Alumni Matters

We value our alumni, and each of you matter to the success of our program. We have dedicated this section of the Webster to highlight your accomplishments. Here are a few alums we have highlighted this month:

Gina Champion-Cain ’94 (MBA) has been responsible for the redevelopment and repositioning of nearly 10 million square feet of commercial space (retail, office and hospitality) as well as over 5,000 residential units. As president and CEO of American National Investments, Inc. (ANI), her responsibilities include providing strategic direction to ANI and overseeing all real estate services such as development and acquisition activities, commercial and residential leasing and asset management. In 2011, Champion-Cain developed a new lifestyle brand called LuvSurf; a San Diego-based real estate, hospitality and branded merchandise company. LuvSurf is a multi-faceted business, including a vacation rental business, The Patio Brand of Restaurants and an apparel brand that captures the “sand, sun and surf” lifestyle of southern California. As founder and CEO of LuvSurf, Champion-Cain oversees all aspects of the company, including property acquisitions, marketing, customer service and sales. In 2014, Champion-Cain developed a retail store concept called The Front Porch which will carry unique specialty items from The Patio Brand and from across the region, including gourmet sauces and jams, rich desserts, pastas, olive oils, balsamic vinegars, elegant candles and décor items. She also recently purchased shares in The Swell Café, a local coffee roasting company, and will be expanding the brand to include wholesaling organic coffee beans, teas and more.

Sean Mayer ’10 (MSRE) enhanced three generations of real estate DNA as the principal and founder of Legacy Real Estate Ventures, LLC, the investment arm for the Mayer Family Office. Since the commencement of the investment arm in 2009, the company has purchased and disposed of over $1.75 million of single-family residential assets. The homes purchased and sold have help pave the way for gentrification within these neighborhoods leading to an increased tax basis for the various cities and saving hundreds of families from foreclosure. Mayer’s company adopted a venture capital approach and his process of vertical integration led to the newest investment in a mobile application, HouseCall. The app synthesizes the link between the construction world and homeowners to create an “Uber-like” interface with a powerhouse team. Legacy Real Estate Ventures, LLC was recently nominated as a finalist for the Building Industry Association Icon Awards for the “Custom Home Builder/Remodeler of the Year” award. Mayer was a moderator at Opal Financial Group’s Annual Investment Trends Summit, was awarded the esteemed “Top 100 Family Office Elite Award” from Sato Consultants and was nominated in the International Top 100 Business Magazine as a top real estate developer.

If you are a USD alum working in the real estate industry, we would like to hear from you. Please email Diane Ice with recent and significant career-related achievements and initiatives. All submissions will be considered for inclusion in the "Alumni Matters" sections of The Pipeline and our Webster.