Page 58

verse neighborhoods in America, between its foreign-born population of Asians and Latinos and its home-grown American demographics. Likewise, its residents span the income spectrum from low-income families to wealthy up-and-coming business talent. The younger demographic is especially important to privately owned companies like Jamison, which are able to adjust quickly to marketplace changes. “There’s a trend toward urbanization and creative office, which allows us to take on new types of tenants and speak to a millennial mindset,” Lee explains. “Nimbleness – that ability to adapt – is crucial, especially in Los Angeles. We can make adjustments on a dayto-day basis.” Lee’s current initiatives are to spearhead capital improvements in their buildings, renovate lobbies and common areas, and refresh restrooms. Having graduated from school directly in the midst of the uncertainty of the 2008 economic downturn and global financial crisis, Lee knows firsthand the importance of positioning the company to be prepared for any future downturn. “Even though we’re experiencing rapid growth, we want to position our assets to weather any storm,” she says. Lee’s early entrance into her field gave her a head start but

also meant she has spent a good portion of her life working “like a freight train” to prove herself in the company. “In the beginning, I felt an innate need to work harder than everyone else, having come into the business as a family member at a young age. It was important that people could see that I was there for a reason beyond just being part of the family. I also hoped that this early commitment would get me farther ahead in my career before I needed more flexibility in the future.” Call of Double Duty

Balancing this rigor with family and personal passions isn’t easy. Lee took time off after her daughter’s birth to bond with her before returning to work. She moved her family closer to the office to minimize the commute. And she’s kept up with her civic and philanthropic passions as well: She is Commissioner and Board President for the Los Angeles City Employees’ Retirement System, a board member of Town Hall Los Angeles, and a board member for the California Speech-Language Pathology, Audiology, and Hearing Aid Dispensers Board. She also remains heavily involved in alumni volunteer boards at USC and Harvard-Westlake and will become the next President of the USC Alumni Association Board of Governors this May. “These organizations

are important to me, so it’s all about prioritization.” With so much on her plate, it might seem overwhelming, but Lee is energized by the work she does. “I love leasing and that’s why I gravitated toward it. You meet different people every day, and you have no idea what’s going to happen. Every deal starts the same, then as the negotiation progresses, you see different elements of personality, motivation, or leverage come through and these factors are what make every deal unique.” But it doesn’t stop there for her. “Real estate is very tangible. You see how the deal terms get translated onto a paper lease and then the paper plan turns into a full build-out. You see it as a drawing for months, and suddenly it’s a reality.” To Lee, success is more than the thrill of the deal or the satisfaction of a build-out. Success is an ongoing project, not something distilled into a single point in time. “I succeed most when my team feels like their voices are heard. I focus on developing strong teams where everyone contributes and feels good about what the mission is and where we’re going together. But to say ‘I’m successful’ is too much of a period at the end of a sentence, and I want to leave that open-ended, because I’ve got a long way to go and there’s a lot more that I want to do.” end

Real Estate & Finance - Visionary Profile I FOCUS ON DEVELOPING STRONG TEAMS WHERE EVERYONE CONTRIBUTES AND FEELS GOOD ABOUT WHAT THE MISSIONLee IS Jaime AND WHERE WE’RE GOING TOGETHER. 1. Lee atop one of Jamison’s office buildings in Downtown LA 2. Circa – a $500M project – is adjacent to STAPLES Center and L.A. Live

4. 3060 W. Olympic Blvd – set to finish in fall 2017 – is a seven story, 240,000+ sq. ft. 226-unit project 5. Lee and her younger brothers (L to R) Brian, Phillip, Garrett 5 58


Photo: Courtesy of Jaime Lee

3. Circa’s 1.6M sq. ft. will include two 35-story towers housing 648 residential units

C-Suite Quarterly  

Q2 2017 - Real Estate & Finance

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you