Member Highlight

CREW-Miami is an association dedicated to providing a forum for professionals actively involved in the commercial real estate industry, encouraging professional interaction and networking, advancing educational opportunities, and providing a support network for commercial real estate professionals.


Linda Adler, Esq.  – Network Chapter delegate

Linda Adler became a member of CREW-Miami in 1995 after experiencing the buzz and energy at the Bal Harbour National CREW Convention.  Greeted by Joann Soman, Linda was pleased with the welcoming nature of the Convention environment and was impressed by the strength of the professional women involved in CREW.

In 1996, Linda developed a connection with the CREW-Miami president who worked at Adler Group.  Merely a coincidence in name, the Adler Group and Linda found their way to each other through CREW and Linda joined the Adler Group in 1996 as in-house general counsel.  It was a career-altering CREW connection!

Immediately upon joining, Linda became an active CREW-Miami member. She went on to hold a variety of board positions including legal counsel, hospitality director, member to member (M2M) director, as well as Network delegate.  Each position came with its own rewards, but, for Linda, the most satisfying was M2M director because it provided small, intimate gatherings that allowed for meaningful conversations and networking among a true cross-section of the larger membership.

Linda was attracted to commercial real estate law early in her career.  She is currently a shareholder at Carlton Fields and practices transactional real estate.  She notes that the law firm has been incredibly supportive throughout her tenure, granting her the flexibility and opportunity to maximize her CREW experience.

Carlton Fields has won many diversity awards, has several women on its board, provides space for CREW breakfast events four times a year, and has an active Women’s Initiative Network known as WIN. Linda, on average, does several deals annually with other CREW members around the country and is a strong advocate for CREW members doing business with other professional women.

As a female attorney and mother, Linda knew her career choice would place her in a male-dominated world. But CREW gave her access to other working moms, and enabled her to interact with women with similar interests, goals and challenges.  CREW proved to be an ideal forum in which to share ways to balance life and family, while still being professionally successful, valued and happy.

Linda’s path in CREW led her to become a Network Chapter delegate and to learn more about CREW as a national organization.  As a CREW-Miami delegate, she was appointed to serve on the CREW Network Nominating Committee.  This position enabled her to meet the organization’s CEO and senior leadership, and to improve her understanding of the organization’s mechanics.  When, in 2014, she was nominated to become a national director herself, she happily applied for the position.

As a director on the CREW Network board, Linda was exposed to the full networking potential of CREW. She looks at that time as a highlight of her CREW experience.  She was able to give back to the organization, learn leadership tools, and educate herself on non-profits.  Everyone surrounding her was thoughtful, creative and considerate, and she was able to establish lasting relationships, both professional and personal.

Although the time commitment for the national board role was significant, both her family and law firm supported her efforts.  Attending two summits, one convention, and two days at each liaised chapter (one for a member meeting or M2M event and one for a board meeting), Linda was able to maintain her client base, spend time with friends and family, and still find time for herself.  She encourages anyone with aspirations to be part of the national board to do it and make the most of it!

It is challenging to summarize her CREW experience in a few words but, if Linda could itemize the special benefits of CREW, she says it would be leadership growth and potential, business connections, lifetime friends, interacting with women who share similar experiences, and recognizing that your effort has stature, importance and a long lasting effect on those who look to you as a mentor, mother, sister, friend, colleague, attorney, and real estate professional.

Would she do it all over again?  Unequivocally, “Yes!”


Past Highlights


Lori_Hartglass_04072014Lori Hartglass named a “Top Dealmaker of the Year”

Lori Hartglass, a partner at Arnstein & Lehr, was named a “Top Dealmaker of the Year”, in the category of Real Estate Finance, by the Daily Business Review for her involvement in securing a $214 million construction loan that was used to build the Porsche Design Tower in Sunny Isles Beach. Ms. Hartglass received the award on May 16 at Daily Business Review’s “Top Dealmakers” luncheon which recognized attorneys, brokers and finance executives for their involvement in commercial real estate transactions across South Florida over the past year.

She is the founding president of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) of Fort Lauderdale/Palm Beach and past president of CREW Miami.

