Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Thomas Scott is the founder and CEO of CA Ventures, an investment company focused on student housing, residential, retail and hospitality, office, and senior living real estate assets. Tom’s wealth of industry experience has helped CA expand into a multi-dimensional real estate company serving diverse aspects of property investment, development and management.
Tom has more than 25 years of direct commercial real estate experience in investment, development, finance, accounting, and asset management. As a veteran of the commercial real estate industry, he has held positions in nearly every sector of the business and has held executive-level roles with the industry’s top national, international, and publicly traded real estate firms, including Vornado Realty Trust, CBRE, Inc and U.S. Equities.
Tom is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accountancy and is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Illinois. As a member of the University of Illinois President’s Council, lifetime member of the University of Illinois Alumni Association, and The University of Illinois Foundation, he is committed to the pursuit and progress of higher education. Along with his wife, Julie, Tom advanced their passion for scholastic achievement and founded The Scott Family Foundation in 2010.
Tom is also committed to community endeavors. His support extends to a number of diverse organizations, including the YWCA, Greater Chicago Food Depository, and Chicago Training Center, which assists underserved Chicago youth to achieve their athletic and academic potential through competitive rowing.
In 2012, Tom received the Arthur A. Rubloff Humanitarian Award from the Anti-Defamation League, in recognition of his success in real estate as well as his generous commitment to improving the lives of others.
Chief Investment Officer
As Chief Investment Officer of CA Ventures, Nishant Bakaya leads CA Ventures investment management team to help manage the firm’s strategy across multiple asset classes, including student housing, senior housing, residential, and hospitality.
Prior to joining CA, Nishant was the Global Co-Head of Real Estate Private Capital for Evercore Partners. During his tenure, Bakaya advised CA Ventures on its $660 Million joint venture with QuadReal Property Group and GI Partners to acquire, develop and manage student housing properties at select universities throughout the United States. Over the course of his career, Bakaya has been involved in over $100 billion of real estate transactions across the senior housing, student housing, hospitality, multi-family and retail asset classes.
Nishant holds an MBA with honors from the University of Chicago and bachelor’s degree in economics from Franklin & Marshall College.
Chief Operating Officer
Michael Hales serves as Chief Operating Officer for CA Ventures. In this role Michael oversees the company’s infrastructure and operations with a focus on investing in people, processes and systems. He will work with the Executive Team and Vertical Presidents to define CA’s global strategy and vision, develop the roadmap to execute against that vision, and oversee the day-to-day operations required to meet CA’s goals.
Michael holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Illinois. Prior to CA Ventures, Michael was previously a Principal at Bain & Company where he advised clients on a variety of issues ranging from corporate strategy and performance improvement to mergers and acquisitions.
Chief Development Officer
As Chief Development Officer of CA Ventures, Sean is responsible for leading all development and construction activities across CA’s Student Living, Senior Housing and Multifamily verticals.
Sean plays an active role in determining CA’s risk management, pre-development, entitlement and construction implementation strategies – bringing this comprehensive perspective as a member of CA Ventures Investment Committee.
Sean’s leadership role includes bridging the acquisitions, development and construction teams to support interdepartmental collaboration and efficiency in a continual effort to integrate consistent implementation protocol and delivery quality to all CA developments.
During Sean’s 20+ year development career, he has been involved with over 10MM square feet of industrial, 2MM square feet of office, 500K square feet of retail and over 2,500 units of multifamily and student housing development.
Immediately prior to joining CA, Sean was the Vice President and General Manager of Opus Development Company, where he managed development and construction initiatives across all sectors – including multifamily, industrial, office, retail as well as led Opus’ national student housing development platform.
Sean holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering degree from Purdue University. In addition, Sean serves on Purdue University’s Presidential Council, Purdue University’s Civil Engineering Advisory Board and is a board member for Catholic Charities of Chicago.
Global Head of Investments and Principal
John Diedrich serves as the Global Head of Investments and Principal for CA Ventures. He is responsible for the oversight of all acquisitions and development, globally, for CA’s wide range of commercial real estate asset classes. John provides strategic leadership from pipeline formation to capital raise and project closing. As a member of CA Ventures’ Investment Committee, Mr. Diedrich supports the development and implementation of the firm’s investment strategy. John also oversees CAV Finance – a division dedicated to alternative investment products and EB5 business.
