Chairman, Managing Principal
Michael W. Brennan is a Co-Founder, Chairman, and Managing Principal of Brennan Investment Group. Mr. Brennan has orchestrated more than $10 billion in industrial real estate transactions in the course of his 25-year career.
Prior to forming Brennan Investment Group, Mr. Brennan co-founded First Industrial Realty Trust (NYSE: FR) in 1994, and served as President, Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors until late 2008. Under his direction First Industrial assisted many of the nation’s largest industrial users in completing complex supply chain reconfigurations, and attracted investment partners including The Carlyle Group, the Kuwait Finance House, Union Bank of Switzerland, ING, and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System.
Under his direction, The Guide to Classifying Industrial Property Types was written. The only book of its kind, the guide presents a precise classification system for industrial properties and provides an in-depth review of the characteristics and evolution of the industrial property sector. The Urban Land Institute (ULI) acquired the rights to the guide and collaborated with First Industrial on a second edition, which is currently available through ULI.
Often sought as an industry expert on industrial real estate, Mr. Brennan has appeared on CNBC, CNNfn and Bloomberg Television. Mr. Brennan is a prominent leader in the real estate community and is a member of ULI and the World Presidents' Organization. Mr. Brennan was named Commercial Property News’ "Industrial Property Executive of the Year" in 2000 and one of Irish American Magazine’s Top 100 Business Leaders in America in 2003.
Before co-founding First Industrial, Mr. Brennan was a President and Partner in The Shidler Group, a nationally prominent real estate firm specializing in value-add real estate transactions. He was a founding investor of Tri-Net Property Trust and Co-Founder and member of the Board of Directors for Pacific Office Properties (AMEX: PCE), an office REIT that owns institutional quality properties in Honolulu, California, and Arizona. Mr. Brennan is a former member of the Board of Directors of the Chicago Public Library Foundation, which provides on-going funding, through its endowments and annual fundraising, for collections, book acquisition and a variety of community-based programs that contribute to the excellence of the Chicago Public Library. He began his industrial real estate career in 1984, as an Investment Specialist with CB Commercial. Mr. Brennan earned his Bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Notre Dame in 1979.
Mr. Brennan currently serves as Executive Director of the University of Wisconsin’s James A. Graaskamp Center for Real Estate, a program that is consistently ranked among the best real estate programs in the world.
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