The Real Deal New York

Spinola sends note to REBNY board explaining 2015 exit

Association’s long-time president forced to address FT story revealing retirement plan

June 16, 2014 04:44PM
By Rich Bockmann

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From left: Steven Spinola and Rob Speyer

In a statement sent to the REBNY board of directors Monday afternoon, Steven Spinola used the word “premature” to describe an article published earlier in the day that announced his plan to step down as president in late 2015. The letter, however, did confirm the news of his exit.

“I write to you with respect to a premature story that appeared today in the Financial Times regarding my continued role as president of The Real Estate Board of New York,” wrote Spinola.

Earlier in the day the Financial Times broke the news that, after nearly 30 years as the body’s president, Spinola will step down near the end of 2015, at which point he will continue to work with the board in a consulting and advisory role.

A REBNY spokesman said Spinola had not planned to make an announcement until closer to the end of 2015.

In his letter to the board members, Spinola said he looks forward to serving the remaining 18 months of his contract and celebrated successes such as tripling REBNY’s membership, forging ahead in the face of adversities such as 9/11, financial crises, Superstorm Sandy and the East Harlem building explosion since he took the reins.

“As you know, I recently signed an extension of my contract with the Real Estate Board of New York that gives me the honor and privilege to continue as REBNY’s President through the end of 2015,” wrote Spinola, who has been president of the organization since 1986. “I had decided at that time that this would be my final contract with this extraordinary organization, although I have agreed to continue to serve in an advisory and consulting role for a number of years to follow.”

A committee led by REBNY Chairman Rob Speyer will be in charge of finding a replacement.

“I have had the great honor of working alongside many giants of the real estate industry – owners, brokers, developers, architects, managers, attorneys, and a dedicated, talented and underappreciated staff,” Spinola wrote. “The remaining year and one-half will be no different.  REBNY will continue to work  to create more housing, good jobs and opportunities for all New Yorkers.  I look forward to the continued partnership with Rob Speyer, our extraordinary Chairman and thank him and all my past Chairs for their trust and confidence.”

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