Andy Chen is an investment broker at NAI Capital specializing in retail and industrial properties. Prior to joining NAI Capital, Andy has operated his own electronics recycling business, consulting clients on waste reduction and e-sustainability solutions. After his recycling venture, he found his passion in real estate. Presented with an opportunity to co-manage a property management firm in Las Vegas, he moved there to pursue the opportunity. During his time at that firm, he taught property investors how to effectively flip homes throughout the city of Las Vegas. Currently at NAI Capital, Andy represents equity investors wanting to purchase retail and industrial projects. His strong knowledge of investments in addition to his business acumen propels him to be a top producer at his company.
Over the course of his career, Andy has made multiple efforts to strengthen his analytical and investing skills. Some of his more prominent skills include running Argus Enterprise cash flows and building complex Excel spreadsheets.
Andy, himself, is also an avid real estate investor and holds a portfolio of a different property types including residential single family to multi-family homes, retail strip centers, and boutique motels.
Andy graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s in Marketing.
Upon completion of Ross Minority Program, Andy has goals to pursue a Masters in Real Estate Development, attain a CCIM certificate, and become Argus certified. His ideal goal is to partner with a commercial property developer and eventually run his own commercial asset management and consulting firm. Andy Chen lives in Chino California.
Connie Chung is a recent graduate from California Polytechnic State University, Pomona, also known as Cal Poly Pomona. During her academic career and after, she worked at Marcus & Millichap in Ontario as an executive assistant to two retail associates. Prior to working at Marcus & Millichap, Connie Chung assisted in retail property management for her family, in which she started in high school. Connie received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with an emphasis in Finance, Real Estate and Law. During her time as a student in Cal Poly Pomona, she was the founding president of the Real Estate Association, a student organization focusing on real estate networking, education, and exploration. Through her leadership, she has created affiliations with NAIOP and ICSC, as well as brought in more student interest in real estate. Connie looks forward to continuing education through the Ross Minority Program, and hopes to find a more hands on and rewarding career in retail real estate following the program. Connie Chung currently resides in Stanton, Orange County.
Dr. BaoKim Coleman is a management, business strategy and integrated marketing communications consultant. He helps clients sharpen strategic focus, advance competitive distinction, and improve organizational performance. He designs and delivers a wide array of learning programs and services, along with assessments and decision support tools, which help clients, strengthen managerial leadership, optimize their business model, and improve overall performance.
Presently, Dr. Coleman is President and CEO of The Visionz Company, a strategic management consulting company and a Co-founder of the Global Institute of Innovative Leaderships (GIIL), a 501(c) (3) non-profit institutional organization specializing in leadership training and a think-tank focusing on all realms pertaining to leadership development. Prior to going out on his own, he has 20 plus years of experience in corporate management and marketing communications, particularly in the Automotive and Healthcare industry sectors working for Fortune 500 companies. Concurrently, in addition to his consulting ventures, Dr. Coleman is a full time Assistant Professor of Business Administration at Whittier College, as well as an adjunct professor at various institutions locally and online.
On a personal level, BaoKim is passionate about his social work of eradicating poverty and homelessness of women and children and human trafficking in the United States. He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Spiritt Family Service. As for his other personal interests, he is a competitive Track and Field athlete, as well as a club soccer player.
David Dieguez is a Sales and Service Coordinator for US Bank. He has worked in the banking industry for 9 years and is a recent Bachelor of Science in Business Management recipient from the University of Phoenix. During his career in the banking industry, he served as liaison between the bank’s customers and the bank's team of mortgage and commercial finance officers. David feels it an honor that he has helped several customers over the years achieve their dreams of purchasing their first homes, finance their small business, re-finance high interest rate commercial real estate loans, and has helped numerous parents plan and save towards their children's college fund. He especially enjoys working in real estate projects, and has provided guidance to contractors in obtaining financing for different developments.
David’s goal is to utilize his education, experience, and contacts to launch his own Real Estate Development Company and serve the needs of underserved low income communities similar to the community he grew up in. David would also like to give back to his community by creating a non-profit organization that would empower youth in both financial literacy and real estate development. He believes both play a key role in the revitalization of low-income communities. Through hard work, education and persistence, David aspires to be an example to the inner city youth, demonstrating that no goal is out of reach.
A recent UCLA graduate, Matthew Gates comes to Ross with eleven years of retail and operations management experience. As an undergrad, Matthew, studied the unique challenges and opportunities related to stimulating long-run growth in urban communities. His two-year research project, which included thorough literature review, detailed proposal, interviews of local entrepreneurs, and analysis of growth opportunities, gave Matthew a unique insight into the important role Commercial Real Estate plays in facilitating urban economic growth.
