Lydia Tan

SVP, Development, Western Region

Bentall Kennedy

San Francisco Director

Real estate veteran Lydia Tan has joined Bentall Kennedy as senior vice president for development in the Western United States, based out of San Francisco.

Tan will help drive the North America-wide real estate investment firm's expanding development program — both on its own and with partners. Much of the focus will be on the Bay Area, though Tan will also be looking for opportunities in Southern California as well.

Bentall Kennedy already has investment and portfolio management teams in San Francisco and a development team in Seattle, and Tan will expand its development team with the addition of her own group in San Francisco.

Bentall Kennedy is one of North America's largest real estate investment and services firms, managing over $32 billion on behalf of more than 500 pension fund and other institutional clients worldwide, according to its web site.

"While operating in the U.S. for over three decades, they have increased their focus on U.S. markets in a big way in the past three years and have been very active across the entire nation," said Tan. "With significant equity being committed this year, they've already got a robust investment platform going."

Tan said she was drawn to the position because the company is looking for long-term investments and because of that outlook is attracted to "great locations and high-quality projects."

Tan was most recently executive vice president for Related California, where she oversaw projects that included the rebuild of public housing in the Sunnydale neighborhood of San Francisco, Lion Creek Crossings in East Oakland and 1601 Mariposa in San Francisco's Potrero Hill neighborhood.

Prior to joining Related, Tan spent 18 years with Bridge Housing, a nonprofit developer, where she started as project manager and rose to executive vice president, as well as serving briefly as chief operating officer and interim CEO.

Tan said her time at Bridge and Related prepared her well for her new position, not just because she learned how to build an A-list team of real estate professionals — a task she'll be charged with again in her new role.

"The other common thread among all of them is that they are all in urban markets and all pretty complicated and require a high level of creativity," she said.