Board of Directors
Thomas J. Barrack, Jr.
Thomas J. Barrack, Jr. has served as the executive chairman of our board of directors since our formation in June 2009. He also serves as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Colony Capital, LLC ("Colony Capital") and as the chief executive officer of Colony Financial Manager, LLC, our external manager (the "Manager"). As the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Colony Capital, Mr. Barrack provides overall strategic and investment direction and leadership to Colony Capital.
Prior to founding Colony Capital, where Mr. Barrack has worked since its formation in 1991, Mr. Barrack was a principal with the Robert M. Bass Group, the principal investment vehicle of the Fort Worth, Texas investor Robert M. Bass. Prior to joining the Robert M. Bass Group, Mr. Barrack also served in the Reagan administration as Deputy Undersecretary of the Department of the Interior. Additionally, In 2010 French president Nicolas Sarkozy awarded him France's Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur.
Since June 2010, Mr. Barrack has served on the board of directors of First Republic Bank, a full service bank and wealth management firm. Since January 2006, Mr. Barrack has served on the public board of directors of Accor, S.A., a major global hotel group listed on Euronext Paris S.A., including as a member of Accor's Supervisory Board since May 2005 and as a member of its Compensation, Appointments & Corporate Governance Committees since May 2009. Mr. Barrack served on the public board of Challenger Financial Services Group Limited, a diversified financial services organization listed on the Australian Securities Exchange from November 2007 to October 2010. From August 1994 to September 2007, Mr. Barrack served on the board of Continental Airlines, Inc., one of the largest passenger airlines in the United States, including as a member of its Corporate Governance Committee, Executive Committee and HR Committee.
Mr. Barrack received a B.A. in 1969 from the University of Southern California. He attended law school at the University of San Diego and the University of Southern California, where he was an editor of the law review and received a J.D. from the University of San Diego in 1972.
Richard B. Saltzman
Chief Executive Officer, President & Director
Richard B. Saltzman has served as our Chief Executive Officer, president and as a director since our formation in June 2009. He is also the President of Colony Capital and the president of our Manager. Mr. Saltzman shares responsibility for Colony Capital's global operations. In particular, Mr. Saltzman guides the strategic planning, acquisition and asset management activities of Colony Capital and oversees new business initiatives. Prior to joining Colony Capital in 2003, Mr. Saltzman spent 24 years in the investment banking business primarily specializing in real estate-related businesses and investments. Most recently, he was a Managing Director and Vice Chairman of Merrill Lynch's investment banking division. As a member of the investment banking operating committee, he oversaw the firm's global real estate, hospitality and restaurant businesses. Previously, he also served as Chief Operating Officer of Investment Banking, had responsibility for Merrill Lynch's Global Leveraged Finance business, and was also responsible for various real estate-related principal investments including the Zell/Merrill Lynch series of funds which acquired more than $3.0 billion of commercial real estate assets and where Mr. Saltzman was a member of the investment committee.
Since July 2003, Mr. Saltzman has served on the board of directors of Kimco Realty Corporation, a publicly traded real estate investment trust, and as a member of Kimco's Compensation Committee. He is also a member of the Board of Governors of the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts ("NAREIT"), on the board of directors of the Real Estate Roundtable and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Urban Land Institute. In March 2013, Mr. Saltzman was named a member of NAREIT's Mortgage REIT Council and appointed as the Chair of the Council's Commercial Working Group. Previously, he was a Trustee and Treasurer of the Pension Real Estate Association, a Director of the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate, a Vice Chairman of the National Realty Committee and a past Chairman of the NRC Real Estate Capital Policy Advisory Committee.
Mr. Saltzman received his B.A. from Swarthmore College in 1977 and an M.S. in Industrial Administration from Carnegie Mellon University in 1979.
Ronald M. Sanders
Chief Legal Officer & Secretary
Ronald M. Sanders serves as our Chief Legal Officer and secretary. Mr. Sanders is also a Principal and the General Counsel of Colony Capital, and has served in such capacities since joining Colony Capital in November 2004. Mr. Sanders is responsible for the management of global legal affairs and generally provides legal and other support to the operations of Colony Capital.
Prior to joining Colony Capital in November 2004, Mr. Sanders was a Partner with the law firm of Clifford Chance US LLP, where he specialized in the representation of private equity funds and mergers and acquisitions.
Mr. Sanders received his B.S. from the State University of New York at Albany 1985, and his J.D. from the New York University School of Law in 1988.
Darren J. Tangen
Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer & Treasurer
Darren J. Tangen serves as our Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer and will be seconded exclusively to us pursuant to a secondment agreement with Colony Capital. He has been a Principal of Colony Capital since December 2007, where he is responsible for the identification, evaluation, consummation and management of new debt and equity investments in North America. Prior to becoming a Principal of Colony Capital, Mr. Tangen served as a Senior Vice President (December 2006-December 2007), Vice President (July 2004-December 2006) and Associate of Colony Capital (August 2002-July 2004).
Prior to joining Colony Capital in August 2002, Mr. Tangen was an Associate in the Investment Banking Division of Credit Suisse First Boston in Los Angeles. From 1993 to 1999, Mr. Tangen worked in the Investment Division of Colliers International in Vancouver, Canada specializing in the acquisition and disposition of major commercial properties including office and industrial buildings, shopping centers and development lands.
Mr. Tangen received his B. Comm. from McGill University in Montreal, Canada and his M.B.A. in Finance and Real Estate at The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania where he was recognized as a Palmer Scholar.
