Leadership Raleigh 37
Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch
Real Estate Developers Greg Hatem (Empire Properties), John Kane (Kane Realty Corporation), and Smedes York (York Properties) discussed development plans and trends. The three businessmen took our questions about Raleigh’s booming population and discussed how the city is a target for new and expanding businesses. Mr. Kane made an interesting point that, “Whether we land Amazon or Apple, now we’re on everybody’s radar.”
Next we headed to Industrious, a co-working office space also located in Charter Square. The floor is styled in a mid-century modern, industrial office space, made up of several glass wall offices. Industrious provides office rentals for start-ups and growing businesses. Fortunately for us, it was National Vodka Day and there were free Bloody Marys! Social House Vodka supplied the drinks. After our tour, we left Charter Square to head to the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts on South Street.
Following a tour of the theater from Jim Lavery, general manager for the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, we enjoyed a panel discussion. Chris Malarkey (Booking Agent, Lincoln Theater), Michele Weathers (Executive Director, Carolina Ballet), and Lauren Kennedy Brady (Producing Artistic Director, Theatre Raleigh) discussed the challenges they face in the Arts and how, as one Arts company improves, it forces the others to improve, too. Next was lunch at The Raleigh Times on Hargett Street.
After enjoying delicious food and a beautiful balcony, we walked over to Marbles Children’s Museum and heard from the Athletics Panel. Loren Gold (Executive Vice President, Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors’ Bureau), Curt Johnson (President and General Manager, North Carolina FC) and Gary Buete (Chief Executive Officer, North Carolina FC Youth) spoke to us about the possibility of a Major League Soccer team based in Raleigh. They also discussed building a multi-modal stadium in downtown Raleigh. Next we made our way to Raleigh Union Station on Hargett Street.
Add this to the list of things I did not know existed. What a beautiful station! Herbs and foliage grow from its “green” roof and the building is made from repurposed cranes and metal sheeting. There are five roundtrip trains daily, including three to Charlotte. After a station tour from David Eatman, transit administrator for the City of Raleigh, we ended the day with a walk to Brewery Bhavana.
Leadership Raleigh Class 35 greeted us with free drink tickets. Drinking spicy margaritas was the perfect way to end our first day with Leadership Raleigh. Next month, we are scheduled to learn about Raleigh Law Enforcement. They are planning police ride-alongs, so you might see us out and about again in a few weeks!