GET TO KNOW REAP FELLOW: Farrah Forbes
Updated: May 23, 2022
Farrah is an IREM CPM®, Baruch MBA candidate, licensed NYS real estate broker, and accomplished professional with 16 years of property management experience. She has successfully managed significant multifamily assets through effective team leadership, a keen focus on financial analysis, strong market knowledge, and her drive to meet owner objectives. Farrah's experience includes managing various multifamily and mixed-use communities, including conventional, tax credit, and value-add properties. She recently transitioned out of residential operations and is now managing several office buildings and retail shopping centers throughout NY and CT.
1. What was the driving factor that led you to become a Project REAP fellow?
I love everything that Project REAP represents. As a black woman working in an industry that lacks diversity, it is essential to me as I continue to grow in my career to be involved with a program focused on helping people of color advance in CRE. I consider myself a lifetime learner, so I was also very intrigued by the curriculum and the talented pool of professionals teaching these topics. REAP’s partnership with ULI was also very attractive in my decision to become a Project REAP fellow.
2. How will you leverage the Academy for your professional growth and development?
I have been super intentional during the past 18 months to elevate my career and have put in a lot of work to enhance my knowledge and skills. In this short period, I earned my CPM designation and NYS real estate brokers license, became more involved in networking (i.e., CREW NY and the Institute of Real Estate Management) and completed the first two semesters of my MBA program at Baruch College. I have worked in residential property management for the past 16 years. After feeling pretty stagnant in my role the last few years, I was determined to take on new challenges and expand my experience within the industry. I’m proud to say that I recently transitioned from residential into commercial property management (which many know isn’t the easiest). I know that the new knowledge I will gain from REAP’s 2022 Spring Online Academy will be instrumental to my success as I get acclimated to my new role. I also look forward to expanding my professional network and leadership development via the new contacts I will make here.
3. What was the last CRE article you read that captured your imagination?
The last CRE publication I read that resonated the most with me was CREW Network’s 2021 white paper “A Catalyst for Change: COVID-19’s Impact on Women in Commercial Real Estate”. As a working single mother who has experienced my share of setbacks during my career, I relate to this topic on many levels. Due to the pandemic, the global impact on women in the workforce was catastrophic, disproportionately affecting millions in jobs and income, with even more significant disparities among Black and Latinx women (CREW Network, 2021). In the CRE industry alone, 70% of women have experienced either stalled or derailed career progress due to the pandemic. I’m very passionate about the advancement of women in CRE; this is the reason behind my high level of involvement in CREW New York. With adding Project REAP to my network, I’d like to do what I can to further the mission of helping minorities advance in CRE.