Steve brings more than 40 years of experience in real estate and development advisory services. He has authored several articles, spoken at numerous state and national association conferences, and served on several community assistance panels. He is a member of the Counselors of Real Estate, a member of the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Certified Planners, and a full member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI). His civic affiliations include the Civic Federation, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs Board of Visitors, and the ULI Public-Private Partnership Council. He has served as series chairman for the ULI Chicago District Council's "An Agenda for Growth of the Chicago Region," and as chair of the ULI Chicago District Council from 1998 to 2000. In April 2013, he received the James Felt Creative Counseling Award of the Counselors of Real Estate for his development advisory role on The Shops and Residences of Uptown Park Ridge project. Steve holds a B.A. from Goddard College in Plainfield, VT and an M.S. in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Stephen B. Friedman, FAICP, CRE
Executive Vice President
Tony is a specialist in feasibility, strategy and financial aspects of community and economic development. While at SB Friedman, he has led numerous assignments including tax increment financing (TIF) analyses and eligibility studies, area revitalization strategies, feasibility-testing for redevelopment scenarios, negotiation and structuring of public-private financing for high-impact projects, and a range of New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC)-related services. Tony has participated in the origination of over $1.3 billion of public-private financing (including tax credit, TIF, revenue bond, and gap financing loan transactions) in support of over $3.4 billion of project investment. Of this activity, about 86% took place in low-income and disinvested communities as part of economic revitalization efforts. Tony has extensive NMTC-related experience, including the preparation of multiple successful NMTC allocation applications, securing $899 million of allocation and structuring/closing over $960 million in NMTC transactions. He holds both Master's and Bachelor of Arts degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the American Planning Association, Urban Land Institute, Lambda Alpha International-Ely Chapter, and the Council of Development Finance Agencies (for which he also serves as national TIF curriculum advisor and instructor and lead editor of CDFA’s 2009 Advanced TIF Guide).
Ranadip Bose, AICP
Senior Vice President
Ranadip has deep expertise in real estate market analysis, financial analysis, economic and fiscal impact studies, and urban economic development strategy. He excels in tackling various urban economic issues and delivering research-based implementation strategies to clients. He has led a consulting effort to foster economic development in the manufacturing sector under the Chicago Sustainable Industries initiative, and evaluated the effectiveness of various value capture mechanisms for transit improvements for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning. Other experience includes a market analysis and implementation of the lakefront area in downtown Cleveland, redevelopment strategies in connection with the Michael Reese Hospital site in Chicago, and a sector-based market analysis and master planning process for the Milwaukee 30th Street Industrial Corridor. Ranadip has a Master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a Bachelor’s in Architecture from Jadavpur University, India. He is a member of the American Planning Association, Lambda Alpha International-Ely Chapter, and Urban Land Institute.
Geoffrey Dickinson, AICP
Senior Vice President
Geoff is a real estate and economic development advisor with expertise in public-private finance partnerships, financial deal reviews and gap analysis, special taxing district (TIF, business district/special service area) establishment, market analysis and development strategy, and project implementation advisory services. While at SB Friedman, Geoff has assisted Presence Health in securing TIF and New Markets Tax Credit funding to help pay for the relocation of its affiliate, Resurrection University, from Oak Park to Chicago; and led numerous deal reviews for both public and private sector clients to evaluate or determine the need for and amount of financial assistance, including the City of Brookfield, Wisconsin and the Village of Lakewood, Illinois. He has also provided market-based development advisory services to public, private and institutional clients, and led multiple special district eligibility studies and designations throughout Illinois. Geoff holds a B.A. in History from Northwestern University, and a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree from the University of Michigan. He is a member of the American Planning Association, and serves on the boards of the Illinois Tax Increment Association and Lambda Alpha International-Ely Chapter, and the Presence Health Community Leadership Board for West Town.
Fran Lefor Rood, AICP
Senior Vice President
As Senior Vice President, Fran offers customized development advice grounded in her understanding of real estate markets and extensive experience in guiding clients to reach their development and community goals. Her ability to analyze various market scenarios and recommend strategic redevelopment options that work for both the public and private sectors has been key to informing numerous policy and development decisions. She is also skilled in successfully managing the many moving parts of large-scale and complex projects, while considering the big picture goals. Fran’s work includes creating a downtown revitalization strategy in Midland, Michigan for the Michigan Baseball Foundation, providing market analyses and development strategies for the Cleveland lakefront and Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, and designating a new type of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district to generate revenue for $2.1 billion of transit improvements for the Chicago Transit Authority. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Fran was a Senior Research Analyst at the Cook County Assessor’s Office. She holds a Master of Urban Planning and Policy degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Policy from the University of Chicago. Fran is a member of the American Planning Association, Illinois Housing Council and Lambda Alpha International-Ely Chapter, and is active in the Illinois Tax Increment Association. She is registered with the SEC as a Municipal Advisor.
