Our association is about members. Strong leadership and engagement drive the mission to ensure your success and the vibrancy of the Commercial Real Estate industry. More than 700 members helped move our organization forward to propel commercial real estate practitioners through information and data sharing, legislative advocacy and the premiere networking opportunities in the State.
Social Media helps us tell our story: CARW increased engagement on Twitter to nearly 265,000, and engaged more than 175,000 times on Facebook. This year we “Facebook-Lived” numerous events and presentations so they can be shared. This engagement helps amplify CARW’s presence in the community and hone our Voice on issues that matter to commercial real estate. CARW has received national visibility for its creative programming and legislative efforts. If you’re not connected to us on social media – you should be: Twitter: @carw1 | Facebook: CARW | Instagram: @carw_1
CARW works diligently and strategically with partners at WRA and the NAR to leverage the nearly 1.2 million members that help support efforts that move our industry.
A few other highlights from 2017:
We started the year moving our home from 735 N Water Street to 250 East Wisconsin Ave. We love both of our homes in the heart of Downtown Milwaukee and are very happy to be a part of the revitalization of the 250 E Wisconsin building. with the opportunities and new activity along West Wisconsin Ave.
Working with other industry groups and Associations we were able to leverage countless opportunities for our industry and our members. Unmatchable happy hours at new locations including: Lakefront Brewery, Broken Bat Brewing Company, Bavarian Bierhaus, San Giorgio Pizzeria, and Irgens 833 brought hundreds of new members and networking contacts. Also in 2017 CARW partnered with WCREW(Wisconsin Commercial Real Estate Women) on the Summer Sampler at Paul Davis Restoration. The event featured beer and liquor samples from across the region, food, river cruises and cigar sampling. In fall, we worked with Aertropolis at an unforgettable launch of the program at a airplane hanger at Mitchel International Airport. In winter, CARW partnered with BID 21 and Downtown Milwaukee to highlight downtown Milwaukee storefront space for the holidays.
Lunch and Learns: this monthly series brought expertise on topics from construction costs, the Milwaukee 7, Foxconn, economic development, revitalization, Harbor District initiative, NAR policy, marketing the region and more. More than 350 members participated in this year’s lunch and learn series.
Roundtable Event: nearly 250 attended to engage with 30 plus roundtable leaders on topics from 1031 Exchange, tax credits, the Bucks arena, construction cost, and the latest market overview. The event was sponsored by Old National Bank. The 2018 Event is scheduled for February 13, 2018 at the newly-remodeled Italian Conference Center.
March Madness: BMO Harris Bank presented our downtown March Madness event at Evolution Gastro Pong with over 200 attendees! Extra excitement came from tournament attendees stopping by between rounds at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Government Day: brought more than 50 members to Madison to meet with legislators on issues to ensure key policy proposals adopted are advancing the commercial real estate industry. Members of CARW were able to testify in support of an important lease bill that day. Our efforts throughout the year included support of the Historic Tax Credit and support of a sustainable solution for infrastructure funding, specifically to improve I-94. CARW was a recognized as a leader in these conversations and continues to push for these issues. Also in 2017, members of CARW helped improve the OSL (Out of State License Law) with new language and a new form for out of state tenant rep transactions. Chairman Curt Pitzen authored an op-ed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel supporting the Foxconn legislation and Jeff Hoffman authored a piece on pending tax assessment legislation, specifically the Triple Net Lease Bill. The 2018 Government day is scheduled for January 31, 2018.
Retail Event: this joint event with ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers) featured Jay Schauer of Allen-Edmonds Corporation and Garrick Brown of Cushman & Wakefield | BOERKE as well as Kyle Cherek, Host of Wisconsin Foodie. More than 20 retailers attended and an excess of 60 roundtables were executed. Nearly 300 attended this growing one-day conference. Feedback suggested this event was one of the best events in the region. The event was sponsored by Landmark Credit Union and networking by Commercial Property Associates. The keynote presentation was sponsored by Husch Blackwell. This year’s event will be held on April 18th at Potawatomi Hotel.