Since joining the firm in 2008, John has actively supported CA’s growth from a ~$400 million portfolio into the $10 billion portfolio it is today. He has overseen $3.3 billion worth of student and multifamily dispositions and has played a crucial role in the expansion and diversification of CA’s portfolio, domestically and internationally.
John graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Science in Finance
President - CA Student Living
As President of CA Student Living, JJ is responsible for creating the vision, product and roadmap to execute the firm’s strategic plans. JJ drives platform growth by incubating and executing a robust pipeline of new investment and development opportunities. He is responsible for portfolio growth of net asset values and achieves this by optimizing property financials through hands-on revenue management and detailed expense control.
An architect by background but equipped with an MBA in real estate finance, JJ has overseen nearly $5.0B in new development for CA since 2007, including about 100 projects and nearly 20 million square feet of buildings, 40,000 beds of student housing, over 500k square feet of retail and over 250 hotel keys and the creation of all new business units.
JJ also serves as Principal for CA Ventures and provides development and construction oversight for CA Senior Living, CA Residential, CA Retail & Hospitality and CA International business units as well as serves on the CA Ventures Investment Committee. Since joining CA in 2007, JJ has helped manage the explosive company and portfolio growth while building the corporate support functions that enhance the scalability of CA’s platforms and further integrate consistent systems across business departments.
JJ holds a BS in Architecture and a MBA in Real Estate and Finance from University of Illinois. He was selected as a 40 under 40 by Crain’s Chicago Business and also RE Forum nationally.
President – CA Residential
Bob Flannery serves as the President of CA Residential with a focus on CA’s national multifamily development platform, including strategic planning, acquisitions, capital markets, joint ventures and asset management activities. Bob is also active in decisions regarding the holding, selling, repositioning and refinancing of CA assets.
Bob has over 25 years of experience in commercial real estate and executive leadership, most recently as Chief Operating Officer at JRG Capital Partners. He has worked for many of the industry’s top firms, including Prudential Insurance, JP Morgan Chase and Sam Zell’s Equity Office. He has been involved in transactions totaling over $5 billion and has managed real estate portfolios consisting of office, retail industrial and multifamily in major markets throughout the United States.
Bob holds a BS in Finance from Northern Illinois University and an MBA in International Business from Wayne State University.
President – CA Senior Living
Ben Burke, President of Senior Living, oversees the implementation and execution of the senior living investment process. In this capacity, Ben focuses on project sourcing by identifying underserved markets/submarkets, site acquisition, contract negotiation, proforma and budget creation, operator selection and oversight, and strategic vision of the platform to maximize investor return.
Prior to joining CA, Ben was the Vice President of Development & Investor Relations at Spectrum Retirement Communities. While at Spectrum, he was directly involved in the development of 20 communities (~2,300 units) across nine states. Product types included independent living, assisted living, and memory care. Through these developments, Spectrum’s portfolio grew from ~1,700 units to ~4,000 units.
Prior to joining Spectrum, Ben held positions with Archstone-Smith and CWCapital. Ben graduated from the University of Denver with a BSBA in Real Estate.
Business Head - Europe
Carlo heads the CA Ventures’ European platform and he is responsible for all development activity, acquisitions and operations in the region. Prior to that he had set-up and served as CEO for Actis’ London development platform in West Africa where he developed $500m of commercial class A assets. Between 2002 and 2010, he spent eight years as Managing Director with Hines Europe. His time with Hines included responsibilities for the development of large mix-use scheme Porta Nuova in Milan, the pan-European Hines European Development Fund and the Hines CalPERS Spain Fund.
Carlo brings to twenty-five years of pan-European and International experience in the real estate industry. He is a registered architect, he graduated from the Politecnico di Torino (Italy) School of Architecture and received an MBA from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin.
Executive VP – Capital Markets
Katie Kazas serves as EVP of Capital Markets for CA Ventures. Katie acts as the single point of contact for all of CA’s lending relationships from sourcing term sheets to negotiating loan documents for closings as well as explaining market strategy and reporting performance of assets. In her 5 year tenure at CA, Katie has executed over $7 billion of total loan volume.
