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Great Conversations

Thursday, October 8, 2020
6:30 pm – 8:15 pm

Ross Chomik – Vision Real Estate Partners, Managing Partner
Responsible for the business planning and growth strategies, development, redevelopment, acquisitions and leasing, Ross has positioned Vision Real Estate Partners as a leader in experiential workplace design and development. Throughout his career, he has directed development, redevelopment and leasing of over 8 million square feet of properties and over $1 billion in office, industrial, retail properties and portfolios, serving the needs of such leading corporations such as Bayer Healthcare (North American Headquarters), Alcatel Lucent, Metlife, and Barclays. At the Warren Corporate Center, a five building office campus, he led the creation of a 20,000 square-foot lifestyle center, resulting in Everest Reinsurance taking 315,000 square feet of space at the campus, the largest office lease in New Jersey in 2019.  Current projects include the redevelopment, with new creative spaces and amenities, of the Latitude campus, 1776 on the Green, Northpoint, and a Tabor Rd. class A office space in Morris Plains. Under Ross’s leadership, Vision’s Bayer project and Metlife’s build-to-suit were separately awarded the New Jersey NAIOP Deal of the Year Award, the NJBIA New Good Neighbor Award, the United Way Commercial Real Estate Impact Award, and Morris County (NJ) Deal of the Year.

Roger Smith – Gensler, Design Director
Roger has over 30 years of experience with a broad range of projects, from master planning and mixed-use developments to corporate interiors, housing, museums, and hotels. His work includes both local and International projects that have taken him to Europe, Asia and the Middle East, which has contributed to his fascination with the traditions of architecture from around the world. Currently a Design Director at Gensler’s Morristown office, he also shares his love for architecture as an adjunct professor at the Weitzman School of Design at UPENN, the Hillier College of Architecture and Design at NJIT, and the Michael Graves College at Kean University, encouraging students to explore design while building an understanding of the links between theory and practice. He has also served on the faculty of Center for Creative Placemaking, an organization that integrates arts and culture into community design and planning. In his free time, Roger enjoys the outdoors—kayaking, camping, and backpacking. He also brings his passion for design to his personal interests, which include painting and the theatre.

Mark Wilsmann – MetLife Investment Management, Managing Director, Real Estate Investments
Over his 35-year career, Mark has been involved in over $100 billion of commercial real estate investments across office, retail, apartments, logistics, and hotels, including the development of premier projects in cities like San Francisco, Chicago, Dallas, Miami, Atlanta, and Washington DC.   With an educational background in the social sciences, he has a fascination for identifying trends in demographics, technology, and human behavior, including values, tastes and preferences affecting how and where people desire to work, live, shop, and play – and predicting the impact on cities and commercial real estate development.   In recent years, through his leadership role in the Urban Land Institute, he has become active in the questions of sustainability and resiliency — in particular the impact of global warming on cities, real estate economics, and population migration. As the father of four independent, geographically diverse millennials embodying political views ranging from staunchly conservative to progressively liberal, holiday gatherings can get a little testy.   Mark enjoys the outdoors, good wine, international travel (business and pleasure), live music, movies and theater.   After a long and rewarding career, he is also beginning to think about plans for the next chapter of his life.