At Arnstein & Lehr, Mrs. Hartglass is member of the firm’s Real Estate Practice Group. Her responsibilities and expertise include all legal aspects of financing, construction, acquisition and sales on projects throughout the United States, including shopping centers, malls, luxury condominiums, condominium hotels, office buildings and hotels. 


tere-blancaCongratulations to Tere Blanca, President and CEO of Blanca Commercial Real Estate, for recently being selected as one of South Florida Business Journal’s Top 100 Power Leaders. See the slideshow here.



suzanne-hollanderCongratulations to CREW-Miami’s Suzanne Hollander, who was honored with a 2014 Thelma Gibson Award of Excellence from the Women’s Chamber of Commerce of Miami-Dade (corporate category).

The award is given annually to women who have made significant contributions to the advancement of women in our community. The Women’s Chamber was established in 1984 by Thelma Gibson who continues to participate in the organization.


Ellen is shown here with incoming Rotary International President, Ron Burton. She assumed office on July 1, 2013.

Ellen Blasi, New Governor for Rotary District 6990

CREW-Miami member Ellen Blasi has been selected to serve as District Governor for Rotary District 6990 during the 2013-2014 Rotary Year. Ellen is Director of Leasing for The Green Companies in Miami, Florida. She has been a member of CREW-Miami for eight years, having served on the Board of Directors and as head of the UCREW committee. She is currently active on the Scholarship committee.

Ellen has been a member of the Rotary Club of Key Biscayne for fourteen years and served as the club’s President in 2003-2004.

She has been selected as Rotarian of the Year twice by The Rotary Club of Key Biscayne and once by Rotary International Zone 6990.

Rotary District 6990 consists of 51 Rotary Clubs in Broward County, Miami-Dade County and Monroe County in the United States and Grand Bahama Island in the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. Rotary International is a global network of business, professional and community leaders, approximately 1.2 million members in 34,000 clubs worldwide, who volunteer their time and talents to serve communities locally and around the world and form strong, lasting friendships in the process.

Her goal for 2013-2014 is to foster awareness of Rotary and to create more opportunities for involvement of Rotary, in the communities in District 6990.


donna-aboodThe Commonwealth Institute South Florida (TCI) named Donna Abood as one of the Top 50 Women-Led Business Leaders in Florida for 2013.

Donna is Chairman–Founding Partner of Colliers International South Florida. Earlier this year she was inducted into the Hall of Fame of Florida State University’s College of Business, an honor bestowed on alumni who have excelled in their careers.



Danet Linares, Executive Vice President, Blanca Commercial Real Estate, was recognized as a 2012 “Women of Influence” by REAL ESTATE FORUM magazine.

From a field of 200 nominees nationwide, Danet was among the 45 most prominent female executives in commercial real estate to be honored. Amid a still-challenging South Florida office market, she achieved the most productive year of her career thus far.


Congratulations to CREW-Miami members with Blanca Commercial Real Estate, law firm Bilzin Sumberg and Fairchild Partners, who collaborated on a recently complex office lease and land acquisition.

Blanca Commercial Real Estate served as the exclusive agent for the Miami Herald Media Company. Miami Herald and its sister publication El Nuevo Herald will relocate to 3511 NW 91st Avenue in Doral having leased the entire building consisting of 158,265 square feet of office space and will build its own 119,000-sq.-ft. production facility on an adjacent 6.04 acre parcel. Bilzin Sumberg represented the landlord/seller GPA-I and Fairchild Partners was a consultant to Blanca Commercial Real Estate with regards to the industrial market.


Patricia Birch

Pat Birch, 1993-1994 president of CREW-Miami, has been awarded the CRE® (Counselor of Real Estate) credential by The Counselors of Real Estate.

The international group of high profile real estate practitioners provides expert advisory services to clients on complex real property and land-related matters. Pat is vice president of Gallaher & Birch, where she specializes in real estate valuation and consulting, and litigation support. Current CREW-Miami involvement includes serving on the Program Committee, in U-CREW, and the 2011 Nominating Committee.

Unusual circumstances called Pat to the CREW-Miami presidency only six months after she joined. She led our then-young chapter in hosting the first national CREW Network convention to be held in Miami. We’ll welcome national conference here again in 2014.


Congratulations to CREW-Miami members Karyl Argamasilla and Iris Escarra, who were named finalists for the 2010 national CREW Network 20 Under 40 awards.

The awards recognize talented young women who are blazing trails, ascending to senior leadership positions, and making their mark on the commercial real estate industry.