We have assembled a team of passionate, highly capable and experienced professionals to execute our strategy and to further augment our operating strengths.
Senior Vice President
Letitia Dean serves as Senior Vice President of Fund Accounting and Reporting, Controller for Sterling Investors. In her role, Ms. Dean is focused on internal and external fund and investor level reporting.
Ms. Dean has worked extensively in the credit, private equity and real estate fund sector with an internal and external fund focus on debt, private equity and real estate transactions. Prior to joining Sterling Investors, Ms. Dean served as Vice President at State Street Bank – Real Assets Fund Services. Prior to her role at State Street Bank, Ms. Dean spent 13+ years serving as Vice President – Finance at Blackstone. Prior to that, Ms. Dean commenced her career as an auditor at Deloitte and Touche, LLP for various private equity fund clients.
Ms. Dean graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from Fordham University.
Annmarie DeSimone is a Principal at Sterling Investors on the Asset Management team responsible for overseeing investments across all asset classes.
Prior to joining Sterling Investors, Mrs. DeSimone was a Principal in the Real Estate Group at Blackstone for 11 years. She spent the last five years on Portfolio Management overseeing key global initiatives including valuations, reporting and portfolio operations across Blackstone’s Real Estate funds. Prior to that, Mrs. DeSimone spent six years on Asset Management focusing on Blackstone’s hospitality, multifamily and senior living investments.
Mrs. DeSimone received a Master’s in Real Estate from New York University and a B.Sc. in Business Administration and Finance from Boston University.
Michael Fronte, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
Michael Fronte is the Chief Financial Officer at Sterling Investors and has responsibility for all financial activities, including fund accounting, reporting, tax and treasury.
Prior to joining Sterling Investors, Mr. Fronte was a Managing Director at State Street Bank where he was instrumental in overseeing the fund administration of over $45 billion in assets. Prior to State Street, Mr. Fronte was a Managing Director and a senior member of the Real Estate Finance team at Blackstone for over 18 years. He also held senior management roles at Arthur Anderson Real Estate and Hospitality Group.
Mr. Fronte received a B. Sc. in Accounting from Long Island University C.W. Post Campus’ School of Professional Accountancy and is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in the State of New York.
David Z. Hirsh
David Z. Hirsh is the Vice Chairman at Sterling Investors. David has more than 30 years of experience across all major real estate product types and US markets.
Over the course of his career, David has completed in excess of $30 billion in transactions and has developed a broad set of skills including: portfolio management, leasing, asset dispositions, lending and restructurings. In addition, David has a proven track record creating value by rebranding hotels and strategically repositioning office buildings.
David spent sixteen years (2002-2018) in Blackstone’s Real Estate Asset Management Group, retiring in 2018. During his tenure at Blackstone, his most significant responsibilities included day to day oversite and strategic management of Equity Office Properties (2009-2018), IndCor Industrial Properties (2013-2015), LXR Hotels and Resorts portfolio (2004-2010) and several investments in the retail and senior housing sectors.
Prior to joining Blackstone, David worked at Citigroup for 15 years including six years in real estate asset management, where he led the hotel group, and five years in corporate finance specializing in corporate real estate and project lending.
David received a BBA in Accounting from Pace University and an MS in Real Estate Development and Investment from New York University.
Bjorn Johnson, PhD, CFA
Bjorn Johnson is a Director at Sterling with a specific focus on Strategy and Research. Mr. Johnson has over a decade of experience in financial markets research and valuation.
His prior industry experience includes a role as Vice President, Quantitative Analyst at State Street Corporation and a Manager in the Financial Research team in the Investment Management department at Edelman Financial Engines. Mr. Johnson is a former professor of finance at DePaul University, where he taught courses in corporate finance and valuation in the MBA program, and private equity and venture capital in the Executive MBA program. Mr. Johnson started his career in the Real Estate team at The Blackstone Group in London, UK.
Mr. Johnson holds a Ph.D. in Financial Economics from Yale University, and an M.Sc. in Economics and Business with a Major in Finance from Stockholm School of Economics. Mr. Johnson is a CFA charterholder.
Martin Klaassen is a Principal at Sterling and is responsible for sourcing and executing real estate investments in the United States and Europe on behalf of the Sterling funds.
Prior to joining Sterling in 2021, Mr. Klaassen worked at Northwood Investors for eight years in New York and London where he was focused on real estate acquisitions and initiatives across property sectors in the United States and Europe.
Before joining Northwood, Mr. Klaassen worked in the Real Estate Investment Banking group at CIBC World Markets where he focused on corporate advisory assignments and capital markets transactions.
Mr. Klaassen graduated cum laude from Northwestern University with a B.A. in Economics and Political Science.
Khaled W. Kudsi
President and Chief Executive Officer
Khaled W. Kudsi, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sterling Investors, has been an active institutional real estate investor for over 20 years. Mr. Kudsi serves as Chairman of the Investment Committee and approves all of Sterling’s commitments.
Prior to founding Sterling Investors in 2020, Mr. Kudsi was at Northwood Investors. Mr. Kudsi joined Northwood Investors in 2010 and served as a Senior Managing Director from 2013 and then as Head of Acquisitions from 2017 until his departure in 2019. Mr. Kudsi was a voting member of the firm’s three-person Investment Committee and a Key Executive of certain Northwood Funds.
Prior to joining Northwood Investors, Mr. Kudsi was a Principal in the Real Estate team at The Blackstone Group for over nine years and was based out of London and New York.
Mr. Kudsi received a B.Sc. in Computer Science, with Honors, from King’s College of London in 2000.
David Rain is a Vice President at Sterling Investors and is responsible for executing and sourcing real estate investment opportunities across all asset classes.
Before joining Sterling in 2022, Mr. Rain spent six years at Crow Holdings Capital Partners where he led the self-storage group. Prior to joining Crow Holdings, Mr. Rain worked at Bracewell LLP as a real estate transactional attorney.
Mr. Rain received a J.D. and M.B.A, both with honors, from The University of Texas and a B.A. in History from Washington and Lee University. He currently serves as an Associate Council Member of the University of Texas Real Estate Finance & Investment Center.
Ben Tenzer is a Senior Associate at Sterling Investors and is responsible for executing and sourcing real estate investment opportunities across all asset classes.
Before joining Sterling in 2022, Mr. Tenzer spent three years in KKR’s Real Estate Private Equity group, focusing on transactions for their core and opportunistic vehicles across the Industrial, Multifamily, Office, and Life Science sectors. Prior to joining KKR, Mr. Tenzer worked at Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing (MSREI), responsible for acquisitions across all asset classes.
Mr. Tenzer graduated from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, magna cum laude, with a degree in Finance. Mr. Tenzer currently serves on the Associate Advisory Board of the Steers Center for Global Real Estate at Georgetown University.
Zoe Torres is a Director at Sterling with responsibility for leading Sterling’s Human Capital strategy. Ms. Torres partners with Senior Leadership at Sterling on long and short-term strategic objectives, maximizing organizational effectiveness with a focus on developing and executing talent management, diversity and inclusion, organizational design and cultural development initiatives.
Previously, Ms. Torres was Director of Human Capital at Brunswick Group. In this capacity, Ms. Torres had responsibility for all human capital related services. Prior to Brunswick she held AVP and Senior Generalist roles at Deutsche Zentral Bank and Weitz & Luxembourg.
Ms. Torres earned a M.Sc. in Industrial and Labor Relations from the Zicklin School of Business, and a B.A. in psychology from City College of New York. She also holds an Executive Coaching certificate from ICoach NY.