Women Entrepreneurs Helping Shape the Future of Detroit

Women Entrepreneurs Helping Shape the Future of Detroit

According to a 2015 estimate by industry group Commercial Real Estate Women, women make up just 32 percent of all real estate development jobs in the United States. But that number represents an increase of 60 percent since 2000.

A recent article in Crain’s Detroit Business explored the ways in which women in development in Michigan are making their mark on the industry and the state—including a number of revealing and informative quotes from women who are on the front lines in shifting demographics and outdated assumptions in this traditionally male-dominated space.

eleven thirteen center

eleven thirteen center

I had an hour between meetings last year and decided to take a drive through Bay City’s Center Avenue Historic District. In particular, I was thinking of developing a small-scale infill project and wanted it to be in close proximity to downtown and other projects I’ve worked on.

I’ve driven down Center Ave countless times, but that day this vacant parcel with concrete slabs jumped out at me. It’s located at the corner of Center and Sherman. A large 100’ x 100’ parcel with the unsightly remains of a gas/auto shop. It’s walkable to Downtown Bay City, about a half a mile away. I called the realtor listed on it’s for sale sign and started digging for information. It has been for sale for 10 years.

Developer eyes historic Saginaw building for $17.9 million boutique hotel

SAGINAW, MI --  A group of real estate investors are taking the first steps to examine the historic Bearinger Fireproof Building for redevelopment.

Developer Jenifer Acosta, who made her mark in Bay City renovating the old Bay City Times building into luxury apartments, is proposing the Saginaw building at 126 N. Franklin be redeveloped into a 76-room boutique hotel with 4,000-square-feet of restaurant and commercial space.

Jenifer Acosta Real estate developer, Jenifer Acosta Development

Company: Jenifer Acosta Development

Title: Real estate developer

Age: 34

Years in development/real estate: Two

Education: Southern Illinois University, undergraduate; University of Miami, master's; New York University, graduate certificate in real estate development.

Real persistence: Men dominate real estate development, but women make inroads

Years after Susan Harvey was hired in the mid-1990s to lead the Canton Township office of Ashley Capital, a New York City-based industrial and warehouse space powerhouse, the man who had brought her on board confided the one concern he had at the time: That she was "too nice" to be successful in the male-dominated real estate development industry.

She's proven him wrong.