Lance specializes in market and financial feasibility analysis, economic development strategy, and public-private partnership finance. Since joining SB Friedman, Lance has focused on applying his data-driven technical capabilities to evaluate development opportunities, guide the use of public incentives, and inform land use decisions. He regularly advises public and private sector clients regarding highest and best use, the location of catalytic projects, and implementation strategies to achieve development goals. Lance’s experience includes delivering a market and financial feasibility analysis for two subarea plans in Chicago, developing a strategic plan for market-based real estate investment in downtown Midland, Michigan, and preparing a pro forma review and TIF capacity analysis for a high-rise development in downtown Milwaukee. Lance holds a Master of Real Estate Development degree from the University of Maryland, and a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Planning and Development, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Systems, from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He is a member of the Real Estate Investment Association and Urban Land Institute.
Ryan has a background in community and economic development, real estate market analysis, and land use strategy. His experience includes analysis of smart growth development in metro Atlanta, econometric forecasting for fifty real estate markets across the United States, and asset management for a mixed-use complex in Shanghai, China. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Ryan was a graduate research assistant at the Enterprise Innovation Institute, where he advised clients on local economic development strategy, workforce development and economic impact analysis. Ryan holds a Master of City and Regional Planning, with concentrations in land and economic development, from Georgia Tech, and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in finance, from Boston University. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute.
Vice President / Marketing Director
Grace joined SB Friedman in 2010 and serves as Marketing Director. She has over 10 years of experience in marketing and communications for both professional service firms and not-for-profits. Grace collaborates with the senior management team to identify and manage new business development pursuits, and is responsible for managing all proposal and qualifications submittals. She also maintains and updates the firm’s marketing and communications materials, and has led the firm through a rebranding process. Grace received a Bachelor of Arts degree in the College of Letters and French Studies from Wesleyan University (CT). She is a member of the Society for Marketing Professional Services.
Paul A. Dillon, CMC
Paul is an expert in the areas of transportation land use and aviation-related development. He is the president and CEO of Dillon Consulting Services LLC, a Chicago-based business and non-profit advisory firm. With over 35 years of experience, he has directed many studies, among them the economic impact of commuter rail station location alternatives, an analysis of land use at Chicago O'Hare International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport, a redevelopment program for Navy Pier, a tax and employment analysis of the North Loop Redevelopment area, and market and financial feasibility analyses for a new downtown headquarters for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago. Paul has served on numerous non-profit boards and federal, gubernatorial, legislative and mayoral advisory commissions and committees. He is currently a trustee of the Chicago School of Professional Psychology, and a Public Member and Commissioner of the national Commission for Case Manager Certification.
Associate Project Manager
Caitlin has a background in community and economic development, public-private development finance, and urban planning. She specializes in market analysis and redevelopment strategy as well as special district eligibility studies/designation. Her experience at SB Friedman includes conducting market analyses for the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, the City of Yankton, South Dakota, and Sarpy County, Nebraska; and TIF/Business District designations and reporting for the Cities of Chicago and Milwaukee, and numerous municipalities in Illinois. She also provided market-driven insight and analysis to the Village of Schaumburg to help create an implementable land use plan for the Motorola Campus. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Caitlin worked for the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District as a policy and planning researcher, where she conducted market and financial analysis to determine feasible financing models for their public realm improvements. Caitlin holds a Master of Science in City Design and Social Science from the London School of Economics and Political Science, a dual Master of Business and Master of Arts in Community Development and Planning from Clark University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Wheaton College (MA). She is a member of the Urban Land Institute.
Associate Project Manager
Jennifer has a background in public-private partnerships, nonprofit capital projects, and city development initiatives. Her experience includes managing strategic projects that drive community-based economic growth and development for a diverse range of clients, including community-based organizations, local development corporations, national developers and major cultural institutions. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Jennifer managed a portfolio of more than 40 private-sector projects that accessed New York City discretionary funds of over $460 million (and had total project expenditures over $970 million) while at the New York City Economic Development Corporation. Jennifer holds a Master of Public Policy from Duke University, and a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University. She is a member of the Urban Land Institute.
