Name: Lee Silpe
Title: COO | Senior Analyst
Company/firm: Berko & Associates
Year Company was founded: 2005
Years with company/firm: 4
Years in field: 4
Years in real estate industry: 4
Address: 18 East 41st St, New York, NY
Which project, deal or transaction was the “game changer” in the advancement of your career?
The transaction that meant the most to the advancement of my career was contracting a 170,000 s/f industrial loft building in Bushwick, Brooklyn. The negotiations took almost a year before putting into a hard contract. The deal taught me how to persevere on a deal, and also how to get to know and understand the wants and needs of all of the parties involved. The building is slated to become a creative loft office space that will attract a slew of young companies and subsequently new job opportunities in one of the fastest growing neighborhoods in NYC.
Who or what has been the strongest influence on your career and why?
The strongest influence on my career has been the principal at Berko & Associates Joe Berko. He took a chance and gave me the opportunity at age 24 to be a senior analyst in an office of 15 seasoned associates. A few years later, Joe and our other two directors, who have also played a role in my development, and myself, have grown the company. Now with a staff of 24 employees, as COO/partner, I oversee the operations and manage the office. Joe gave me 110% support when needed, but took a laissez-faire approach that allowed me to learn and grow.
Where would you like to be 10 years from today?
As Berko grows, we hope to be more full-service to our clients, offering new solutions to make us even more of a “one-stop shop.” The executives at the company are in the preliminary stages of forming an investment fund, which I am a partner in. In 10 years, I believe that I will oversee the management of the company and we will triple the business we do today, in addition to a bevy of enterprises tied to the company so we can support our clients in all of their own ventures.