Over 1,000 Well-Wishers Fete Related Beal, David J. Begelfer at Annual NAIOP Real Estate Awards GalaDecember 04, 2018 — By Mike Hoban
BOSTON—The recent 2018 NAIOP Distinguished Real Estate Awards Gala was one for the ages in all respects, with the event at Westin Copley Place honoring Related Beal for their vast real estate achievements, charitable activities and community betterment while presenting NAIOP Massachusetts CEO David J. Begelfer with the Edward H. Linde Public Service Award for his 27 years at the helm of a chapter that has grown into the trade organization’s largest nationally. Begelfer is handing the reins over to Chief Operating Officer Reesa Fischer and Senior VP of Government Affairs Tamara Small, who will co-lead the organization when he steps aside at the end of this month.
NAIOP Massachusetts today has nearly 1,700 members and offers over 50 educational and networking events annually. The chapter Begelfer launched in the mid-1980s up against several established trade groups regionally serves as a tireless advocate for commercial real estate interests with Tamara Small leading the charge regarding legislative and policy matters on Beacon Hill. Begelfer is also involved with numerous philanthropic endeavors, most notably the NAIOP Charity Golf Tournament. Since its inception, the annual event has raised over $3 million for Heading Home Inc., which provides emergency, transitional and permanent housing and support services to low-income and homeless families and individuals in Greater Boston.
National Development President Thomas M. Alperin presented Begelfer with the award. “Thank you for your many contributions, not only to the commercial real estate industry but the local business and civic community as a whole,” the former NAIOP Massachusetts Chairman told Begelfer in front of a gathering numbered above 1,000. “You have big shoes to fill, but we know Tamara and Reesa are a fantastic team, and we all look forward to working with them in this next phase of NAIOP,” Alperin said, adding to Begelfer, “It is hard to imagine you having a leisurely retirement, so rather than a farewell tonight, this is really a recognition of all you have accomplished and a wish for continued success. We are a better community with voices like yours shaping Boston’s civic and charitable organizations.”
Begelfer accepted his award to a robust standing ovation with his trademark dose of humor. “Tonight I couldn’t be more honored than to receive an award named after someone that I so highly respected . . . It is humbling for me to be following in the footsteps of so many exceptional recipients of this award. So, over the next HOUR, I plan to . . . ” he began to peals of laughter in feigning technical difficulties with a nonexistent power point presentation. The honoree then turned serious, thanking his “exceptional staff” (including former COO Fran Schiff), and highlighting the work its staff, as well as NAIOP members and volunteers, have been able to accomplish during his tenure.
“The way to judge an organization is to ask the question, ‘Will it be missed?’ And when I consider all that we’ve accomplished over these past 28 years, I know that all of you would agree that what we’ve done by working at it, around the Commonwealth, is remarkable. And please note that I said ‘We’,” Begelfer emphasized.
JLL representatives including Benjamin Heller, James Tierney and Frank Petz presented the 2018 Distinguished Real Estate Award to Related Beal, with Petz handling the lion’s share of the duties. “2013 was a big year. Beal and Related came together as one,” he recounted. “Old school meets cutting edge. Local meets global. The perfect marriage. Boston and New York . . . it’s the best of both worlds,” he observed, adding, “It really did capture the best of what you bring from New York and the love and true endearment to our city of Boston. And that has resulted in making a true difference here.”
Petz commended Related Beal for creating pioneering, creative and visionary projects, but also praised them for social conscience the firm embodies, particularly for The Beverly, Boston’s first 100 percent workforce and affordable housing development in 25 years. “Putting the pieces of that puzzle together was magnificent for the city,” he said.
Related Beal President Kimberly Sherman Stamler thanked NAIOP for help getting her integrated into the CRE community upon arriving from New York City in the early 2000s, and for their continuing support of Related Beal and the CRE industry. She also expressed gratitude to Bruce Beal and Robert Beal, who in 1969 took over the family business founded in 1878, the fourth generation to lead the firm. Robert Beal stepped away from day-to-day operations in 2016 while Bruce Beal remains as chairman, but the brothers turned over the organizational duties to Stamler in 2016.
“(The Beals) created a great legacy, steeped in partnership with the city and communities across the Commonwealth,” said Stamler. “Their tremendous guidance and unwavering commitment to our city has provided a strong foundation to all of us at Related Beal to build on, and we owe both Robert and Bruce a tremendous amount of gratitude for their vision. At Related Beal, we are pleased to contribute and to continue that tradition, which is exemplified in the many attributes of the award that we are receiving tonight—community betterment, philanthropy and community engagement.”
Related Executive VP Bruce Beal Jr. followed Stamler and told the gathering, “My dad and my uncle really would have loved to have been here tonight, especially my uncle; he has done so much for the city and this would really mean so much to him to receive this award. We have been very lucky to be able to build in Boston and we love doing it every day, so thank you.”
VIEW PHOTO GALLERY HEREDavid Begelfer Accepting Edward H. Linde Public Service Award Frank Petz, JLL Kimberly Sherman Stamler, Related Beal Reesa Fischer, David Begelfer, Tamara Small