Lee & Associates hires Herskowitz as COO

November 09, 2011 01:37PM

Joel Herskowitz, the former president and CEO of Grubb & Ellis, has joined the newly formed New York City arm of commercial brokerage Lee & Associates, taking the title of COO, Lee & Associates announced today.

“Joel is a legend in this city and his knowledge and experience will be crucial as we move forward in developing this office,” said James Wacht, president of Lee & Associates NYC. “The transactions will be there, but what we need to do now is find those brokers with the experience, knowledge and attitude to mold this office into a top brokerage firm. That’s what Joel will provide — a strategy for recruitment and retention.”

Lee & Associates set up shop in New York earlier this month as part of its Northeast and national expansion strategy. The New York office was formed through a merger with Sierra Realty. As The Real Deal previously reported, the new company now has 14 brokers and agents (brought over from Sierra), but by the end of next year they expect it to have 10 new hires in office, retail and multi-family leasing.

Herskowitz served as president and CEO of Grubb & Ellis New York from 2001 to 2006, later becoming a senior director at Cushman & Wakefield.

“I’m fortunate to be getting the opportunity with Lee NYC,” Herskowitz, who is also a managing partner with the firm, said in a statement. “This office has made clear its established goals. I have every intention of meeting those goals and then surpassing them.” –– Katherine Clarke