Employee Spotlight - Deborah Raybon
1. What is your Name, Office, and position at Cresa?
Deborah Raybon, Cresa Lease Administration – Dallas, Principal
2. How long have you worked at Cresa?
I have worked for Cresa 5+ years through an alliance agreement, but directly employed for 1.5 years.
3. Are there any projects or contributions to your local Cresa office, that you would like to share?
I facilitated the work in 2019 to open the new CLA office in Dallas and hired employees to work out of that office.
4. What organization(s) are you currently involved with?
My local church, Christ Mission Baptist Church, and I have volunteered at two non-profits, Agape House and Austin Street Center.
5. How did you become involved with this organization?
I have attended my church all my life and the non-profits through word of mouth and through Cresa.
6. Why is their mission important to you?
Because they are proving resources and an avenue for those in need to receive help.
7. What has your involvement with this organization taught you?
To respect each other regardless of one’s social economic standing.
8. How can other people get involved?
There is such a great need in our own communities today with the jobless rate being so high as well as the coronavirus pandemic, people can either tap into their local churches or google non-profits.
9. Other – if there is anything else you would like to share, please include your final comments here.
About 25 years ago when I first began working in Real Estate, I was told by the company I worked for at the time, which was Landlord focused, that they did not believe in having minorities sit on site at properties and hold a client facing position. However, I was referred by a good friend of mine to one of their property managers who was in desperate need of an administrative assistant to sit at the front desk and greet the tenants. Knowing that it was against the norm to hire a minority, especially an African American, the Property Manager decided to take a chance with me.
The Property Manager did, however, politely tell me that 1.) I could not wear pants on the property and 2.) the company did not typically let minorities work on-site with their tenants. Basically, the company did not believe the optics of having a minority greet their tenants in the management office would be positive reflection of the company. While I certainly took pause at her statement, I was not angry or worried about how I would be treated, but instead was motivated to change the narrative of how minorities are viewed.
After working hard and proving myself to the company, I was eventually promoted to Assistant Property Manager and then to Property Manager. I went on to manage 3rd party, investor companies such as Teachers Insurance’s properties. I then moved to other companies where I managed properties in the CBD of Dallas, managing two buildings with approximately 1 million sq. ft.
After years of working for the Landlord, I eventually moved to Lease Administration, where I have worked for close to 20 years. Today, I have the privilege of a leadership role within Cresa Lease Administration, where the collective offices, Dallas and Chicago, manage 80+ corporate clients, $750 million per year in rent spend and employees 40+ lease admin, projects and accounting professionals. While there is still work to be done as it relates to inclusion and embracing diversity, I applaud Cresa for their efforts towards moving the needle closer to equality for all.