Integrity, Creativity, & Excellence in Real Estate w. Jon Davis, CEO & Founder of The Davis Companies

- Online Zoom Conference

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Jon Davis
CEO & Founder at The Davis Companies

In 1976, at the age of 23, Jonathan G. Davis undertook his first major real estate project, an 83-unit renovation of a turn-of-the century brownstone city block. With this high quality development, Jon set the tone for a career focused on leading-edge projects.

During the early 1980’s, Davis was a leader in Boston’s historic redevelopment boom. His many noteworthy successes included the conversion of the Brimmer Street Garage into the nation’s first condominium for cars and the redevelopment of Newbury Street’s landmark Exeter Theater into retail and office space.

In the early 1990’s, Jon’s company was one of the first in New England to embark upon the acquisition of distressed debt and commercial properties in that post crash period and was once again one of the most active distressed asset investors on the East Coast in the 2009-2012 market correction.

In the past twenty-five years, the company has significantly broadened its geographic and product focus and has completed developments and acquisitions comprising over twenty three million square feet of space and 9,000 residential units, representing an investment of approximately $8 billion. Today these companies are owners, developers and managers of twelve million square feet of office, healthcare, hospitality, retail and industrial properties and 4,000 multi-family units in 12 states. Additionally, manage four co-mingled funds with equity and co-investment capital of $2.4 billion.

In 2000, Jon was chosen by Ernst and Young as New England Entrepreneur of the Year in the real estate and construction category. In 2003, Jon was honored by the Association of Fundraising Professionals with the “Leader in Philanthropy” award. In 2006, Jon’s company was named recipient of the Distinguished Real Estate Award by the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Association of Office and Industrial Properties (NAIOP). In 2014, the United Way of Massachusetts Bay awarded Jon its Norman Leventhal/Edwin Sidman Community Leadership Award. In 2015, The Boston Preservation Alliance awarded Jon its President’s Award for Excellence in Historic Preservation. In 2019 The Real Estate Finance Association of the Greater Boston Real Estate Board awarded him the Robert S. Swain Award for distinguished service to both the real estate industry and the Greater Boston community.

Jon has been deeply involved in the civic and philanthropic life of his community. A 1975 graduate of Brandeis University, he is a member of its Board of Trustees and former Vice Chair of its Board; a Director and Past Board Chair of The Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston; a Director of WBUR public radio; a Director of the Pension Real Estate Association Foundation: a Former Director of The Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston; and 2008 President/2009 Board Chair of the Massachusetts Chapter of National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP).

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David Drewes
Partner & Co-Chair of the Real Estate Department at Willkie Farr

David C. Drewes is a partner and Co-Chair of the Real Estate Department.
Mr. Drewes focuses on all types of real estate transactions, including
complex acquisitions, dispositions, financings, joint ventures, restructurings,
development transactions, REIT matters, ground and space leases, and
construction agreements. He represents a broad variety of clients, including
private developers, private equity and hedge funds, public real estate
companies, lenders, preferred equity investors and other real estate
investors in transactions involving all real estate asset classes, ranging from
hospitality to senior housing, office buildings to residential/multifamily
projects, and the acquisition, development and repositioning of retail assets.
Chambers USA (2021) ranks Mr. Drewes among the leading individuals
practicing in the area of Real Estate. In 2015, Mr. Drewes was named a
Law360 "MVP" in Real Estate. He was also named one of Law360's "Rising
Stars" in Real Estate in both 2015 and 2014. Mr. Drewes is also recognized
in the 2020 edition of The Legal 500 United States.

Mr. Drewes is admitted to the New York State Bar.

Mr. Drewes received a JD from Columbia University in 2001, where he was
a Stone Scholar and a notes editor of the Columbia Law Review, and a BA
(cum laude) in Political Science and History from Yale University in 1998.

