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CEO, BRE Properties
Ranching might have seemed a more likely career for Connie Moore, MBA 80, based on her obsession with cows as a kid. But that came later. It was the influence of her father, a Santa Clara County developer, that steered her toward real estate.
And it was the skills and self-assurance gained at Haas that helped Moore reach her current post as CEO of San Francisco-based BRE Properties.
“Haas gave me the confidence that I can handle anything. Bring it on. I became fearless,” says Moore, CEO of BRE since 2005. BRE is the nation’s seventh largest residential real estate investment trust, with 73 apartment communities.
Historical perspective has helped Moore keep her cool in the current real estate meltdown. During her first job as an analyst at BRE after college, construction loan interest rates skyrocketed to 25 percent. Builders were handing back the keys to properties left and right, she recalls.
Nothing, however, could have prepared her for BRE’s stock dropping from nearly $73 per share in 2007 to $17 in 2009, which Moore acknowledges “shook her foundation.” Yet, she sees a bright future for REITs.
"Given their liquidity, public REITs are currently enjoying access to capital, both debt and equity, not available to private companies," says Moore, who has worked in REITs around the country and in London. “Many REITs have deleveraged their balance sheets so they will be positioned for growth as the economy recovers.”
Moore says she loves the diversity of her work. “You deal with marketing issues, people issues, capital issues, and must have an understanding of general economic conditions,” she says. "No two properties are ever alike."
But Moore hasn’t forgotten her alter-ego cowgirl persona. In 2006, she and her husband bought a 400-acre Texas ranch, which Moore visits four times a year. She feeds the 50 head of longhorn cattle, gives them shots, and has even learned how to get them in a chute.
And she makes it clear that while doing ranch-hand work for part of the day, she spends the rest running BRE Properties from her Texas getaway.