In May, CARW members traveled to Washington, D.C. with WRA and NAR to meet with Wisconsin legislators including Speaker Paul Ryan, Senators Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin, and Congressmen Gwen Moore, Sean Duffy, Mike Gallagher, Ron Kind, Mark Pocan, Jim Sensenbrenner and Glenn Grothman to advocate for changes to EB-5, 1031 Exchange and real estate depreciation. This year’s session was important in shaping the national conversation on tax changes being proposed.
The 2017 Golf Outing welcomed nearly 250 golfers at Northshore Country Club. The annual event continues to grow with massages, cigars and more. Oh, and we had a solar eclipse! Attendees received CARW fidget spinners, sunglasses, towels and umbrellas. The event raised more than $5,000 for REACH (Real Estate Alliance for Charity)! This year’s golf tournament is scheduled for August 20, 2018 once again at North Shore Country Club.
Deal of the Year and Annual Meeting Event sponsored by Tri-City: CARW members met the 2017 recipients of the prestigious CARW Deal of the Year awards for Industrial, Investment, Office and Retail. The event was held at the historic Grain Exchange. Other awards went to Heather Turner Loth of EUA for Affiliate of the Year, Dale Shaver of Waukesha County Department of Parks and Land Use for Friend of CARW, Mark Hogan of WEDC for the Commercial Real Estate Impact and Jeff Hoffman, SIOR, CCIM of Cushman & Wakefield | BOERKE for REALTOR® of the Year. Also, Ben Adank of SARA Investment Real Estate was initiated as our 2018 Chairman and new board members welcomed: Adam Williquette of Anderson Commercial and Ryan Trost of Phoenix Investment Real Estate.
BizTimes Development Conference: CARW partnered with BizTimes on the 2017 Development Conference showcasing “Emerging from Chicago’s Shadow or Entering Into its Orbit?” about the I-94 corridor between Milwaukee and Illinois. This event featured speakers Kelly O’Brien, Sam Badger, Andy Bruce and Ed Harrington. CARW President and CEO Tracy Johnson gave an update on federal tax issues and the impact it has on commercial real estate. More than 450 attended.
Milwaukee Press Club Panel: Peter Feigin, president of the Milwaukee Bucks, Tracy Johnson, president and CEO of CARW, Matt Rinka, principal of Rinka Chung Architecture Inc. and Bobby Wiltgen of Owner of Who’s on Third, Cantina and Oak Barrel Public House discussed what was next with the $524 million Bucks arena and how it will impact the bars and restaurants and other businesses in the downtown area.
Holiday Party: the first Monday of December – every year – kicks off the commercial real estate holiday season. Nearly 350 people came out to spread cheer with a pianist headlining the night’s festivities. The event was sponsored by 330 Kilbourn and took place at the Pfister Hotel.
Market Update: this joint event with NAIOP-WI showcased annual data and trends. Experts from Industrial, Investment, Office and Retail sectors gave their predictions for 2018. Welcomed to the stage was Governor Scott Walker to kick-off the program. Presenters included: Alyssa Geisler of CBRE, Jim Larkin of Colliers International, Scott Satula of Mid-America Real Estate – WI, LLC and Ben Adank of SARA Investment Real Estate. The program was moderated by Robert Habich of Davis & Kuelthau, s.c. and presented by MB Financial Bank. Governor Scott Walker gave a brief presentation at the top of the program.
CARW leaders held key positions on NAR committees including the Commercial Committee (Tracy Johnson) and Legislative Affairs Committee (Jeff Hoffman, SIOR, CCIM). We are working to engage more individuals in these committees to give greater connection to our State.
Members participated in RPAC in record numbers for the second year in a row. 30% of members contribute to RPAC at an average of $35. These dollars help propel our CRE issues and support candidates that help grow our collective voice at City Hall, in Madison and in Washington DC. There are 35 members who participated at the Large Donor level and had premiere opportunities to meet with Governor Walker and Senator Leah Vukmir.
The CARW NextGen group kicked off in 2017 with 14 individuals participating in 9 month exclusive program. Members met learned from the best of the best from all facets of the commercial real estate industry and had the opportunity to tour the Milwaukee Bucks Arena and new 1433 Water Street project. 18 next-generation commercial real estate professionals will go through the 9-month program starting in January 2018 and will be announced in early January.