Re-energized alumni group looks to real estate market rebound.

On a balmy summer evening, more than 120 alumni, students and real estate professionals gathered at Smith & Wollensky steakhouse in Miami Beach. The topic? The commercial real estate outlook. The mood in the room? Cautiously optimistic.

The Real Estate Alumni Affinity Council (REAAC) joined forces with the local chapter of the Realtors Commercial Alliance of Greater Miami and the Beaches (RCA/RAMB) to host this free panel discussion and networking event.

A panel discussion and networking event hosted by REAAC and RCA/RAMB drew more than 120.

Guest speakers included Stephen Bittel, founder and CEO, Terranova Corporation; Paul Cauchi, commercial vice president, RCA/RAMB; and Ken H. Johnson, who teaches real estate courses in the College of Business Administration at Florida International University (FIU).

According to Dan Berkovitz (BBA ’10), president, REAAC, the discussion covered multiple aspects of the current commercial and retail real estate market in the greater Miami area.

“It’s fair to say that the general consensus among the presenters and attendees was that commercial real estate is poised for a rebound,” Berkovitz said. “Most shared the same positive sentiments—and that’s encouraging to us all.”

REAAC ramps up.

As a group of FIU business graduates and real estate professionals, REAAC seeks to create a beneficial network of alumni interested in developing careers in real estate. An additional aspect of its mission is to support the growth and advancement of the college’s Jerome Bain Real Estate Institute, undergraduate and graduate real estate programs and the Real Estate Student Association (RESA).

REAAC executive board members, from left to right: Jose Fernandez (BS ’77), Dan Berkovitz, Rafael Fermoselle (BBA ’10), Albert Poledri and Wenceslao Fernandez Jr. (BBA ’92)

Berkovitz and his fellow REAAC board members are working hard to schedule and plan more regular events like the recent panel discussion.

“The frequency of REAAC activities declined during the economic downturn,” he said. “Our goal is to provide a valuable, useful and easily accessible forum for regularly sharing information about real estate market trends. We want to get more alumni and more community members involved.”

A September REAAC event billed as a “View from the Beaches” is being scheduled. Please contact Berkovitz for more details.

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