She joined CA from PrivateBank (CIBC) and where, as Managing Director, she managed a $300 million loan portfolio and closed over $1 billion in loans during her 7 year tenure. Her responsibilities included developing new business through existing and new clients, maintaining customer relationships, analyzing and monitoring the financial performance of clients, and evaluating needs and requests for financing. In addition, Katie oversaw more construction loans than any other lending group since 2007 for CA.
Prior to joining PrivateBank, Katie was an Assistant Vice President in LaSalle Bank’s Commercial Real Estate Department, responsible for a $500 million real estate loan portfolio. Katie also completed LaSalle Bank’s Commercial Banking Training Program.
Katie received a Bachelors of Science in Finance from the University of Illinois – College of Business.
Executive VP -
Sean Zasche serves as Executive VP of Investor Relations of CA Student Living. In this role, Sean is responsible for overseeing the firm’s investment and disposition activities and structuring and managing joint venture relationships with institutional investors.
Prior to joining CA, Sean was a Vice President at M3 Capital Partners, a global real estate investment and advisory firm based in Chicago. Over nearly 10 years with M3, Sean advised public and private operating companies in the execution of over $13 billion of institutional private equity transactions. He was also responsible for sourcing and identifying entity level investment opportunities on behalf of M3’s subsidiary, Evergreen Investment Advisors, which managed $3.4 billion of institutional equity. Prior to M3, Sean worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers as an Associate in the real estate assurance group.
Sean received a Bachelor of Science in Business (with distinction) from Indiana University where he majored in Finance and Accounting.
Sean is an active member of the Urban Development/Mixed-Use Council of the Urban Land Institute and of the National Multi Housing Council.
Chief Financial Officer
As Chief Financial Officer, Robert focuses on driving the long-term strategic plan for each vertical, identifying opportunities for improvement to enhance investor returns, and delivering best-in-class financial reporting.
Prior to joining CA in 2017, Robert spent 13 years in public accounting at Deloitte Tax, LLP working on real estate clients’ transactions that included but not limited to IPOs, acquisitions, dispositions, and tax compliance. Robert also spent 2 years at a publicly-traded REIT with its IPO and tax and legal entity restructuring. Robert joined CA as the VP of Tax and was promoted to CFO – International during 2018.
Robert Beesley is a licensed CPA that received his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Master of Science in Accounting from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Business Head –
As Principal of CA International, Tony focuses on international investment and development opportunities. In real estate for over 25 years, Tony has spent 15 years growing operating companies and working with large-scale real estate projects in international markets. His real estate experience includes commercial management and leasing, property and facility management, retail and mixed‐use properties, student housing, receiverships, start‐ups and business unit sales.
Previously, he served as Chief Operating Officer at U.S. Equities Realty, a Chicago based Real Estate company also in Latin America.
Tony received his Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Illinois. He has served on several boards, including: The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, Chicago Real Estate Network, and US Urban Realty. He has also served as a member of Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA), Urban Land Institute (ULI), International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), and International Facility Management Association (IFMA).
Executive VP -
As Executive Vice President of CA Public Private Partnerships, Peter delivers the strength and resources from CA Ventures’ diverse, cross-sector portfolio to the public sector. Under Peter’s leadership, the CA Public Private Partnerships team partners with educational institutions, governmental agencies, and research parks in the development, finance, operations, and asset management of complex, off-template, mixed-use projects.
Peter joined CA Ventures from Washington, D.C.- based program management firm Brailsford & Dunlavey Inc., where he most recently served as Vice President of Public-Private Partnerships. During his nearly 12 years at the company, Peter was instrumental in
growing the firm’s national practice by establishing new lines of business and serving as a development adviser and program manager on more than 100 projects at more than 70 institutions. In that capacity, Peter led the planning, design, financing, construction and operation of developments valued at nearly $2.5 billion, including large-scale public-private partnerships with a mix of uses.
Peter has extensive experience helping universities optimize real estate solutions across a range of asset types, including student housing, faculty and staff housing, hospitality, retail, office, recreation, student unions, entertainment venues, and life science facilities. Peter’s experience with the development of multiple asset types has led to bundled, mixed-use solutions that often include complex multi-site or multi-phased development and that incorporate coordination and approval from multiple public stakeholders.
A recognized leader in the public-private partnership market, Peter has been a regular contributor and subject matter expert for the P3 industry, serving as a presenter, author, moderator, and panelist for organizations such as NACUBO, ACUHO, SCUP, ACUI,
NACAS, NASPA, P3C, Academic Impressions, and Student Housing Business, among others.
