MaryAnne Gilmartin, President & CEO, Forest City Ratner
Twenty years after she joined Forest City Ratner, one year since she took over for Bruce Ratner, and six weeks after the company closed on a massive equity infusion from Greenland Group into Pacific Park Brooklyn (nee Atlantic Yards), MaryAnne is in the enviable and intimidating position of determining what her company can and should do next. It controls 16.7M SF across 42 buildings, but that's Bruce's legacy. The pace and development capacity MaryAnne deems feasible from here will define her own tenure at Forest City. MaryAnne came to NYC as an urban fellow and worked in economic development under mayors Koch and Dinkins, and Bruce recruited her after she helped bring Bear Stearns to his MetroTech Center. Her breakout came with Midtown's NY Times Building: Forest City won the bid against the odds, and not only did MaryAnne get the building done through the slow period after 9/11, it has become one of the company's jewels.
Melissa Burch, EVP, Forest City Ratner
Melissa is living the dream; all she wanted to be when she grew up was aNew Yorker. Now she's helping shape the city, overseeing the revolutionary modular high-rise resi construction at Pacific Park Brooklyn and heading her company's gig as master developer of the Cornell-Tech campus going up on Roosevelt Island. After internships with the DNC and Furman Selz, investment banking emerged as her favorite. So she worked for Merrill Lynch before putting in some time at tech startup Urban Fetch and then earning an MBA at Harvard. Real estate combined her experience in operations, finance, and politics, and she landed a gig at Forest City Ratner via a cold call 11 years ago.While Forest City may say the modular building is "revolutionary," and it someday may be part of a major trend, it hasn't yet proven to be a replicable model. There have been both delays and snags.