For over 26 years, I served as a Director and the Senior Vice President of Pacific International Equities, Inc., which, during my tenure, was Miami Beach’s largest, luxury, condominium, high-rise developer. My responsibilities included overseeing Pacific’s acquisitions, planning, design, development and marketing of the company’s condominium projects, comprising approximately 4,500 units whose market value exceeded $750,000,000. Some of these projects included mixed-use components among them notably, Sunset Harbour Marina, a 125-slip, state-of-the-art, full service marina and 500 residential condominiums in Miami Beach.
I was the senior development executive of Las Olas River House, a 42–story, 287-unit, $250,000,000 condominium development on the New River in downtown Ft. Lauderdale. My total condominium development experience spans 40 years and over 7,000 units with a market value exceeding $1,000,000,000. I was also responsible for Pacific’s numerous, commercial, industrial and residential assets in Canada, suburban Washington, D.C. and Atlanta, Georgia and I developed a 5300-acre recreational land subdivision, Alpine Forest Park, northeast of Los Angeles, California.
In 1997, I left Pacific and started my own firm, Howard Shapiro & Company, to engage in real estate development for my own account and to provide consultancy services to the real estate development industry. In 2014, I was certified by the Florida Supreme Court as a Circuit Court Mediator and Qualified Arbitrator. I have also provided my services as an expert witness in litigation involving real estate matters.
Because of my experience, expertise and significant contribution to the built environment, I was asked, in 1997 by the University of Miami School of Law to assist its LLM Program in Real Property Development, which led to my being appointed to its Adjunct Faculty as its Developer in Residence. Working with law students and faculty, I lecture and assist students and professors in the classroom setting, where I present the client’s point of view and bring to light the reality of the real estate development industry, all of which complements the theoretical, legal aspects learned by students through their law classes in our Program.
I attend many of the Program’s workshops and assist in organizing site visits and inviting special speakers to address the students. I work closely with students assisting them with their special project assignments. I am also an “ex-officio” member of the Program’s Strategic Planning Committee where I participate in the planning of the Program’s course content and special programs designed to enhance the students’ learning experience.
I hold a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Sir George Williams University in Montreal, Canada and an MBA from the University of Miami (1980). Born and raised in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada, I am fluent in French. Now an American citizen, I have resided in South Florida since 1972 when my real estate development career began.