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Hawaii Business Magazine’s 20 for the Next 20: People to Watch 2012

20 emerging leaders in local businesses, nonprofits, government, education and law

(page 17 of 21)

Photo: David Croxford


Senior managing director, CBRE Hawaii

Ask kimberly lord about her work style and she has a precise answer: “The best approach is to listen carefully. As a result, I can make sound decisions that are aligned with client needs and corporate goals and objectives.”

She does that remarkably well, say her colleagues and clients at CBRE, Hawaii’s largest commercial real estate firm.

Joseph Haas, Lord’s predecessor as senior managing director, calls Kim “a dynamic and visionary leader and a tireless worker.” Then, he adds, “She’s more than all that.”

CBRE was sold in 2006, Haas explains, adding, “I told [the buyers] the best thing they’re buying is Kim Lord. ... She is an absolute expert on retail.”

Haas recalls an impromptu meeting with Lord in January 2002 on the Big Island, soon after she joined the company. Among a few goals they agreed on was to grow CBRE’s retail portfolio. Since then, the company’s Hawaii retail business has grown from zero to 4 million square feet in rentable retail space, or 8 percent of the company’s total. That’s big, he says, adding, “The reason is Kim.”

Bill Mills has known Lord for about 10 years and they have worked together on various projects, including The Shops at Wailea, Guam Premier Outlets and Waikiki Galleria.

“She’s fair and an excellent communicator,” says Mills, chairman of The Mills Group, a privately held, Hawaii-based real estate development and investment company.

“Good communication skills and well-written reports ... dealing with issues as they come up” – that’s what projects require and those are the skills Lord has, Mills says.

Lord commutes to Honolulu and wherever else her job requires from her home in Kapaa, Kauai. “I have been extremely privileged to work for amazing companies that have allowed me to commute for 18 years,” she says.

Lord inspires those around her and she says she is inspired by others. “People inspire me, all kinds of people. People who are not afraid to affect change.”


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