This article was originally published in the January/February 2016 issue of REIT magazine and has been republished with the magazine’s permission.
Real estate companies were often formed as family-run businesses where the patriarch would eventually pass down the operation to his sons, points out Anna Chew, vice president and CFO of UMH Properties. Those men networked with engineers, construction workers, contractors and others in the business, further solidifying the prevalence of testosterone within the industry. Real estate was the old boys’ club.
That has certainly begun to change, especially within the REIT industry. It is no longer an anomaly to see female executives within the C-suites of these companies. There is still a long way to go before boardrooms comprise men and women equally (not just at REITs, but across all of corporate America as well). However, Chew says that women are now found more frequently in high-profile positions, and that will o