Gary Sakwa is the co-founder and managing partner of Grand/Sakwa. Gary has over 35 years of experience in the residential and commercial real estate industry. Over the duration of his career, Gary has developed over 10,000 residential lots and through joint ventures has constructed over 3,000 homes with some of Metropolitan Detroit’s most prestigious Builders. In addition to Gary’s vast residential and mixed-use experience, he has developed and/or acquired in excess of five million square feet of commercial property. Gary is very involved in numerous philanthropic activities on a local and national level and is a principal in numerous real estate and land development activities throughout the United States.
Stephen Grand (1943-2021)
Stephen Grand was the co-founder of Grand/Sakwa Properties. Before he embarked on his real estate development career, Stephen was president and owner of Deco-Grand, a large manufacturer of precision components and assemblies for diesel engines and automotive industries which he owned and operated for 20 years. Stephen was active in numerous philanthropic activities throughout the United States.
Development and Leasing
William Eisenberg, CPM has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of commercial and residential real estate. Since joining Grand/Sakwa in December 2000, William has participated in the development of over five million square feet of retail, residential and mixed-use developments. Prior to joining Grand/Sakwa, William was the Vice-Chairman of The Farbman Group. William is an IREM Certified Property Manager, a Licensed Builder and a Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker in the State of Michigan. His professional affiliations include the National and Michigan Associations of Builders, The Southeastern Michigan Builders Association, International Council of Shopping Centers, Detroit Area Commercial Board of Realtors (DACBOR), International Association of Corporate Real Estate Executives (NACORE) and Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA).
Financing and Acquisitions
Jason Miller joined Grand/Sakwa in October 2011. His duties include evaluating and underwriting real estate acquisition and development opportunities and debt and equity sourcing and placement for new acquisitions and the refinance of existing portfolio assets. Prior to joining Grand/Sakwa, Jason served as Vice-President of Pomeroy Investment Corporation, a private real estate investment firm. Jason began his career in 2001 at Duff & Phelps LLC, an Investment Banking firm in Chicago. Jason is a Full Member of the Urban Land Institute, Member of the Board of Directors of the Furniture Bank of Southeastern Michigan, and a Regional Board Member of the Anti-Defamation League. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan, from which he received a BBA in 2001 and an MBA in 2006.
Hedley Williams joined Grand/Sakwa in 2001 and has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of commercial real estate including financing, leasing, and management. Hedley has operated a multi-state portfolio of over five million square feet and has placed in excess of $700 milion in debt financing. He has also been involved in all aspects of budgeting, forecasts and transactional activities. Prior to joining Grand/Sakwa, Hedley was President of The Farbman Group. He also has an extensive banking background including previous experience at the Bank of England and Michigan National Bank. Hedley hold a BSc in Economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science where he also held the CS McTaggart Scholarship for academic excellence.
Rick Ellis previously worked at JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., and its legacy banks for 32 years. Rick had numerous Commercial Banking positions over his tenure. His most recent position was as Managing Director, Southeast Michigan, within JPMorgan Chase’s Commercial Bank. Rick also carried a Series 79 License, as he was active in Debt and Equity Capital Raising, as well as Mergers and Acquisitions. Rick spent a great portion of his career acting as a Trusted Advisor for his clients and is a member of the Board of Directors of Rockford Carving Company LLC. Rick has a BBA in Economics from the University of Michigan (1984) and an MBA in Finance from Indiana University (1986).
Nick Donofrio is responsible for residential development and land acquisitions at Grand/Sakwa and managing the Company’s joint ventures with builders. Nick has over 30 years experience in land acquisition and development work throughout the East Coast, Mid Atlantic and Midwest United States.
Alan Abrahams, CPA
Alan Abrahams is a Certified Public Accountant and graduated with a BBA from the University of Michigan. Alan joined Grand/Sakwa in April 2013 and maintains responsibility for monthly financial reporting of the Grand/Sakwa Management portfolio of properties as well as for overall budgeting, cash management, lease administration, and technology systems. Alan previously spent 17 years in property management as Director of Finance for Woodbury Communities. Alan is a member of the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants.
Mike Blitz joined the Grand Sakwa team in April of 2018. Mike’s history includes Director of Engineering and Land Development at Edward Rose & Sons, President of ASI Life Cycle & Project Manager of ASI Paving, Land Development Field Manager at Robertson Brothers Homes and Construction/Project Manager of Atwell LLC. Mike graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1981 from Michigan State University.