Peter has also been the recipient of several awards, including being named a “20 Under 40” recipient by Engineering News Record and a “40 Under 40” recipient by Building Design + Construction. Peter is also a regular judge for the Building Design + Construction Team Building Awards, the Student Housing Business Student Housing Innovator Awards, and the P3 Bulletin P3 Awards.
Peter holds a B.S. in Business Administration from the Kenan Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Executive VP -
James E. McGill is the Executive Vice President of Industrial for CA Ventures. He played a large role in CA Industrial’s inception in June 2018.
Prior to joining CA Ventures, Jim was Managing Director, Central Region Capital Deployment for Prologis, Inc. and was responsible for all Capital Deployment activities within the Central Region. Jim was responsible for the completion of $1.05B of development projects including21Build-to-Suit projects totaling 12.9M square feet. In addition, his team acquired over $700M of core and value add properties.
Prior to Prologis, Jim joined AMB in 2004 as Senior Vice President, Development, and established the Midwest and Pacific Northwest development team. During this time, his team constructed over 4M square feet of industrial product and deployed over $475M of capital in Chicago, Dallas, Seattle and the Central Valley. Previously, Jim spent eight years at McShane Company, where he held the position of Executive Vice President, Development.His responsibilities included developing and managing more than 2.5M square feet of industrial properties with a market value in excess of $110M and more than 1M square feet of office properties with a value in excess of$150M.
Jim is a member of the Association of Industrial Real Estate Brokers (AIRE), the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors (SIOR) and the National Association of Industrial & Office Properties (NAIOP). He holds a bachelor’s degree in finance and accounting from Iowa State University and a Master of Business Administration degree in Finance from the University of Iowa.
Executive VP – Development
Matt Booma serves as Executive Vice President of CA Senior Living and CA Residential, overseeing current and future senior developments. Matt focuses on all aspects of development including site feasibility, financial feasibility, site acquisition, building programming, entitlement, due diligence, contract negotiation, design oversight, technology implementation, construction management, budget oversight and civic coordination.
A keen eye for detail, Matt brings over a decade of experience as an architect to each CA development. Matt completed a variety of projects both domestically and internationally with Perkins + Will, working on higher education, residential, health care, hospitality, retail and office project types.
Matt holds a Masters of Architecture and Bachelors of Science in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is a licensed architect and a LEED accredited professional.
Chief Executive Officer -
CA Management Services
Steve serves as Chief Executive Officer of the CA Management Services company.In this role, he is responsible for driving the performance and growth of the company’s Student and Multifamily housing portfolios both domestically and internationally, while also implementing best practices and innovation strategies that will help to differentiate CA Management Services in the marketplace.
Prior to joining CA Ventures, Steve was a Senior Managing Director at Greystar where he was responsible for overseeing real estate operations and leading the expansion of the company’s footprint in key Midwest markets. In addition, he oversaw Greystar’s national construction and maintenance operations. Steve joined Greystar in 2017 from the Laramar Group, where, as Chief Operating Officer, he was responsible for overseeing all facets of property operations for the company as well as participating in both the executive committee and investment committee. Steve has been active in the multifamily industry since 1988.
Steve holds a Bachelor of Science degree in economics from the University of Iowa and a CPM® designation from the Institute of Real Estate Management.
Chief Operating Officer -
CA Management Services
Beth Pinder serves as Chief Operating Officer of CA Management Services. In this role Beth oversees leasing and operations for student, multifamily and international portfolios. She assists in guiding objectives for new development from initial planning to delivery to ensure all aspects of the project meet operational criteria. In addition she provides operational and leasing oversight to the operating portfolios.
Beth’s vision is to aid clients in the development and management of real estate in multiple sectors that challenge status quo and reinvent the experiences of our residents and how they enjoy where they call home. Beth guides objectives by monitoring and evaluating market trends in multi-family and student housing and by doing so, keeps CA Management Services a progressive industry leader. Beth also focuses on ensuring the company’s working environment is one of encouragement, success and accountability, with a healthy level of risk-taking
Beth Pinder has 25 years in Real Estate and over a decade of property management experience with a background in sales and marketing, revenue management, new development, turnover processes, stabilization, and on-site operations. Prior to joining CA Beth served over 42,000 beds in over 45 markets with Education Realty Trust.