Reit Magazine - March/April 2021 - 17

JBG SMITH's Dawnita Wilson
was recently recognized by
Nareit for her work on diversity, equity,
and inclusion. What direction do you
want the company's DEI strategy to
take?
We're very focused on, as Dawnita likes
to say, walking the walk and really following through on what matters most. Our
workforce is majority minority already, but
we need to make more progress at the senior
ranks. We have been taking steps in the right
direction, but we have more work to do. Our
board is one third women, and we've been
public about wanting our board to be more
reflective of the workforce and having more
diversity.
Where you really measure this is when
we fast forward into the future. Will we find
ourselves working in an industry that is a
leader, not a laggard, when it comes to representation of the greatness of our workforce
throughout the ranks?

Q

Where do you see JBG SMITH
positioning itself in the next
three to five years?
The top two headlines of our story in the
years to come will be Amazon's growth
within and our repositioning of the National
Landing market. We will put it on the
map as one of the best new places in the
Washington Metro area and the country for
people looking for a place to live or work.
We do expect Amazon's growth to drive
tremendous demand for multifamily, office,
and retail in the area.
The playbook that we are formulating for
the 'smart city' initiative will be applicable
in other submarkets throughout the city. We
won't be the only ones doing it, but my hope
is that we will be successful in being one of
the first and that we will effectuate every
layer of that placemaking strategy and that
repositioning.
I also think investors will see us make
good on our plans to divest office assets and
redeploy that capital into more multifamily
and to really shift the mix of what we are
right now, which is majority office. Over
time, I do believe we will become at least
half, and very likely majority, multifamily
with heavy concentration in the path of
strongest growth in our market.

Credit: JBG SMITH

Q

West Half apartment balcony in the Ballpark District.

Has the recycling of assets
become more challenging in the
current climate?
It has, without question. Most of what we've
been looking to dispose of have been office
assets or in some cases, land assets, and
those are two categories that really saw very
little activity after the pandemic hit and
haven't come back yet.

Q

The market is heavily dependent on foreign
buyers and the one thing that has not gone
virtual is the final decision of a real estate
buyer to purchase an asset sight unseen. It just
doesn't happen. I suspect the capital markets
will continue to be slow at best, but we are
hoping for better conditions in the second
half of this year and we do intend to get back
to executing on that recycling strategy.

Nareit: Real estate working for you |

17



Reit Magazine - March/April 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Reit Magazine - March/April 2021

Contents
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Reit Magazine - March/April 2021 - Contents
Reit Magazine - March/April 2021 - 1
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