Steven L. Newman Real Estate Institute

Alumni Spotlight: Ryan Elazari (MS, ’13): Senior Director, Empire Management

Alumni Spotlight

Ryan Elazari Senior Director, Empire Management

I attended the Master of Science in Real Estate program at Baruch’s Zicklin School of Business in 2013 because of my unyielding curiosity for the real estate sector. Growing up in New York’s tight-knit Persian community, where many professionals are involved in the industry, real estate was a frequent topic of conversation. Being raised in Manhattan, I have enjoyed living and working in one of the greatest business centers in the world, particularly as it relates to real estate. Whether a developer, designer, contractor, hotelier, or broker, opportunities abound across the five boroughs. Following graduation from George Washington University, I pursued a variety of positions in the field and out. I initially worked as a compliance analyst for the Bank of New York Mellon, but soon recognized that I was not suitably challenged by the position. My experience at the Bank of New York Mellon afforded me the knowledge and perspective that allowed me to appreciate the banking world, but ultimately, I realized that real estate was my primary interest. After applying to multiple real estate positions, I was hired at Empire Management as an Associate. Empire Management has provided me with excellent hands-on leadership opportunities through strategic management of multiple projects and their day-to-day operations.

After graduating from the program, I was promoted to Senior Director of my firm. I began working directly with the CEO, VP of Acquisitions, and Director of Construction to collaborate on future acquisitions and development projects to build our portfolio. Using the skills and knowledge attained at Baruch, I was able to lead planning to reduce the carbon footprint of Empire’s portfolio of commercial and residential properties with cutting-edge technology and design. These sustainable changes were both cost-effective and easy to implement. Outside of my work at Empire, I have since pursued new investments in real estate technology and developments outside of Manhattan. It is with the confidence and industry knowledge from Baruch that I felt equipped to pursue these new ventures. It is also with these skills that I maintain a creative eye and pulse on an ever-changing market to achieve success.

I am very grateful for the opportunities that Baruch provided me to build my career. I gained a wide range of experiences, including a world-class education and exposure to New York’s real estate communities. My professors, classmates, and connections I made through the program were key drivers to where I am today. My advice to current Baruch students is to possess the vision to not only think big picture but also to have a strategic mindset revolving around intricate details. Do the small tasks, and you will learn how greatness is built. Take advantage of all the opportunities along the way- this will afford you to have a diverse perspective on how to be successful in the real estate industry.