The Real Deal New York

REBNY promotes Whelan to EVP

Former Bloomberg aide to increase involvement in political matters
July 13, 2015 01:25PM

The Real Estate Board of New York promoted James Whelan, a former Bloomberg administration official and Muss Development executive, to executive vice president.

Whelan served as REBNY’s senior vice president of public affairs since 2010 and will now “lead the organization’s initiatives to address select political, communication and advocacy issues,” REBNY said Monday.

Whelan’s new role will see him “wade deeper into political waters,” according to Capital New York, with the real estate industry needing to reach an agreement with construction unions on whether to mandate a prevailing wage for projects receiving the 421a tax incentive.

In his previous role, Whelan worked on advocacy and political issues including the organization’s strategy on crane operators and its efforts to change how the city evaluates historic districts.

Before joining REBNY, he served as senior vice president for public affairs at Muss Development and also as chief of staff and senior advisor to Daniel Doctoroff, the deputy mayor for economic development under Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Whelen’s experience also includes time as executive director of the Hudson Yards Coalition.

REBNY president John Banks succeeded Steven Spinola as head of the influential industry organization at the end of last month. – Rey Mashayekhi