Rob has a background in forming strategic public-private partnerships, managing nonprofit and community-based organization capacity-building programs, and running community and economic development initiatives. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Rob worked for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation’s New York City office where he managed the compliance and reimbursement of about $2.5 million in funding for nonprofit and community-based programs. In this same role, Rob also worked closely with a variety of New York City agencies to secure New Markets Tax Credit financing and the NYC Industrial Development Fund capital for projects focused on economic development and investment in the City’s low-income communities. Rob holds a Master of Public Administration with a focus on Urban Development and Sustainability from Baruch College, and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and Legal Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Caren specializes in urban economics, land use planning and real estate development. Prior to joining SB Friedman, she worked with the New York City Economic Development Corporation on a variety of land use projects including a neighborhood rezoning in Upper Manhattan and a site redevelopment on Staten Island. Caren also spent time working as a Mayoral Fellow in the Chicago Mayors Office where she was involved with the launch of the Retail Thrive Zone Program and prepared preliminary research for the Industrial Growth Zone Program. Caren holds a Masters in Regional Planning from Cornell University with a concentration in Economic Development Planning, and a Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration and Urban and Regional Planning from Miami University.
Kara specializes in public finance, urban economics and transportation planning. Her work includes the use of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to facilitate catalytic development, redevelopment and infrastructure projects throughout the Midwest. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Kara focused on economic development, land use and multimodal transportation policy as a Policy Analyst at the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP). She brings broad experience in urban planning from her previous roles at the Civic Federation, Regional Transportation Authority (RTA), and Chicago Transit Authority (CTA). Kara holds a Master of Urban Planning and Policy degree and a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Planning and Public Affairs from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where she was an NCAA Division I Academic-All American softball player. She is a member of the Urban Land Institute and Women in Public Finance.
Michael has a background in economic impact analysis, transportation policy and planning, and economic development. His experience includes conducting feasibility studies on large-scale transportation projects in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, as well as creating platforms to analyze various Pittsburgh economic development indicators such as entrepreneurship and energy efficiency. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Michael worked at the American Postal Workers Union in Washington, DC, where he performed cost analyses on their vast transportation and logistics network. He also worked as an intern at the Pittsburgh Department of City Planning where he spearheaded a bicycle/pedestrian data collection and analysis program in support of data-driven, long-range infrastructure planning. Michael holds a Master of Science in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Michigan.
Ethan has a background in urban planning, public-private finance and real estate analysis. His experience includes conducting a market analysis for transit-oriented development in Chelsea, Massachusetts as well as securing EB-5 foreign investment eligibility for community enterprises in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Ethan was a graduate fellow with the City of Minneapolis where he analyzed implementation strategy for an innovation district near the University of Minnesota. Ethan holds a Master in Urban Planning, with concentrations in Real Estate Development and Urban Design, from Harvard University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies and Economics from Washington University in St. Louis. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute and the American Planning Association.
Associate, Community Development Finance
Thomas has a background in finance, economic development and entrepreneurship. His experience includes analyzing market conditions for seed-stage companies in central New York and managing a mixed-use development grant in New York’s Southern Tier. He has also been involved in facilitating international development by establishing businesses in rural Rwanda, while working with ThinkImpact, a global social enterprise. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Thomas contributed to downtown and neighborhood business district revitalization efforts while interning at the Binghamton Economic Development Office. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Management, with a concentration in Financial Engineering and a minor in Economics, from Binghamton University.
Ryan Schmitt, AICP
Ryan’s background is in urban planning, community and economic development, housing, and policy analysis. His experience includes housing market research, policy analysis, plan implementation, land use, and physical planning. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Ryan was the Research and Policy Analyst at the Institute for Housing Studies [IHS] at DePaul University. In this capacity, he analyzed housing market indicators maintained at IHS to advise community development organizations on policy and program development that addressed challenges in Chicago’s neighborhoods. Ryan holds a Master of Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a focus in economic development and a Bachelor of Urban Planning from the University of Cincinnati. He is a member of the American Planning Association.
Matt Williams is an Associate with a background in state and local government, municipal development initiatives, and public-private partnerships. Prior to joining SB Friedman, Matt worked at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Washtenaw County’s Office of Economic Development, where he managed a number of state and local initiatives promoting economic growth and development. These included administering a loan portfolio (with over $100 million in total assets) focusing on biomedical and engineering start-ups, assisting Michigan companies in securing federal defense contracts, and partnering with community-based organizations to redevelop economically challenged neighborhoods. Matt holds a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and a Bachelor of Art in History from Eastern Michigan University.
Brock has a background in economic development and planning research, with a focus on data analysis and GIS. While at SB Friedman, he has assisted in compiling and cleaning data to formulate the boundary, PIN list and taxpayer mailing list for a proposed 3,300-acre Transit TIF in Chicago as well as creating maps for the TIF plan. In his past work with the Nebraska Bureau of Business Research, he modeled the expected economic impact of a proposed library and cultural arts center. Brock graduated with Honors and Highest Distinction from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute.