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The Columbia Business School Real Estate Association (REA) is pleased to announce the co-presidents and vice presidents elected for the 2076–18 academic year. The officers, all in the class of 2018, were elected by the REA membership. Assistant vice presidents will be elected from the incoming class in the fall.
Jonny A. Cohen
Jonny A. Cohen graduated Summa Cum Laude from the George Washington University with a BBA in Finance and Economics. After graduating he spent three years in real estate investment banking, first with Morgan Stanley in London before moving to J.P. Morgan in New York. Jonny spent his last year and a half before business school with Cohen Equities, a real estate private equity family business. At Cohen Equities Jonny focused on acquisitions, dispositions and refinancing of commercial properties across the country.
Sam Fenwick graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a BA and MPA in Accounting. After graduating, he worked in investment banking for BMO Capital Markets where he analyzed the strategic rationale of potential mergers, acquisitions, and financing alternatives for public companies in the energy industry. Sam then spent four years as an Associate with Three Rivers, an oil-and-gas portfolio company of Riverstone Holdings. As a key member of the corporate development team, he helped to source deals, develop investment theses, lead acquisition presentations to management, and conduct due diligence on total bids in excess of $1 billion and total closings in excess of $400 million. This summer he will be in Los Angeles interning with CIM Group in their Investments Department.
Alumni & Mentorship
Stephanie Deutsch is a Los Angeles native and second-year student focusing on real estate investment and development at Columbia Business School. After graduating with a degree in Business Studies and Art History at New York University, Stephanie spent four years working in product development and global marketing at L’Oréal. In addition to her role as VP of Alumni & Mentorship in the REA, she also serves as the President of the Hospitality and Travel Association. This summer, Stephanie will be interning at Brookfield Asset Management in its hotel investment group.
Cindy Lin graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. in Hotel Administration and a minor in Real Estate. Prior to business school, Cindy worked in real estate acquisitions at Clarion Partners in New York City, covering all asset types across the Northeast, Midwest, and Texas. Cindy is in the J-term program and will be taking classes full-time this summer.
Isabella Lin is a first-year MBA student at Columbia Business School. Prior to Columbia, Isabella worked as an Investment Associate at CIM Group, a real estate and infrastructure private equity firm with approximately $18.8 billion in assets under management. Prior to joining CIM, Isabella spent 2 years in the Private Investments team in DUMAC, where she was actively involved in multiple venture capital, private equity, and real estate fund and co-investment transactions. Isabella graduated from Duke University with High Distinction in Economics.
Mark Abramowicz graduated from Tufts University in 2010 with a BS in Quantitative Economics and a minor in Entrepreneurship. Prior to Columbia Business School, he co-founded two real estate technology ventures in Boston, MA and was an early employee at another. He will be interning at Tishman Speyer in New York this summer.
Communications & Technology
Sofia Zamora Palacios
Sofia is a second year mba student focused on real estate finance and technology. Prior to business school, Sofia worked for four years as a structural engineering project manager specializing on fast track and historical restoration projects in Boston, MA. Prior to restoration, Sofia worked on infrastructure and transportation design. Sofia is a registered professional engineer and she holds a B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering with High Distinction from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Sofia also serves on the Silfen Leadership Board and she is excited to be interning at UDR this summer.
Zach Gorn graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2011, where he was a double major in Economics and Psychology. He then worked for 2 years at Analysis Group, a national economic consulting firm, before joining his family’s real estate development business in Baltimore, MD, where he worked for 3 years before coming to Columbia Business School. Zach is focused on real estate development and investment at Columbia.
Elliott Fry received degrees in both Real Estate and Finance from the University of Georgia. He spent his post-collegiate career working as an Associate for Mercer Investments conducting manager due diligence and advising institutional clients on real estate manager selection, allocation and strategy implementation. This summer, he will be joining KUAST Investment Management Company’s real estate team. He is a first-year student focusing on real estate finance and acquisitions and a CFA Level III Candidate.
Eric Schaffer is a New Jersey native and a first-year student focused on real estate investment and development at Columbia Business School. After graduating from Emory University, Eric worked for Cushman & Wakefield's Shanghai office, where he helped lead the China Investment & Capital Markets division for several years. In 2015, he co-founded Core Capital Asia, a pure-play cross border real estate investment advisory firm focused on channeling outbound China-centric capital to real estate projects in key global markets. After Columbia he intends to maintain a global focus in real estate investment on the principal side of the industry.
Jeff Harrington is from Medfield, Massachusetts and graduated from Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Civil Engineering. Prior to enrolling at Columbia Business School, Jeff worked in the Boston area in various engineering roles at FM Global, a large commercial property insurance company. At FM Global, Jeff assisted a wide range of clients with assessing, managing, and mitigating property risk. Jeff holds a Professional Engineer’s (P.E.) License in fire protection in the State of Massachusetts and he also serves as a Career Fellow at Columbia Business School.
Elena Richermo is originally from Italy and she is focusing on Real Estate at Columbia Business School. Elena earned a BS and a MS in Civil Engineering both from Politecnico di Milano, with a focus on Structural Engineering. After graduating, she worked as a management consultant for 3 years, first in Strategy& and then in McKinsey. She was involved in several banking, energy and retail projects, working for some of the most important Italian companies. Elena is attending her MBA in the expedited J-term program and will be taking classes full-time during summer, planning for a part-time internship in the fall.
Ricki Shenfeld holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania where she graduated with honors in 2013. Prior to enrolling at Columbia, Ricki worked in Acquisitions and Capital Markets at DDG, a luxury real estate developer based in Manhattan with offices in San Francisco and Palm Beach. While at DDG she worked on existing developments in all three regions. Before working at DDG she was an Associate at Deutsche Bank in the Debt Capital Markets/Derivatives Solutions group covering Technology, Media & Telecom companies. Ricki is involved in a number of philanthropic endeavors including UJA Federation where she serves as a board member of Generosity Young Leadership. Ricki is excited to be joining Silverstein Properties over the summer in the Acquisitions & Development group.
Mandy Yeung graduated from the University of Southern California with a B.S. in Civil Engineering. After graduation, she worked as a project engineer at Turner Construction for 5 years, managing ground-up construction projects such as the New York Police Academy, 28-10 Jackson Avenue, 7 Bryant Park, and the Cornell Co-location Building on Roosevelt Island. This summer, Mandy will be interning at DDG Partners, focusing on real estate development in New York.