 Represented a prominent life insurance company lender as acquisition
and construction lender on the $330 million Plaza District office tower
 Represented a Brookfield-sponsored private real estate fund in the $750
million acquisition of 34 senior living communities from HealthPeak
 Represented Hudson's Bay Company on the $850 million sale of the
Lord & Taylor Fifth Avenue building to WeWork Property Advisors.
(named "Private Equity Deal of the Year" at the 2018 IFLR Americas
 Represented Meadow Partners and Trammell Crow Company (TCC) in
their joint acquisition of an 80 percent condominium interest in the
Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) Building, located at 888
16th Street, NW in downtown Washington, DC.
 Represented Washington Prime Group in the formation of a joint
venture with O'Connor Mall Partners, L.P. which will own seven of
Washington Prime's open-air properties, valued at approximately $600
 Represented The Generation Companies in its $215 million
recapitalization and roll-up of four portfolios comprising 23 hotels,
consolidating them into one portfolio with its new joint venture partner, a
fund controlled by StepStone Real Estate Group.
 Represented B&L Management Company in connection with the $690
million sale of 24 rental apartment buildings located in Manhattan to a
joint venture led by Blackstone and Fairstead Capital.
 Represented WP Glimcher, a premier retail real estate investment trust
specializing in the ownership, management and development of
shopping centers, in a new 5-year, $500 million term loan.
 Represented Washington Prime Group Inc. in its $4.3 billion acquisition
of Glimcher Realty Trust, including advising WPG in Glimcher's $1.09
billion simultaneous sale of two malls--Jersey Gardens in Elizabeth,
New Jersey and University Park Village in Fort Worth, Texas--to Simon
Property Group.
 Assisted Sunrise Senior Living, Inc. in connection with real estate
aspects of its $1.9 billion acquisition by Health Care REIT, Inc., and
Sunrise's anticipated buyout of its joint venture partner and debt
restructuring with respect to an over £400 million portfolio of 17 senior
care facilities in the United Kingdom.
 Represented Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. in the $956 million sale of
its North American Industrial Fund III portfolio to Blackstone Group LP
and Prologis Inc.
 Represented hotel REIT DiamondRock Hospitality on various
acquisitions, dispositions and financings for single assets and portfolios,
including its $127.2 million acquisition of the fee simple condominium
interest in the Hilton Garden Inn/Times Square Central, $495 million
acquisition of four hotels from Blackstone Real Estate Partners, $200
million unsecured corporate credit facility, $143 million sale of the Hilton
Minneapolis Hotel and $65 million sale of the Hilton Garden Inn
Chelsea/New York City.
 Representing Faena Group and Access Industries in connection with
their development of the Faena District, a new Miami Beach
neighborhood intended to include a five-star luxury hotel, world-class
residences and cultural components.
 Represented Hudson's Bay Company in connection with Saks OFF
5TH's lease of 47,333 square feet in Manhattan's Tower57, which will
house the first Saks OFF 5TH in New York City.
 Represented a preeminent investment firm in a series of complex, multiparty transactions resulting in its acquisition of a portfolio of properties in
South Carolina, Ireland and St. Kitts.
 Represented a prominent real estate investment firm in its $170 million
preferred equity investment in a multi-asset REIT.
 Represented The American Home in a definitive agreement for the sale
of a portfolio of single-family homes to Silver Bay Realty Trust Corp. for
$263 million. The portfolio comprises approximately 2,460 single-family
homes located in the southeastern United States, and the transaction
was cited as one of the largest bulk purchases in the rental-home
 Advise Ventas, Inc., a major healthcare REIT, in connection with various
acquisition and financing matters, including its acquisition of Cogdell
Spencer Inc.
 Representing major private land development enterprise in connection
with restructurings of over $1.7 billion of debt with over 20 different
 Represented Ares Management, L.P. in the sale of its condominium unit
comprising approximately 375,000 square feet in the 1 million square
foot mixed use complex located at 1111 Marcus Avenue on Long Island,
New York to North Shore University Hospital.
 Represented Meadow Partners in a joint-venture acquisition and
development project with developer Slate Property Group. The joint
venture acquired the properties at One Flatbush, located on the corner
of Flatbush Avenue and Fulton Street in Brooklyn, New York, and will
develop them into an approximately 170,000 square foot mixed-use
project. Represented the joint venture partners in securing a $110
million loan to develop the project at One Flatbush.
 Represented Paramount Group in connection with its acquisition of
multiple Manhattan office buildings, including 60 Wall Street and 31
West 52nd Street, and in its acquisition of 50 Beale Street in San
 Represented Goldman Sachs in connection with its acquisition and
restructuring of a $180 million mortgage loan secured by the YOTEL
New York hotel, located just west of Times Square.
 Represented Trinity Church in connection with a development ground
lease with respect to a planned 300,000-plus square foot mixed-use
 Represented a closely held real estate investment firm in connection
with the recent recapitalization of 650 Madison Avenue – a midtown
Manhattan trophy mixed-use building.
 Advised on multiple mortgage, mezzanine and preferred equity
investments for Lehman Brothers with respect to a wide variety of asset
classes, including luxury condominiums, data centers and luxury golf course and residential developments.
 Negotiated and closed multiple mortgage and mezzanine financings and
joint venture restructurings for Mills and Apollo Real Estate.
 Negotiated leases for nearly 1,000,000 square feet in the aggregate for
Lehman Brothers, including 1301 Avenue of the Americas and 1271
Avenue of the Americas.
 Closed the acquisition, joint venture and financing arrangements for
multiple hospitality and residential assets for private developer Scout
Real Estate Capital.




Online Zoom Conference


Please join YJP for another installment of our virtual Mentorship with Real Estate Leaders series.

We are excited to welcome Jon Davis. This session will be an opportunity to connect with an intimate group of young rising stars in the industry, as we convene on October 14th for a candid conversation with Jon. Make sure to bring your questions, to connect with Jon and grow your network.

This session will included around 25 young professionals.

For inquiries on this session, upcoming real estate opportunities, or membership, please email:

We greatly appreciate your interest in attending this session. Please read the attendee guidelines below for more information on how to qualify for this session:

  • YJP Sessions are open to professionals with 1-20 years of experience. If you are interested in attending, please apply by clicking the "register" button. A member of our team will review your information and get back to you shortly.
  • If you have over 20 years of experience and do not qualify for this session, we will be happy to provide further information on our executive-level membership and involvement opportunities for which you do qualify.
  • Non-members of YJP are welcome to join one event to experience our group. After your first event we ask that you apply to become a member if you wish to continue being involved in our community.

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