and CASS clients smiling. The smoke smell no longer smelled foul; it smelled delicious! A few clients raised their hands in the air and welcomed the rain on their skin. No frowns, just joy!”

Luttrell, a senior property manager at ACP Property Services and philanthropy chair for NAIOP Arizona’s Developing Leaders Chapter for professionals under the age of 35, says the moment reminded her to be thankful for the food, shelter and support network she has. Developing Leaders hosts five to 10 events a year, including a Halloween costume drive for UMOM, a “Feeding the Homeless” event at CASS and an event that benefits Children’s Cancer Network.

“We realize the importance of strong community in the success of future generations,” Luttrell says.

Most of Developing Leaders’ events, like NAIOP’s Dream Teams, founded in 2013, cap at 30 people. However, Luttrell points out that most networking events that reach much larger groups of NAIOP members can be turned into a philanthropic opportunity (i.e. making admission to an event nonperishable food).

Above: Cushman & Wakefield of Arizona staffers (left to right) Blaine Black, Bonnie Machen, Greg Valladao and Patrick Devine flip burgers on the grills at the Human Services Campus in Phoenix.

Cushman & Wakefield of Arizona staffers (left to right) Blaine Black, Bonnie Machen, Greg Valladao and Patrick Devine flip burgers on the grills at the Human Services Campus in Phoenix.

“It was recognized early on that NAIOP’s members are actively involved in the communities they live and work therefore philanthropy was a natural addition to the existing advocacies. The Developing Leaders felt building relationships occurs best when you are alongside each other, stripped of titles and suites, working together for a common cause.”

Charity is a relatively recent addition to the NAIOP Arizona chapter. In 2008, Megan Creecy-Herman established Developing Leaders’ philanthropy committee, which pre-dates NAIOP Arizona’s own official adoption of charitable efforts in 2010.

Legacy Capital Advisors Principal Keaton Merrell points out that the chapter has engaged in philanthropic events over the years, but didn’t make it a part of annual programming until four years ago. In that time, the chapter has raised about $150,000 for charitable causes through its annual Crawfish Boil benefiting Ryan House and has served about 23,000 meals to homeless individuals. In 2013, NAIOP established Dream Teams, groups of 30 volunteers comprised of about 10 people from three firms, who get together once a month to barbecue burgers and hot dogs for the homeless.

In 2013, NAIOP Arizona fed more than 10,000 homeless people as member firms volunteered on 12 Friday afternoons. Given the name “Dream Teams,” NAIOP Arizona members this year have fed almost 3,000 homeless people.

In 2013, NAIOP Arizona fed more than 10,000 homeless people as member firms volunteered on 12 Friday afternoons. Given the name “Dream Teams,” NAIOP Arizona members this year have fed almost 3,000 homeless people.

“It is always great to see a Dream Team with volunteers who have never done it before and see them team up to feed 800 homeless people,” Merrell says. “Seeing this massive line of people that you are feeding is very gratifying. People that show up for the first time literally had no idea they would be affecting that many people.”

There’s literally a quarter-mile-long line of homeless, says Chuck Vogel, senior vice president of real estate joint ventures and dispositions at American Realty Capital Properties, Inc.
“Until you go down [to 12th and Madison avenues] and do it the first time, you don’t even get it,” he says.

Just wrapping up its first year, word has spread and there’s a waiting list to get assigned to a Dream Team. Currently, there are more volunteers than space to feed the homeless. Registration costs about $75 per volunteer.

“It’s funny,” Vogel says. “We send a follow-up email with photos, and we get phone calls from people saying, ‘Hey we want to go, too.’ It’s almost a competition. They see who has participated. It’s more about who isn’t on that list. Not who is on it.”

Liberty Center at Rio Salado is a partnership between Liberty Property Trust and Markham Contracting Co.

Liberty Center at Rio Salado completes first building

From the left to right on the couch: Mayor Mark Mitchell of Tempe, Megan Creecy-Herman (Liberty Property Trust) , John DiVall (Liberty Property Trust), Andrew Ching (City of Tempe). From left to right back row: Alex Smith (City of Tempe), Shannon Selby (City of Tempe), and Ryan Levesque (City of Tempe).

From the left to right on the couch: Mayor Mark Mitchell of Tempe, Megan Creecy-Herman (Liberty Property Trust) , John DiVall (Liberty Property Trust), Andrew Ching (City of Tempe). From left to right back row: Alex Smith (City of Tempe), Shannon Selby (City of Tempe), and Ryan Levesque (City of Tempe).

Liberty Property Trust announced that it has completed the construction of its 155,000 square foot Class A office building, located at 1850 W. Rio Salado Parkway in Tempe.  The building opening marks Liberty’s first of up to potentially 11 buildings planned at Liberty Center at Rio Salado, and officially launches the innovative mixed-use business park.

 

Liberty also welcomes WageWorks, the first tenant in the brand new state-of-the art sustainable building. WageWorks is occupying the first floor of the building and the second floor of approximately 78,000 square feet is still available for lease.

 

“This has been a very exciting project for us and we have been looking forward to the official opening of Liberty Center at Rio Salado,” said John DiVall, senior vice president and city manager for Liberty’s Arizona region. “We have long believed that the live-work-play concept of the park will be of tremendous appeal to prospective companies looking to enhance their employees overall work environment.”

 

The building features energy-efficient glazing, a minimum ten-foot ceiling height, an elegant open lobby, teak-stone throughout the interior and exterior of the building, state-of-the-art telecommunications and fiber optics, and six-per-1,000 parking. Twenty percent of the building’s construction materials consist of recycled content, including the concrete, steel, carpet, ceiling tiles and similar materials. The building also features a 10kw solar panel array.

