Dividends Through Diversity and Inclusion Initiative

Nareit has created the Dividends Through Diversity and Inclusion (DDI) Initiative to promote the recruitment, inclusion and advancement of women, African Americans, and members of other diverse groups in REITs and the broader commercial real estate industry.

This Initiative seeks to achieve our mission for REITs and the broader commercial real estate industry through:

  • Expanding knowledge about successful practices for developing, implementing and enhancing diversity and inclusion (D & I) policies and programs;
  • Providing education and information to supplement career development of women, African Americans, and members of other diverse groups;
  • Building a community of Nareit members who support this initiative; and 
  • Facilitating Nareit events, or sessions within larger events, when D & I issues are discussed.

Strategic Goals

  1. Hold networking receptions and/or programs in conjunction with REITwise, REITweek, REITworld, and REITworks.
  2. Curate and share studies and reports about women, African Americans, and members of other diverse groups working in commercial real estate and serving on REIT boards of directors, as well as other relevant articles and studies about D & I in the U.S. and the global commercial real estate industry. 
  3. Commission and produce research relating to D & I  in the REIT and commercial real estate industry.
  4. Connect senior Nareit women and members of other diverse groups who are interested and available to serve on public company boards, including REITs and REOCs, with search firms doing REIT and REOC board searches, as well as with Nareit REIT CEOs who are interested.
  5. Facilitate meetings with leading commercial real estate associations to explore opportunities to share information and to collaborate on D & I  matters. 
  6. Present annual awards to a Nareit individual and member company. See below.
  7. Consider joining CEO Action and Paradigm for Parity, two large national coalitions of CEOs and senior executive across multiple sectors, with a focus on enhancing various D&I programs.
  8. Consider creating a DDI mentorship program within Nareit.

Diversity & Inclusion Recognition Awards

Nareit’s Diversity & Inclusion Recognition Awards honor both a Nareit member company and an individual member who have demonstrated a strong commitment and made outstanding contributions to the advancement of diversity and inclusion within their companies as well as in the REIT and publicly traded real estate industry. 

Nareit Social Policies Survey

Sponsored by Nareit and conducted by FPL Associates L.P., this annual survey provides insight into what REITs are doing with respect to the Social component of ESG, including D&I policies regarding recruitment, retention, promotion, training and health, wellness and safety of employees, as well as community outreach and supply chain management.

The Dividends Through Diversity and Inclusion Initiative’s Steering Committee is made up of the following Nareit members:

  • Diane Morefield, CFO, CyrusOne Inc. and Co-Chair of the Steering Committee
  • Mary Hogan-Preusse, Founder and Principal, Sturgis Partners LLC and Co-Chair of the Steering Commitee 
  • Sherry Rexroad, Managing Director-Global REITs, BlackRock and Co-Chair of the Steering Commitee 
  • Angela Aman, CFO, Brixmor Property Group Inc
  • Gemma Burgess, Managaing Director, Ferguson Partners Ltd.
  • Sherry Cefali, Managing Director, Duff & Phelps
  • Kelly Cheng, Director, Barclays
  • James Connor, Chairman & CEO, Duke Realty
  • Tejal Engman,  VP, Investor Relations, Host Hotels & Resorts
  • Jeffrey Donnelly, EVP & CFO, DiamondRock Hospitality
  • William Ferguson, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Ferguson Partners Ltd.
  • Leslie Hale, CEO, RLJ Lodging Trust
  • Lisa Kaufman, Global CEO, Managing Director, LaSalle Investment Management Securities, LLC
  • Sheila McGrath, Sr. Managing Director, Evercore ISI
  • Marguerite M. Nader, President & CEO, Equity Lifestyle Properties, Inc.
  • Martin (Hap) Stein, Jr., Chairman & CEO, Regency Centers Corporation
  • Tracy Ward, SVP, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, Prologis, Inc.

The Dividends Through Diversity and Inclusion Initiative’s Action Team is made up of the following Nareit members: 

  • Jenny Bean, SVP-HR, Duke Realty Corporation
  • Pam Byrne, VP, Human Capital, Welltower
  • Carolyn Carter Singh, EVP-Chief Talent Officer, Brixmor Property Group Inc.
  • Mark Delisi, VP, Corporate Responsibility and Energy Management, AvalonBay Communities
  • Leah Landro, VP-HR, Kimco Realty Corporation
  • Christine McElhinney, Senior Manager, Corporate Resonsibility, AvalonBay Communities
  • Tracy Ward, SVP, Investor Relations, Prologis, Inc.
  • Dawnita Wilson, VP, Diversity & Inclusion, JBG Smith

Nareit’s Senior Vice President, Industry Affairs & Strategic Initiatives, Bonnie Gottlieb, is Nareit’s liaison to this Initiative.

Latest Diversity News

  • Nareit Developments blog
    7/10/2020

    Nareit Launches ESG Exchange Series with July 21 Webinar

    This interactive webinar—held on July 21—will bring together an ESG-focused REIT investor and two REIT executives to discuss how their perspectives, and their company’s priorities in ESG, have evolved recently.
  • Nareit Developments blog
    7/9/2020

    REIT Leaders Respond to Racial Injustice

    Leaders from the REIT industry have responded to the recent murder of George Floyd and the ensuing protests against the unequal justice faced by African Americans.
  • Nareit Developments blog
    7/6/2020

    Nareit’s REITworks Provides Opportunity to Learn from Peers’ Experiences in Unprecedented Times

    Kelly Meissner, Director of Sustainability at Ventas, is looking forward to learning from peers’ experiences and successes at REITworks, particularly related to COVID-19. Another area of focus for Meissner is working towards addressing diversity and inclusion issues in the real estate industry.

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