Our Leaders

Just as we focus on the people thriving in our communities, we also focus on our people, our employees. After all, it is their diligence and attention to detail that drives our business drive day in and day out. At Crescent, we pride ourselves on hiring people whom we would qualify as masters – they drive their profession to be better every day, they “get” people, and they never give up.

Brian Leary

President, Commercial / Mixed Use

Brian Leary joined Crescent Communities as president of its commercial and mixed-use business unit in 2014. In this role, he directs the company's commercial and mixed-use developments across the country with an active investment and development portfolio in excess of 3 million square feet. Through Brian's 22 years of experience in real estate, he's overseen an excess of $3.5B in development.

Prior to joining Crescent, Brian held senior management positions with Jacoby Development, Inc., Atlanta Beltline, Inc., AIG Global Real Estate, Atlantic Station, LLC and Central Atlanta Progress. As the managing director of Jacoby Development, a national developer of corporate, mixed-use and retail projects, he launched ONE Daytona, a 4.5-million square foot joint venture with International Speedway Corp. Previously Brian served as president and CEO of Atlanta Beltline, Inc., - the organization executing the implementation of the BeltLine, one of the largest, most wide-ranging urban redevelopment projects in the United States. When complete, the $3B+ project will provide a network of public parks, multi-use trails, transit, public art and thousands of units of housing along a historic 22-mile railroad corridor circling Atlanta.

While vice president of AIG Global Real Estate, he oversaw the design and development of Atlantic Station, a 13.5-million square foot joint venture that, at the time, represented the largest urban brownfield redevelopment in the United States and currently includes approximately 1.5 million square feet of retail, 1.5 million square feet of LEED-certified Class-A office, 3,000 residential units and a 120-room hotel. In 1998, he successfully negotiated with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for Atlantic Station to become the first project of its kind in the United States. In addition, Brian's development experience spans the country with successful assignments in Hawaii, the Midwest and in Central Florida. His focus on urban development and sustainability included leading a national coalition to create a $2 billion alternative energy and energy efficiency tax-exempt financing program with the U.S. Treasury and EPA.

Prior to Atlantic Station, Brian worked for Atlanta's downtown development organization, Central Atlanta Progress (CAP). With CAP and COPA, Inc. (the non-profit development arm for the Centennial Olympic Park area) Brian helped implement the first tax-increment-financing (TIF) district in the State of Georgia.

Brian is a graduate of Georgia Tech's College of Architecture with an undergraduate degree in architecture with minor concentrations in land development and real estate, and in addition, holds a master's degree in City Planning from Georgia Tech. While focusing on transportation and land development in graduate school, he finished a redevelopment plan for the Atlantic Steel property that would provide the basis for Atlantic Station.

Over the years, Brian has spoken to groups across the United States on Smart Growth, real estate development and leadership. He has presented on Capitol Hill, the National Partners for Smart Growth, the Real Estate Roundtable, and previously served on AIG's & ICSC's Sustainability Committees. He has been published nationally and has taught at Georgia Tech where he currently serves on the College of Architecture's Executive Council.

Brian is a member of the Board of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, Charlotte's science museum, Discovery Place, the Charlotte Lab School and is a Vice Chair of the Urban Land Institute's Urban Development & Mixed Use Council. Prior to moving to Charlotte from Atlanta, Brian served on the Board of Trustees of Leadership Atlanta, the Governing Board of Atlanta Medical Center, on Emory University's Board of Visitors and the Woodruff Arts Center Roundtable.

With his wife Whitney, he chaired the Atlanta Police Foundation's Annual Gala and graduated in the inaugural class of the Institute for Georgia Environmental Leadership. He is also an alumni of the Atlanta Regional Leadership Institute, served on the Department of Homeland Security's Advisory Council's Academe, Policy & Research Committee, the US Mayor's Institute for City Design, and at the request of the Mayor of Atlanta, previously served as Chairman of the City's Public Art Advisory Committee. Brian also served on ULI Nashville's Development of Excellence Awards jury for 2016.

Brian, his wife and their two daughters reside in the City of Charlotte.

Meet the Commercial / Mixed Use Team

Lud Hodges

Senior Vice President

Since joining Crescent in 1997, Lud has overseen the development of more than 5.7M sf of Class A office space, 1M sf of industrial space and 250,000 sf of retail space. He currently oversees all of the commercial / mixed use development in all markets. A licensed real estate broker in NC and FL, as well as a licensed engineer in both NC and SC, Lud has an MBA from UNC-Chapel Hill and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Georgia Tech.

Ned Austin

Vice President, Leasing

Having been with Crescent since 2000, Ned directs the commercial /mixed use operations throughout the Carolinas, including the management, development and oversight of industrial, office, retail and commercial land. He graduated from NC State University with a bachelor’s degree in textile management.

Elizabeth McMillan

Director of Development

Elizabeth’s responsibilities include oversight of the full development process for the commercial / mixed use business, including land acquisition, design, entitlement, permitting, construction, leasing, land sales, budget preparation, and project sales throughout the Carolinas and Tennessee. She is an LEED Accredited Professional and has her real estate broker license in NC and SC. She received her BA in Journalism and Mass Communication from UNC-Chapel Hill.

Amy Bezanson

Director of Development

Amy is responsible for all portions of the development process, with a focus on design and construction. She is a registered architect (NCARB), a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and an LEED Accredited Professional in Building Design + Construction. Amy has a Master of Architecture from Clemson and a BS in Architecture with highest honors from Georgia Tech.

Dan Richardson

Director of Construction

Dan is responsible for preconstruction pricing efforts and construction management in assisting with development opportunities and commercial / mixed use pursuits. He received a BS in Civil Engineering from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, where he's also a member of the Johns Hopkins Engineering Alumni Leadership Committee.

Jennifer Sharabba

Director, Development

Jennifer oversees the sales and leasing of properties in the Orlando and Tampa area, specializing in the office sector of commercial real estate. She has had her real estate license in FL since 1998 and has been a licensed broker associate since 2005.

Sagar Rathie

Vice President of Development

Sagar joined Crescent in 2016 as began his role as the Director of Corporate Finance and Investor relations, providing direct support to the CEO and CFO in the execution of Crescent's multiyear strategic plan. Sagar recently transitioned onto the Commercial & Mixed Use team, serving as the Vice President of Development. He leads all aspects of Crescent’s commercial & mixed use development process and new investment growth throughout the Southeast. Sagar received his Master’s in Business Administration from UNC Kenan-Flagler, Masters of Engineering from Duke University and Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from UNC Chapel Hill.

Keith Ammons

Senior Project Manager

Keith joined Crescent in 2018 as a Senior Project Manager, overseeing commercial developments in all markets. Prior to joining the team, Keith worked as a Project Manager for Bank of America, and Project Estimator for Rodgers Builders. Keith earned his degree in Civil Engineering from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Ken Jonmaire

Senior Project Manager

Ken has a proven track record of successfully managing and delivering complex real estate developments throughout his career from entitlement through construction. His development experience includes flex/industrial, mixed use, recreational, office, and residential. Ken has provided leadership on a $1B public private partnership redevelopment, over 320,000 square feet of speculative industrial and design-build developments, over 600 town homes and 170 condominiums.

Preston Fogartie

Marketing Manager

Preston joined the Crescent team in early 2018 as Marketing Manager for all commercial & mixed use development projects. Her responsibilities include oversight of all internal and external communications, including web and digital communications, collateral pieces, social, and events. Preston received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.