Gilmartin Tapped as New FCRC CEO

MaryAnne Gilmartin, a longtime executive at Forest City Ratner Companies, has been named president and CEO, succeeding Bruce Ratner, who will stay on as executive chairman of the Brooklyn-based development company.

MaryAnne Gilmartin, a longtime executive at Forest City Ratner Companies, has been named president and CEO, succeeding Bruce Ratner, who will stay on as executive chairman of the Brooklyn-based development company.

The promotion is part of the company’s ongoing succession planning and takes effect immediately.

Gilmartin, formerly executive vice president in charge of commercial and residential development at FCRC, joined the firm, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cleveland-based Forest City Enterprises, Inc., in 1994. She has since played a major role in most of the company’s highly visible projects in the New York region, including the Barclays Center arena, which is part of the $4.9 billion, 22-acre, mixed-use Atlantic Yards development in Brooklyn. Gilmartin oversaw development of New York by Gehry, a 76-story residential building in Manhattan designed by Frank Gehry, and helped procure the firm’s partnership with The New York Times to build its 1.5 million-square-foot headquarters in midtown Manhattan. She also manages the commercial portfolio at MetroTech Center in downtown Brooklyn, a 6.7 million-square-foot Class A office complex. In 2011, the firm opened Ridge Hill, a 1.3 million-square-foot mixed-use, open-air shopping center in Yonkers, N.Y., near the New York City border. Several months ago, FCRC broke ground on the first residential building in the Atlantic Yards development.

“It is important for me and the industry to recognize MaryAnne’s role in leading our major efforts from Atlantic Yards to New York by Gehry,” Ratner said in a news release. “While I will stay involved in key projects like Barclays Center, Atlantic Yards and Ridge Hill, and be active in strategic planning and new initiatives, it is the right time to make this change. I’m confident MaryAnne will be a great partner as the President and CEO of FCRC.”

Ratner, who handpicked Gilmartin to join his firm, described how the two are “both developers at the core and like-minded in terms of how we see our role in the business of building communities.”

“Our partnership has worked well and produced great success for the company,” added Ratner, who founded FCRC in 1985 and led the firm while it completed more than $5 billion in development of 16 million square feet of office, retail, hotel, residential, sports and entertainment projects.

David J. LaRue, Forest City Enterprises president and CEO, noted in a release that under Ratner’s leadership, the New York metropolitan area has become the parent company’s largest core market.

“We are thrilled that MaryAnne Gilmartin will continue this legacy and assume day-to-day leadership of FCRC as president and CEO, and that Bruce will continue to play a key role as executive chairman,” LaRue added.

Gilmartin called her longtime mentor a “visionary in the truest sense of the word” and said she was fortunate to have learned the development business from the best.

“I am thrilled to partner with Bruce and to continue his culture of excellence, while further driving the innovation that he has brought to the company,” Gilmartin said in the release. “Looking forward, I am excited to have the opportunity to lead FCRC through the many opportunities for growth ahead of us.”

A graduate of Fordham University, Gilmartin was named a New York City Urban Fellow and joined the city’s Public Development Corporation, now Economic Development Corporation, in 1986.

Frank Marino, CEO of New York City -based communications firm The Marino Organization,  first met Gilmartin more than 20 years ago when he recruited her as an intern in the city’s PDC.

“MaryAnne Gilmartin’s ascendency to serve as the CEO of Forest City Ratner is noteworthy not only because it shatters a glass ceiling, but also because MaryAnne is a smart and accomplished visionary who will continue to be a transformative presence in New York City and beyond,” Marino told Commercial Property Executive.

“She is as tenacious as she is energetic, and in making this appointment Forest City sends the message that it will continue to play a key role in reshaping the industry and the city,” Marino said.

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