Over the last year, Matthew has pursued opportunities to expand his industry knowledge. After graduation, Matthew interned for Boston Private Bank’s community investment division. In this role, Matthew worked with syndication funds and the bank’s credit committee on multiple LIHTC projects, underwrote both commercial and residential loans, and assisted in cultivating business relationships with public entities, as well as for profit and non-profit developers. Since then Matthew has continued to take Real Estate Finance and quantitative courses at UCLA extension, and participated in the Real Estate Associate Program’s (REAP) 2015 cohort.
Prior to returning to school in 2010, Mr. Gates enjoyed a successful eleven-year retail and operations management career, with Fortune 50 companies. Throughout which his success was predicated on the ability to think analytically, identify business opportunities, deliver impactful results. During his career, Matthew has gained significant experience with budget development and execution, long range forecasting, vendor negotiations, and operational analysis.
For Matthew, ROSS represents an opportunity to advance both his broad industry knowledge and cultivate the technical skills needed to successfully transition into the industry.
Lindsay Hagan is an Associate Planner with the City of Mountain View. Since 2009, she has worked on a variety of successful development projects, policy directives, and zoning initiatives. Some of her projects include new housing subdivisions, a hospital campus redevelopment, affordable housing projects, commercial developments, and the city’s first green building code.
Lindsay obtained a bachelor’s degree in Sociology, with a minor in Urban and Environmental Policy, from Occidental College in 2006. In researching and preparing her thesis, she discovered the “architects of neighborhoods” – City Planners. With her strong interest in people and the built environment, she pursued a Master in Planning degree from the University of Southern California’s Sol Price School of Public Policy in 2008 (previously School of Public Policy, Planning and Development). During her program, she worked for the City of Sierra Madre and the Culver City Redevelopment Agency. Since then, she has obtained her LEED Accredited Professional (LEED AP) credential in 2009 and her American Institute of Accredited Planners (AICP) credential in 2012.
With her experience in planning and recent work on city-funded affordable housing projects, her interest in real estate financing and feasibility has grown leading her to pursue additional education from the University of Southern California Lusk Center for Real Estate. Outside of work, Lindsay enjoys international travel, spending time with family and friends, and gourmet restaurants.
Pamela Huley is a skilled individual that is devoted to improving her community. Mrs. Huley has an extensive and varied professional work history that includes project management, business operations, health care delivery and real estate. Mrs. Huley is now an entrepreneur who is enthusiastically committing her skills, time and energy to advancing real estate projects.
Pamela earned a Bachelors degree from Howard University in Washington, DC and a Masters degree from the University of Phoenix. She also serves as adjunct Faculty for the University of Phoenix, teaching classes on Change Management and Informatics.
Pamela is looking forward to the future and applying the knowledge she will learn from USC’s Ross program. Her hobbies include blogging, women’s health and fitness advocacy, and following all sports, especially basketball. Pamela is married and lives in greater Los Angeles with her family.
Sarah Lewis graduated from Claremont McKenna College with a B.A. in Organizational Studies in 2010. While at CMC, she earned her California Real Estate Salesperson License and wrote her senior thesis about the Jordan Downs housing development in Watts. In college she was on the varsity track and field team and worked as a Student Program Manager for School on Wheels, an organization that sets up tutoring programs at homeless shelters.
Sarah has experience working as a Management Trainee at Homecoming at Terra Vista, a master planned community in Rancho Cucamonga with 868 units. In this position she was able to gain experience in various aspects of property management and leasing. She enjoyed planning and executing large events for residents, gained an understanding of basic accounting, and had the highest resident-retention rate at the property for four consecutive months. She also has experience working as an Admission Officer at Claremont McKenna College and as a hotline staffer on a crisis intervention hotline. Sarah is excited to be beginning her MBA program this fall after the Ross Program concludes. She looks forward to meeting and learning with all of you!
Brandie Lockett is an Urban Designer for Gensler Los Angeles. With a practicing background of architecture, planning and urban design, her core interest lies with public service and guiding developers through the rigorous process of constructing urban environments.
Her experience focuses on the relationship between the built environment and peoples quality of life through urban research -- applying empirical analysis to understand how urban dynamics can strengthen community sustainability, innovative design opportunities and capital benefits.
Ms. Lockett has influenced urban design guidelines for city planning municipalities both domestic and abroad. While in the Peace Corps she implemented master planning projects for Non-Governmental and Local Governmental agencies for the city of Gjirokaster in Albania. Her contributions were adopted by the cities municipality to provide safe and pedestrian friendly access between residential, educational and local facilities. In collaboration with Albanian government officials and local community stake holders, Ms. Locketts responsibilities included developing appropriate environmental planning strategies and regulations, conducting community assessments to identify strengths and needs, conducting land-use planning and zoning studies for inclusivity, planning and implementing affordable services that may increase local jobs and promotion of the site, determining how to use available energy resources and preparing proposals with relevant and supporting data to brand and market sites.
Ms. Lockett holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Tuskegee University and a Masters of Science in Architecture and Urban Design from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture Planning and Preservation. She is a member of APA, ULI, AIA, & LEED Certified.