Kevin P. Traenkle
Chief Investment Officer
Kevin P. Traenkle serves as our Chief Investment Officer and as Chief Investment Officer of our Manager. Mr. Traenkle is also a Principal of Colony Capital where he is involved in many facets of the firm’s activities including: distressed debt initiatives, investment and divestment decisions, business development and global client relations.
Prior to becoming a Principal in January 2005, Mr. Traenkle served as a Vice President of Acquisitions. Before rejoining Colony Capital in 2002, Mr. Traenkle worked for a private equity investment firm, where he was responsible for real estate-related investment and management activities.
Previously, Mr. Traenkle was a Vice President at Colony Capital serving as a member of the acquisitions team and was responsible for the identification, evaluation, consummation, and management of investments. Prior to joining Colony Capital in 1993, Mr. Traenkle worked for an investment bank, First Albany Corporation, in its Municipal Finance department.
Mr. Traenkle received a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1992 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York.
David A. Palamé
Chief Compliance Officer
David A. Palamé serves as our Chief Compliance Officer. He has served as the Assistant General Counsel of Colony Capital since joining in April 2007. He has and will continue to be responsible for various global legal activities and generally provide legal and other support to Colony Capital.
Prior to joining Colony Capital, Mr. Palamé was an associate with the law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell LLP from September 2003, where he specialized in the formation of private equity funds, commercial real estate transactions and mergers and acquisitions. Beginning in August 2002, Mr. Palamé served as a law clerk to the Honorable William J. Rea, United States District Court for the Central District of California at Los Angeles.
Mr. Palamé received a B.A. from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1999 and a J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 2002, where he served on the board of officers of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review as a comments editor.
George G. C. Parker
George G. C. Parker has served as a director since our initial public offering in September 2009 and currently serves as chairman of our audit committee. Professor Parker has been a distinguished member of the finance faculty of Stanford University's Graduate School of Business since 1973 and is currently the Dean Witter Distinguished Professor of Finance (Emeritus). At Stanford, Professor Parker has held a series of senior positions, including Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Director of the M.B.A. Program, Director for Executive Education, and Director of the Stanford Sloan Program for Executives.
Professor Parker is independent chairman of the board of directors of iShares Exchange Traded Funds, an investment company; a member of the board of directors of Tejon Ranch Company, a publicly traded real estate development company, where he also serves as Chairman of its Audit Committee; Threshold Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a publicly traded biotechnology company; and First Republic Bank, a California banking company. From 1996 to 2009, Professor Parker served on the public board of Continental Airlines, Inc., including as a member of its Audit Committee.
Professor Parker holds a B.S. degree from Haverford College and an M.B.A. and Ph.D. degree from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
John A. Somers
John A. Somers has served as a director since our initial public offering in September 2009 and currently serves as chairman of our Compensation Committee. Mr. Somers has been a private investor since June 2006. From 1996 to June 2006, Mr. Somers was Head of Fixed Income and Real Estate for Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association and College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF), and served there as an Executive Vice President from 1996 to 2004. From 1981 to 1996, Mr. Somers served as Senior Vice President and Head of Commercial Mortgages and Real Estate for TIAA-CREF. Prior to joining TIAA-CREF, from 1972 to 1981, Mr. Somers held several positions in the Real Estate Investment Department, including Vice President, for Prudential Insurance Company of America.
Mr. Somers has been a member of the board of directors of Guardian Life Insurance Company of America since 1996, currently serves as a member of the audit & risk committee and human resources & governance committee and previously served as chairman of its audit committee and investment committee. Since July 2010, Mr. Somers has served as a member of the board of directors of The Community Preservation Corporation, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation focused on low and moderate income housing development in New York City, and currently serves as a member of its Strategic Capital Planning Committee.
Mr. Somers received his B.S. in Economics from Villanova University in 1966 and an M.B.A. in Finance from the University of Connecticut in 1972.
John L. Steffens
John L. Steffens has served as a director since our initial public offering in September 2009 and currently serves as chairman of our nominating and corporate governance committee. Mr. Steffens is the founder of Spring Mountain Capital, L.P.; founded in 2001, Spring Mountain Capital, L.P. specializes in providing advisory services and alternative investments for institutional and private investors. Prior to establishing Spring Mountain Capital, Mr. Steffens spent 38 years at Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., where he held numerous senior management positions, including President of Merrill Lynch Consumer Markets (which was later named the Private Client Group) from July 1985 until April 1997, and both Vice Chairman of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. (the parent company) and Chairman of its U.S. Private Client Group from April 1997 until July 2001.
Mr. Steffens served on the Board of Directors of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. from April 1986 until July 2001. He also served as a member of the Board of Directors of Merrill Lynch Ventures, LLC (a $1.8 billion private equity fund for key employees). Mr. Steffens currently serves on the Advisory Board of StarVest Partners, the Advisory Board of Wicks Communication & Media Partners, L.P., the Board of Directors of HealthPoint Capital, a global medical device company, and as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Cicero, Inc., a publicly traded provider of business integration software, since May 2007. Also, Mr. Steffens was appointed to and serves on the Dartmouth Medical School Board of Overseers on October 1, 2011. From June 2004 to February 2009, Mr. Steffens served on the public board of Aozora Bank, Ltd., a financial services institution in Japan. Mr. Steffens has served as Chairman of the Securities Industry Association, as a Trustee of the Committee for Economic Development, and is currently National Chairman Emeritus of the Alliance for Aging Research.
Mr. Steffens graduated from Dartmouth University in 1963 with a B.A. in Economics. He also attended the Advanced Management Program of the Harvard Business School in 1979.