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Raising Private Equity For Your Project

2pm - 2:45pm - Room LER 555

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Thomas Campbell - Moderator


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Thomas Campbell is a founder and principal of Thorobird Companies LLC, leading development, acquisitions and operational strategy. Thomas also serves on the Albany Budget and the New York City Budget Committees of the New York State Association for Affordable Housing. Prior to founding Thorobird, Thomas worked in Finance for Merrill Lynch managing a $300,000,000 portfolio of investments and later for Morgan Stanley as an institutional advisor to corporations.


Derrick Weatherspoon

Senior Portfolio Manager


Derrick Weatherspoon is a Senior Portfolio Manager for BlackRock’s Impact Opportunities (BIO) Fund. He joined BlackRock in 2021. Prior to joining BlackRock, Derrick served as a Partner and Managing Director at IMB Partners, a middle-market private equity firm focused on investments in the utility services and government agency services sectors. At IMB, he led the firm’s deal management function in which he was responsible for sourcing, financing and executing investment opportunities as well as monitoring portfolio companies. Prior to IMB, Derrick was a Vice President at The Carlyle Group within in its U.S. Buyout Fund. At Carlyle, Derrick sourced, executed and monitored large-scale leveraged buyout and growth equity investments in the consumer, media and retail sectors. Prior to Carlyle, Derrick worked at Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, a private equity firm focused on investing in growth-oriented companies in the healthcare and technology sectors. Derrick began his career at Lehman Brothers, where he was an Investment Banking Analyst. Derrick received a B.S. in Finance from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business and an MBA from Harvard Business School, where he was a Robert Toigo Fellow.  

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Dale Burnett 



Mr. Burnett is a seasoned real estate investment professional that has invested over $14 billion of equity in opportunistic and value-add real estate projects globally. His transaction experience includes acquisitions, restructuring and asset management in the U.S., Europe and Asia where he has executed direct investments and joint-ventures in all the major real estate asset classes. Today, Mr. Burnett is Managing Director, Investments for BIG Equity Investors LLC (“BIG Equity”), a minority-owned investment management platform that invests in middle market real estate on behalf of institutional LPs. At BIG Equity, Dale helps to lead the firm’s investment business including strategy formation, sourcing and acquisitions. He is a member of the firm’s investment and ESG committees. Prior to BIG Equity, he led all aspects of the real estate equity investment business for Assurant, a Fortune 500 firm. In this role, he oversaw real estate equity investments in both Assurant’s $13 billion asset management group and Assurant Investment Management, the Firm’s third-party investment management platform. At Assurant, Dale was a member of the Firm’s Real Estate Investment Committee and the CEO’s Global Diversity Council.

Before Assurant, Mr. Burnett was a senior investment principal in AIG’s Global Real Estate Investment practice. At AIG, he specialized in the execution of joint-venture investments globally and played a key role in the successful restructure and re-launch of AIG’s $25B real estate investment platform. He began his career in real estate providing merger and post acquisitions advisory services to the Blackstone Real Estate Group during the assemblage of their acclaimed LXR and Extended Stay real estate portfolios. Dale has also held consulting and investment positions with Ernst & Young and Merrill Lynch respectively. In addition to his professional activity, Mr. Burnett was previously a Governor appointed Board Director of the New York Business Development Corporation and is a current appointee to the New York State Real Estate Board. He is also chairman of the Praxis Housing Board, a Council member of the Urban Land Institute and a dedicated minister in his local church. Mr. Burnett received a bachelor’s degree in finance from Boston University and an MBA from Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business where he was both a Robert Toigo and Consortium Fellow. He resides in Westchester, New York with his wife and three daughters.


Lawrence Hammond

Senior VP/Director

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Lawrence Hammond is Senior Vice President, Director of ACCESS. In this capacity, Lawrence is working closely with CPC’s leadership team and Board of Directors to operationalize and manage a $20 million pool of funds which will focus on making investments in low-income communities and creating opportunities to empower minority real estate entrepreneurs across New York State and the region.

Mr. Hammond joined CPC as Vice President and Mortgage Officer in the New York City Originations Office in 2015, after more than 30 years with various financial institutions inclusive of Popular Community Bank, Bank of New York Mellon, and JP Morgan Chase Bank. At CPC, he has distinguished himself as an expert in affordable housing and multifamily finance, working with borrowers on some of their most challenging projects. As an ordained minister, Mr. Hammond has also focused on building relationships with, and advising faith-based organizations who are interested in developing housing as part of their mission to serve the community.

Mr. Hammond earned a Doctorate of Ministry and Masters of Divinity from New York Theological Seminary and a Bachelor of Science from Long Island University Brooklyn campus. He serves as chair of the Board of Trustees for New York Theological Seminary.


Andre Simon

Managing Director

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Andre is responsible for the building and execution of TruFund’s equity investment platform. He leads fund management, capital initiatives, relationship management, underwriting, and portfolio support. Andre is versed in debt, equity, and tax credit structures within the private and public sector focusing on real estate and small businesses.


He completed his formal credit training at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, earned a B.A. from Franklin & Marshall College and a M.A. in Public Management from Carnegie Mellon University at Heinz College.

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