Ms. Jengi Martinez is 19-year veteran and active Air Force Reservist, presently serving as a Major and a C-17 Pilot/Aircraft Commander. She has over 14 years of experience leading small to large sized teams with complex backgrounds and diverse disciplines. Her natural analytical skills and talent for logistical multi-level contingency planning is why she is entrusted with wide-ranging authority in a fast-paced, high stress environment where no day is ever the same. Having traveled to 72 countries, this international and diplomatic experience with multiple agencies has taught her the importance of knowing the “customer’s” needs and culture to better communicate and reach a common goal.
In response to having flown over 600 combat sorties, the majority of which were medical evacuation, she saw a need to reduce the effects of war on our service members and their families. Her entrepreneurial spirit and sense of social responsibility lead her to initiate the March Aviation Society (MAS) in 2011. This non-profit organization provides relief funds for southern California’s largest military air base and it’s military members.
A graduate and member of the Dean’s List at USC’s Marshall School of Business Master of Business for Veterans (MBV) program, Jengi seeks new challenges in the commercial real estate industry. As an enthusiastic member of the Ross Minority Program in Real Estate 2015 Summer Class, Jengi plans to merge this knowledge and experience with her passion for the real estate industry. Her long term-goals are to continue contributing to her community by employing and mentoring fellow veterans and minorities through her own profitable real estate ventures and businesses.
Vanessa is currently a Vice President at East West Bank. She has been in residential lending for the last nineteen years and has worked for major companies including Countrywide Home Loans, Wells Fargo and Bank of America. For the last fourteen years, she's managed loan officers, sales managers, and processors. Loans and insurance are her expertise. She is a proven coach, trainer, and motivator providing industry education on emerging markets with California Association of Realtors (CAR). Vanessa worked for JPM Chase as a Regional Business Development Officer for California. She oversaw the business development, CRA, REO, Short Sales, and Builder/Condo for CA. In her previous position she was number one BDO for CA in 2012. In addition, owns and operates a Farmers Insurance agency since 2008 and is a real estate investor.
Vanessa Montañez holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a MBA from Pepperdine University.
Mr. Riley received his B.A. in Public Relations from Columbia College in Chicago, IL. He has over 10 years management experience working as an Executive Manager for Walgreens. He has worked across multiple industries including retail, insurance, financial, real estate, and non-profit.
In 2003 he co-founded Baby Boomer Consulting, Inc., a non-profit organization which vision is to provide youth with the life skills and training essential for success in today’s competitive society. Odest has implemented plans to improve the academic achievement of South Los Angeles Inner City Schools by challenging students to meet higher academic standards. He donates funds to a variety of youth and community based organizations.
Odest also has a passion for improving the African American business and political climate throughout Los Angeles. He is a founding member of Black Los Angeles Young Democrats and the former political director for the Los Angeles County Young Democrats. He has worked on numerous political campaigns including newly elected Assemblyman Reginald Jones Sawyer. He was awarded The 2011 Franklin & Eleanor Roosevelt Democrat of the Year Award due to his achievements throughout multiple campaigns. He is also a 2015 REAP and African American Board Leadership Institute graduate.
Odest continues to strive for excellence as the CEO of the real estate and lending company WLM Financial. Through his company he seeks to provide urban development and financing opportunities in minority based communities.
Avni Shah is an architectural designer at William Adams Architects working on single family and multifamily projects. Prior to that, she has worked on senior living projects at Orcutt | Winslow Partnership in Arizona. Avni graduated from the University of Southern California with a professional degree in Architecture and a Minor in Social Entrepreneurship. She is currently producing a documentary on the role of mega-projects in transforming cities. Avni is passionate about combining architecture and development with urban and social initiatives. Avni Shah lives in Los Angeles.
Denise Ustariz is General Counsel and Chief Operating Officer at Westside Investments Group, Inc. Westside is a real estate investment and management company. Ms. Ustariz manages and maintains corporate compliance and oversees daily operations of several real estate entities including, a hotel, apartment buildings and commercial properties. Ms. Ustariz drafts, negotiates and reviews various types of real estate documents, including leases, purchase and sale agreements, partnership agreements and loan agreements. She coordinates entitlements and permits for renovations and tenant build-outs. She is in constant contact with the CEO, managers, partners and contractors to ensure projects are on schedule and at or below budget. Ms. Ustariz also handles and oversees employment issues and pending litigation.
Prior to working for Westside, Ms. Ustariz worked in the area of corporate transactional work. Ms. Ustariz earned her B.A. from University of California, Los Angeles and her J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law.
Ms. Ustariz is a member of the Urban Land Institute, the International Association of Shopping Centers, the Association of Corporate Counsel and the Los Angeles County Bar Association.
Ms. Ustariz is the 2015 recipient of the ICSC Foundation/Gap Inc. Fellowship for the USC Ross Minority Program in Real Estate.