Real Estate Financing Roundtable Participant's Bios
Adolfo Henriques joined Gibraltar Private Bank & Trust in February 2011 as vice chairman, president and chief operating officer. He is now president and CEO of the Coral Gables-based company, which has eight full-service private banking and wealth management relationship offices in Coral Gables, Fort Lauderdale, downtown Miami, Miami Beach, South Miami, Naples, Ocean Reef and New York. “At Gibraltar Private, we provide capital for people to purchase residential and commercial real estate in substantially all property types,” he said. “During my career, I’ve been on the development side and the distressed area of real estate and financing.” Prior to joining Gibraltar Private, Henriques was vice chairman of the Related Group and chairman, president and CEO of Florida East Coast Industries. His extensive banking career includes being chairman of NationsBank for South Florida and CEO of the South Region for Regions Bank. Henriques has also been involved in many local charities and business organizations including having served as chairman of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce and the United Way of Dade County.
A nationally recognized market leader in real estate investment banking, Charles Foschini is vice chairman of South Florida Markets, CBRE, in Miami. “I am responsible for business development and the structuring of complex debt and equity investments throughout the region” he said. “I do capital placements and finance property types all around the country.” In his role with CBRE, Foschini has been involved in the sale and financing of more than 450 investment properties totaling over $10 billion in value, including several landmark single asset transactions in excess of $200 million. Foschini has consistently been honored as a recipient of the Colbert Coldwell Circle, which recognizes the top 3 percent of commissioned salespeople at CBRE, and he was the 2005 winner of CBRE’s Innovation Award for his team’s cutting edge business practices.
Steven Carlyle Cronig
A partner at Hinshaw & Culbertson in Miami, Steven Carlyle Cronig is a Florida Bar Certified real estate attorney who concentrates his practice in commercial real estate. “My practice is divided between representing lenders and non-U.S. clients, mostly from Europe, who purchase U.S. real estate,” he said. “I handle inbound investment but don’t do real estate work outside the U.S. My practice has been consistent over the past 30 years, although I haven’t represented many hedge funds lately as I did before 2006.” Today, Cronig represents developers in acquisitions and dispositions of property; creation of development entities such as joint ventures, limited partnerships and REITs; preparation of plats, subdivision covenants, and various documents, declarations and prospectuses. He also represents borrowers in closing construction and commercial loans and prepares construction contracts; lien administration and closing documents. Cronig represents many commercial and private lenders in connection with the structuring of new asset-secured loans, construction financing, mezzanine financing, administration of lender portfolio assets, and other activities.
Ronald Kriss is managing partner of the Miami office of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, and chair of the firm’s Distressed Property Group. He practices commercial real estate law, with a focus in loan recovery representation for institutional lenders. “Over the years, I have foreclosed on major properties, including the Southeast Financial Center, Interterra Office Building, Four Ambassadors, and the Hyatt Regency in downtown Miami,” he said. “I have just finished the foreclosure on a 14-acre development site in downtown Sarasota on the bay and will help them market the property for sale. I am also helping clients with buying, selling, lending and leasing commercial real estate
Kriss also has extensive leasing and financing experience, and the representation of clients in construction and permanent real estate lending, sale leaseback, and private placement financings. Kriss has represented clients in numerous high-profile projects, including the acquisitions and sales of raw land, office buildings, shopping centers, and industrial parks, and the development of condominium projects, residential subdivisions, and condo hotels.
Erica L. English
A shareholder at Katz Barron in Miami, Erica L. English has been a member of the firm’s Real Estate Practice Group since 1986. “As market cycles change, my practice evolves from transactions to distressed assets and some litigation,” she said. “I am also involved in mergers and acquisitions, as well as private equity deals, mostly concentrated on the real estate industry. I have a heavy emphasis on lending, leasing and assisting with development projects with a subspecialty in hospitality and private clubs.”
English previously practiced commercial litigation at the firm, focusing on real property and lending disputes. She now uses that experience to counsel clients regarding strategy and risk in transactional matters and to support the Litigation Practice Group in loan workouts and in developing case strategy for real estate-related litigation.
Barry E. Somerstein
A shareholder at Greenspoon Marder in Fort Lauderdale, Barry E. Somerstein concentrates his practice in the area of real estate transactional law, finance, leasing, general corporate sports law and land use. Somerstein has represented many clients in the negotiation, structuring and documenting of real estate asset transactions, primarily, in connection with shopping centers, hotels and office buildings. “I am a deal junkie and real estate is the primary widget in my practice,” he said. “I am also a real estate investor in partnership with Related Group and other investors. We were buying apartments and shopping centers around the country, but based on the exuberance in the market, we’re mostly sitting on the sidelines now, although we are doing an apartment project in Boca Raton and another in Alabama. I also do a lot of time-share work, and much of my practice is outside Florida in places like South Carolina, Chicago, Nevada and Missouri.” Somerstein works with developer clients in connection with the acquisition, permitting, land use planning, finance and development of large tracts of real estate. His extensive background has enabled him to assist numerous clients in taking a raw piece of real estate and developing it into a finished product. He also represents landlords in connection with the leasing of office buildings, shopping centers and warehouses, and represents both lenders and borrowers in connection with real estate and asset-based financing. He has had extensive experience in loan workout and reorganizations.
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