2nd Quarter, 2018
“Non si serra mai una porta che non se n’apra un’altra”: Over the past 25 years, my dear friends Eva and Dieter Mees often quoted this classic Italian proverb to me- “As one Door Closes another Opens”. We would meet once a week for a “cena autentico” of time honored Corbelli family recipes. I reference this in the context of timeless traditions of professional life with the recent transition we’ve just completed with Eric Sahn, DJM’s CFO for the past 15 years. Eric has decided to step down from an active role with the company, while continuing his ongoing obligations to the multiple DJM-sponsored partnerships. Eric was instrumental in ushering in an era of tremendous growth for DJM from his first day on the job in 2003 to his last. We prepared and provided a formal press release last week to the media. “From the earliest days of DJM, Eric has played a critical role in helping us realize our broader vision for creative real estate projects,” said Lindsay Parton, President of DJM Capital Partners. “His talent, skill and good humor has guided us through some exciting times. He has been both a CFO and a wonderful friend. On behalf of our entire organization. I want to thank him for his unwavering dedication to our success and wish him all the best as he enters this exciting new phase of his life.” Below summarizes DJM’s history during Eric’s career with the company.
un momento è come il presente”: As of June 1st, (no time like the present) Ken Lee has been named as Chief Financial Officer and Becky Sullivan as Chief Operating Officer. Ken had previously held the title of Vice President at DJM, working in both acquisitions and asset management capacities to close more than $1 billion in new financing, recapitalizations and acquisitions. He joined the firm in 2011 from US Bank where he was Assistant Vice President, Commercial Real Estate.
Prior to US Bank, Ken worked on Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s real estate investment banking platform and began his career as a Public Accountant at KPMG. He holds a BS from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business as well as an MBA and MA in Real Estate from the University of Southern California and is currently a licensed CPA in the state of California.
“Questa non è una notizia falsa”: Another excerpt from our press release (not fake news): “I am delighted to promote Becky and Ken and formally recognize the tremendous contributions they both have made to our firm,” said D. John Miller, Founder and CEO of DJM Capital Partners. “Since joining DJM, Becky has played an integral role in many of our most important projects and I have relied heavily on her as our firm has undergone significant growth in multiple markets. Ken has been a trusted and valued member of our finance team since his first day on the job and I am confident in his continued guidance as he takes on a more prominent role in our organization.” Becky has been with the company for more than 14 years and most recently as Senior Vice President of Construction and Development. At DJM she has overseen more than $500 million of development projects including Pacific City, a 191,000 square-foot, mixed-use development in Huntington Beach; Lido Marina Village, a boutique retail, restaurant and creative office development totaling 116,000 square feet in Newport Beach; and Bella Terra, a mixed-use open-air shopping, dining, entertainment and residential complex totaling more than one million square feet in Huntington Beach. She holds a BA in Economics from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
“Il processo decisionale”: With Eric’s departure, the company has been reorganized with a new emphasis on a “Decision-Driven Structure” taken right out of the Harvard Business School playbook, with enhanced communication and goal setting between its Senior Executive team, which include Patricia Apel, Heather Hollister, Oleg Sivryuk, Brett Thornton, Bob Brown, Stenn Parton, along with Becky and Ken. For most companies, this effort of reorganization is painful, requires a fundamental rethinking of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats; essentially an audit on how the company functions and makes strategic decision on growth. The goals of the audit are to understand the set of decisions that are critical to the success of the company’s strategy and to determine the organizational level at which those decisions should be made and executed to create the most value. I can report that the DJM team has embraced this initiative with intelligence and energy over the past 90 days with great success. Both Lindsay and I support the organizational strategy of first understanding the sources of value in the company and then organizing the macrostructure around them. Fundamentally, Ken and Becky are creating “teams” dedicated to the success of each department; Property-Operations, Construction-Development. Leasing, Accounting-Finance, Creative Retail Services, Marketing-Communications, and Investor Relations. Ironically or coincidentally, this macrostructure in its current form at DJM was an idea that Eric and I discussed, much to his credit; - As I mentioned earlier, “Non si serra mai una porta che non se n’apra un’altra.” Goditi la Tua Estate-Vi Auguro una Buona Giornata. Enjoy your Summer & Have a Great Day!
DJM Capital Partners, Inc.
D. John Miller, Founder & CEO