Marilynn A. Davis

Marilynn helps to conceptualize and implement dynamic real estate projects that create vital places and build more equitable and resilient communities.

Immediately before joining HR&A in March 2022, Marilynn was Chief Real Estate Officer at Clark Atlanta University, the first to hold that newly-created role, where she led the optimization of the University’s real estate portfolio, strategizing the commercial development of its 50+ acres of underutilized off-campus assets. A key objective of the CAU development strategy was to generate accretive, long-term revenues to the University through thoughtful projects that are regenerative and that create opportunity for disinvested communities.

Marilynn’s career has placed her in leadership positions along a range of industry platforms, most recently addressing the dynamics of cities and their impact on the built environment. Among these have been Managing Director of the New York office of IMC Octave, a real estate development subsidiary of industrial conglomerate IMC Pan-Asia Alliance; Chief Executive Officer at landscape architecture firm, Martha Schwartz Partners; and Assistant Secretary of Administration at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, nominated by President Clinton, and confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Her earlier experiences were in global business, including FleetBoston Financial Corporation (now a part of Bank of America), American Express Corporation and General Motors Corporation.

Marilynn has served on several boards or in advisory roles related to the arts, architecture, and cities, including the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Skyscraper Museum (NYC), Open House New York, the NY/NJ Regional Planning Association’s Community Planning and Development Committee and the World Policy Institute’s Emerging Cities Project. She is a member of the University Development and Innovation Council of the Urban Land Institute. She was selected as a Fellow of the David Rockefeller Program of the New York City Partnership, and was later recruited to serve on its Advisory Committee. Her previous for-profit board experience was at Loop!, a telecommunications affiliate of Covad Communications, based in Barcelona, Spain.

Marilynn earned her B.A. from Smith College, Masters degrees in economics from both the University of Michigan and Washington University in St. Louis, and an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School.

Derek Fleming

Derek brings over 20 years of experience managing public-private developments that create value and preserve community culture.

Derek Fleming bring his skills in deal structuring, negotiations, capital raising, business development strategies, and community engagement to HR&A. Derek plays a leadership role in grappling with how, as the economic effects of COVID-19 persist, policymakers will assure that the recovery doesn’t exacerbate the economic disparity that COVD-19 has uncovered, but rather creates a new paradigm for equity in urban redevelopment. Working to re-align approaches to development in communities of color, he focuses on crafting deals that assure successful outcomes for all.

Prior to joining HR&A, Derek has had a career spanning both private and public sector. For the past five years Derek has served as Managing Partner of MSDG, LLC, where he and his partner, Miami-based developer Michael Simkins, focus on urban infill and community-oriented sustainable redevelopment projects. During this time, he co-led a team advising the City of Miami on a redevelopment strategy for the Historic Overtown Cultural & Entertainment District and managed the development and adaptive re-use construction of an historic building for entertainment purposes. Prior to MSDG, Derek served as VP of Development of MSG, LLC, working with business partner Chef Marcus Samuelsson to launch a global hospitality business. Derek led design & construction and business development for enterprises such as Red Rooster, where he is a partner.

Derek’s 12 years of public sector experience focused on neighborhood revitalization and economic development. At Empire State Development, NY State’s economic development agency, Derek managed a NY Empowerment Zone public lending portfolio of $60 million for real estate and business development transactions in some of New York City’s most economically marginalized neighborhoods, in particular Harlem and the Bronx. During his four years as Project Manager for the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, Derek successfully led a team through the entitlement and re-zoning of the 300-acre underdeveloped Mission Bay brownfield site, leading to the development of over 1,500 affordable housing units as well as retail, commercial, hotel and market-rate housing.

Derek holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Berkeley and an MBA from Kellogg School of Management. In addition to his role as Senior Advisor at HR&A, Derek is senior board member of the Neighborhood Charter School Harlem & the Bronx.

Martha Welborne

For over 30 years, Martha has designed and delivered transformative projects by integrating public and private interests to improve cities.

Martha Welborne is a nationally-recognized leader in urban development. Her exceptional career as a civic and organizational change-maker has spanned the country, with a focus on complex development and mobility management in Los Angeles. With experience in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors, Martha has spearheaded some of Los Angeles’ most innovative public transportation and revitalization projects in recent history—including the installation of the county’s first rapid bus lines and the redevelopment of the Grand Avenue corridor.

Prior to joining HR&A, Martha was the Senior Vice President of Corporate Real Estate for the Walt Disney Company, where she oversaw all corporate real estate development, design, construction; asset and portfolio management; and facilities support and services. From 2010-2016, Martha served as the Chief Planning Officer at the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro). Responsible for planning the long-range mobility future of the county, Martha led a staff of more than 200 to accelerate the delivery of voter-approved projects funded by Measure R and execute strategic initiatives, such as the Master Plan of the historic Union Station property. From 2001-2011, Martha was the Managing Director of the Grand Avenue Committee, a public/private initiative involving both the City and County of Los Angeles to spur cultural and mixed-use private development on Bunker Hill in downtown Los Angeles, including the redevelopment of Grand Park.

Martha began her career as an architect and planner, working on both individual building design and large-scale projects as an associate partner of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP and a principal of Sasaki Associates, Inc. She has served on the board of the Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority and as President of the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. Martha is a former member of MIT’s Visiting Committee for the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, the Board of the Community Foundation Land Trust, and the Board of Councilors for USC’s School of Architecture and for KUSC.

