I have always been interested in real estate. I grew up on post-war Long Island where I saw farmland become office complexes and housing developments. Even as a child, I knew these things did not happen spontaneously. At 17 years old, I came to New York City to start college and live in one of the most dynamic real estate markets in the world. It was 1982 and the subway cars were covered in graffiti, the City was not as safe is it is today, and rental apartment buildings were converting to condominiums and cooperatives. My senior thesis in college was a study of zoning and suburban development. In graduate school, I continued my work in urban planning. One project involved documenting all of 23rd Street in Manhattan from river to river and looking at trends in real estate transactions in Midtown South. For my final graduate project, I was the director of a study of the economic development of Hudson County, New Jersey, which we conducted for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for its use in planning PATH and other transportation services.