Owen M. Beitsch, Senior Principal of Real Estate Research Consultants, Inc., A GAI Company (RERC), has been active in the management and execution of complex studies for public and private clients since 1983. His background includes public planning and finance as well as real estate development. In addition to some 3,500 multi-family units financed and developed during his tenure at the Tennessee Housing Development Agency, he has coordinated public sector participation in urban mixed-use projects in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and Providence, RI. These latter projects are each anchored by a major convention center and include office, hotel and retail elements and represent investments in excess of $100 million.

He is active in a number of civic and business organizations. Among other things, he is a founding member of the Orlando Neighborhood Improvement Corporation where he served as Chairman for four years. He recently concluded eight years of service as a member of the Orlando Housing Authority Board of Commissioners. In 2010, he was named a Fellow in the American Institute of Certified Planners of Planners, the highest honor bestowed in the urban planning profession and awarded to only about three percent of those designated as certified planners (AICP). Owen is also active on the editorial board of Real Estate Issues published.

Thomas R. Kohler joined Real Estate Research Consultants, Inc., A GAI Company as Senior Principal, in early 2002. Mr. Kohler culminated over 26 years of public service as a senior executive with the City of Orlando, over 22 years of that time serving as Executive Director of Orlando’s Downtown Development Board and Community Redevelopment Agency. In his capacity as director of these two public organizations, he was involved in the planning, programming and development of over $500,000,000 in public and private ventures. As a senior staff member to three mayoral administrations, Mr. Kohler was an integral part of almost every major development project in the City of Orlando over the past 25 years.

For the past 11 years Mr. Kohler has been a Principal with RERC serving numerous public clients. He has provided guidance to cities, counties, and institutions relating to redevelopment of real estate assets. Under continuing services contracts, he has served as ad hoc staff to provide strategic economic assistance to communities large and small.

Mr. Kohler is a graduate of Texas A&M University with a B.A. in Economics and Master in Urban Planning. He also is a graduate of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government. His professional affiliations have included serving as chairman of the board of both the International Downtown Association (1991-92) and the Florida Downtown Development Association (now known as the Florida Redevelopment Association, 1984-85). He served on Governor Martinez’s Task Force on Urban Growth (1988-89). He has been a speaker and panelist at numerous national conferences and has provided consulting services to cities throughout the United States on a variety of projects.

Carol Marchner Westmoreland, is the Executive Director of the FRA. Westmoreland has worked with city governments and their elected and appointed representatives for over thirty years. Carol’s duties working for the Florida League of Cities (FLC) included lobbying for over 18 years at the Florida Capitol, as well as administering a contract for management services with the Florida Redevelopment Association (FRA). She has served as the Executive Director of the FRA since 2000.

cwestmoreland@flcities.com
850-570-7206