Martha earned a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from the University of Notre Dame, and Master’s degrees in both Architecture and City Planning from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She was also a Loeb Fellow at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design and is a member of the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects.

Carl Weisbrod

With over 40 years of experience in public service and urban development, Carl’s distinguished career is a testament to his commitment to building equitable, resilient, and economically vibrant communities.

Carl Weisbrod is a national authority on city planning, affordable housing policy, urban development, and public-private real estate development. In his four decades of experience, Carl has brokered and led complex public-private partnerships and created innovative governance strategies to spur economic development. His record of visionary, innovative, and successful urban development initiatives has made him an internationally sought-after advisor.

Throughout his career guiding public agencies and transformative development initiatives, Carl has served the City of New York in many capacities– most recently, as Chairman of the New York City Planning Commission and Director of the New York City Department of City Planning. Prior to these appointments, Carl was a Partner at HR&A, where he managed the successful rezoning of the Hudson Square area in Manhattan, which has transformed the neighborhood into a dynamic hub for creative industries and new housing, including up to 700 affordable units.

Preceding his initial tenure at HR&A, Carl led efforts to revitalize two of New York City’s most iconic neighborhoods – Times Square, from the late 1970’s through the early 1990’s, and Lower Manhattan, both pre- and post-9/11. His former positions include: President of New York State’s 42nd Street Development Project; Founding President of the New York City Economic Development Corporation; Founding President of the Alliance for Downtown New York; and President of the Real Estate Division for Trinity Church and Executive Vice-President of Trinity Church-St. Paul’s Chapel.

Carl is the former chairman of the New York State Health Foundation, a non-profit entity which funds innovative healthcare programs throughout New York State. He is also a former Trustee of the Ford Foundation and the Urban Land Institute, as well as a former full-time faculty member at New York University’s Schack Institute of Real Estate, where he served as Academic Chair of the Concentration in Global Real Estate.

Carl was the inaugural recipient of the 2017 John E. Zuccotti Public Service Award from the Real Estate Board of New York, which recognizes citizens who have displayed exceptional accomplishments and service in the public’s interest. In 2011, Carl was recognized by the Center for an Urban Future as “one of New York’s most innovative economic development leaders over the past three decades” and, in 2002, Carl was honored by Crain’s New York Business as one of the “100 Most Influential Leaders in Business.” He has received both the “Chairman’s Award” by the New York Landmarks Conservancy (2000) and the “Public Interest Service Award” by New York University (1993).

Carl holds a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University and a Juris Doctor from New York University School of Law.

Joseph Cahoon

Joseph brings 15 years of large-scale real estate development experience coupled with a unique background in academia.

Joseph brings a dynamic mix of real estate development, finance and analytical expertise to HR&A’s Dallas office. He joined HR&A as a Senior Advisor in our Dallas office in September 2015. Joseph’s extensive real estate experience in the development process includes site selection, contract negotiations, site entitlements, financial underwriting, project design, construction and asset management. The diversity of his real estate background spans multifamily, mixed-use, office, and in-fill land development. He assists both private and institutional clients on market responsive land use and real estate development strategies.

In January 2014, Joseph joined the Cox School of Business as the Director of the Folsom Institute for Real Estate. In his role, Joseph is responsible for leading the Institute’s initiatives in academics, research and outreach to the real estate industry to enhance the Institute’s and students’ relationships with alumni and other industry leaders nationally. In addition to his role with the Folsom Institute, Joseph is an Adjunct Professor in the Cox School and teaches real estate finance courses for both MBA’s and BBA’s.

From 2010 to 2015, Joseph led the development of Cirrus Logic’s 150,000 square foot Class-A corporate headquarters in downtown Austin. The first phase was completed in June 2012, and the second phase was completed in March 2015. Cirrus Logic, Inc. is a publicly traded fabless semiconductor company based in Austin. Joseph was responsible for all site due diligence efforts, underwriting, entitlement procurement and land acquisition for the project. He led the design and development team through the design, pre-construction and construction phases. Joseph also led the efforts to assemble and entitle surrounding downtown parcels for a possible future campus expansion. Most recently, Joseph represented Cirrus Logic in their lease negotiations to be the anchor tenant in Schlosser Development Corp.’s Shoal Creek Walk project, a 225,000 square foot, 15-story office tower located adjacent to Cirrus Logic’s headquarters.

From 2009 to 2014, Joseph was the Managing Director of the Real Estate Finance and Investment Center in the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin). Prior to joining UT Austin, Joseph was a Development Associate with Gables Residential in Dallas and was responsible for sourcing and underwriting multifamily and mixed-use acquisition and development opportunities in Dallas. He previously served as a Partner with Champion Partners in Dallas where he focused on value-add office investments. Before attending business school in 2003, Joseph was a Project Manager with Century Development in Houston, where he helped manage the development of the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts and 1000 Main, an 836,000 square foot office tower in downtown Houston.

Joseph received an M.B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin in 2005, an M.S. in Community & Regional Planning from the University of Texas at Austin in 2000 and a B.A. from the Plan II Honors Liberal Arts Program at the University of Texas at Austin in 1993.

  • Director, Folsom Institute for Real Estate, SMU Cox School of Business
  • Adjunct Professor, SMU Cox School of Business
  • Member, Urban Land Institute
  • Member, Pension Real Estate Association
  • Advisory Council Member, Real Estate Finance and Investment Center, University of Texas Austin