Crain’s New York announced yesterday that Bruce Ratner will be stepping down as chief executive of Forest City Ratner. Current executive vice president MaryAnne Gilmartin will rise to take his place.
Perhaps to the dismay of some, this won’t be a real goodbye, though. He will continue in his role as chairman, and one anonymous source maintains that Ratner will “still be very much involved at Forest City.”
His departure comes after a very busy and (depending who you ask) successful year for Forest City Ratner, the development company which Ratner helped launch just over thirty years ago. 2012 saw the long-awaited opening of Barclays Center, “the jewel of his 16-acre Atlantic Yards project,” as well as, more recently, the groundbreaking on the first of the project’s residential buildings.
Of course, his role in Brooklyn development has made him the subject of some revile as well. Critics have questioned his commitment to community jobs and affordable housing, and blame his beast of a building for the destruction of their neighborhood.
Neither Forest City Ratner spokespeople nor Bruce have made statements on Bruce’s decision, but his departure has been somewhat anticipated. In 2006, he sold his 30% share of Forest City Ratner stock for $46.3 million, and, as the New York Times noted back in September, he’s had no new projects in the works since Atlantic Yards.
And what of the soon-to-be CEO? MaryAnne Gilmartin joined Forest City ranks in 1994 as assistant vice president for commercial development. She’s become an award-winning leader in the New York real estate scene, and was even named New York’s 35th most powerful woman by Crain’s in 2011. Hopefully she’s ready to take on the multitude of Ratner detractors.
Photo credit Craig Warga/New York Daily News