 

The architect for the building is RSP Architects, the general contractor is Wespac Construction, and the civil

engineer is Wood/Patel.

 

In addition to the building’s official opening, now on display at the entrance to the park on Rio Salado Parkway are three unique Agave Torch sculptures, ranging in size from 13’, 15’ and 17’, which were designed and created by local artist and well-known sculptor Kevin S. Berry. The base of each torch is reminiscent of saguaro cacti and the baskets of each torch pay tribute to the Hohokam Indian tribe. The blue-green glass in the base of each torch represents the water from the Salt River on which the project is located and all three sculptures are internally illuminated at night.

 

The company celebrated the opening of its building at a broker event held last night. In attendance at the event were top brokers from the area, in addition to several local representatives from the city including Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell and Tempe City Council members Robin Arredondo-Savage, Kolby Granville and Corey Woods. Liberty Property Trust’s John DiVall, senior vice president and city manager, Megan Creecy-Herman, senior director of leasing and development, and Jay Ohanesian, senior project manager were joined by Jim Lutz, senior vice president of development for Liberty Property Trust (nationally) and the rest of the Arizona Liberty Property Trust team at the evening’s event.

Megan Creecy

Executive Q-and-A: Megan Creecy-Herman

Megan Creecy-Herman
Senior Director, Leasing & Development, Liberty Property Trust

Years in CRE: 11
Years at company: 1.5

What was it about the industry that attracted you?
The excitement of building a career in an industry where I knew that no two days would be the same. Our industry is dynamic and constantly evolving with the broader economy as companies’ logistics and office needs change and become more sophisticated. It is really the dynamic nature of our industry that first attracted me to commercial real estate, and it has been the excitement of watching our industry evolve that has kept me in the industry for more than 10 years.

How has the industry changed since you started?
I entered the industry in 2003 and to say that things have changed since then would be an understatement. Our industry has evolved in many ways, not only due to the economic downturn we experienced from 2008 to 2011, but also due to changes in the way companies do business. Since the beginning of the last recession in late 2008 we have seen many themes including a flight to quality, tighter lending standards and a sharp decrease in the velocity of new development. With regards to how business has evolved, we continue to see the impact of e-commerce on our industry and how it continues to shrink the footprint of retail big box space. In addition, the needs of e-commerce users are driving the evolution of big box warehouses with a focus on energy efficiency, higher clear heights and more strategically located distribution centers in order to deliver product to the consumer faster. In the office sector, there has been a growing trend toward more open floor plates and increased energy efficiency. These needs are translating into increased productivity, lower build-out cost and higher parking ratios.

Of what professional achievement are you most proud?
I would have to say my Master of Business Administration (MBA), which I received from the University of Arizona. I pursued my MBA through a 20-month accelerated program while working full-time and serving in leadership roles in NAIOP Arizona, NAIOP National and the Junior League of Phoenix. The experience was invaluable.

Megan Creecy

Liberty Property Trust’s Megan Creecy-Herman Installed as NAIOP-AZ Chairman

A bit of history was made on Friday, November 22 when the first woman to serve as chairman of the Arizona chapter of NAIOP (National Association of Commercial Real Estate Development), Megan Creecy-Herman of Liberty Property Trust, was sworn in at the organization’s annual board retreat.
“Since the day she joined, Megan has brought a tremendous amount of energy and dynamism to NAIOP-AZ,” said organization president, Tim Lawless. “In 2009 she served as the founding chairperson of our Developing Leaders Group for commercial real estate professionals age 35 and under; in 2010 her peers voted that she be named the first recipient of the NAIOP Arizona Chapter Developing Leaders Award. Her work in developing continuing education, focus on increasing diversity in commercial real estate, and commitment to her profession make her a tremendous asset to NAIOP-AZ and we are excited for her as she begins her term.”
Creecy-Herman takes over with what Lawless calls a “clear agenda” for improving the chapter’s educational opportunities. One of her goals is to bring back a “signature speaker” series; another is to offer programs for CLE credit. She is an accomplished fundraiser who has spearheaded the raising of more than $500,000 to help pay for large-scale NAIOP-AZ networking events.
Creecy-Herman serves as Liberty’s director of leasing and development in Arizona and is responsible for marketing the company’s portfolio and working on existing and future development projects throughout the Valley. Since joining the company in mid-2012, she has been responsible for Liberty’s complete renovation of 2626 S. 7th Street in Phoenix, now known as Liberty Sky Harbor Center; lease transactions totaling more than 350,000 square feet; and assistance with the acquisition of two key properties: a nearly completed 593,600 square foot warehouse currently known as Liberty Logistics Center I, and, in a separate deal, 73 acres of land currently known as Liberty Logistics Center II, both in the highly desirable Southwest Phoenix Industrial submarket.
John DiVall, senior vice president at Liberty Property Trust and a previous NAIOP-AZ chairman noted that “Megan is a consummate professional and brings tremendous insight into what motivates individuals and groups. Her enthusiasm is contagious and it is exciting to contemplate what the organization will be able accomplish during her term as president.”
Before joining Liberty, Creecy-Herman served at EJM Development Co. in Phoenix, where she held various positions in leasing, acquisitions and development. A graduate of Arizona State University, Creecy-Herman earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Business. She earned her Masters of Business Administration from the University of Arizona.
In addition to serving on the NAIOP Arizona Chapter Board of Directors, she is a past member of the NAIOP Corporate Board of Directors and is an active member of the Junior League of Phoenix, as well as the Arizona State University Real Estate Alumni Club.