The Goldie Initiative Holds Inaugural Impact Summit

New event honors 2024 graduates and bestows awards upon outstanding volunteers

Award winners with The Goldie Initiative Founder/Chair Goldie B. Wolfe Miller (second from left): Katrina Malone of Wells Fargo (left); Kirsten Hull of EQ Office (second from right) and Mark Rose of Avison Young (right)

The Goldie B. Wolfe Miller Women Leaders in Real Estate Initiative, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to prepare women to advance as leaders in commercial real estate by providing financial and professional support, held its inaugural Impact Summit at Chicago’s Willis Tower on Thursday. The focus of the event, attended by over 150 commercial real estate industry professionals both in person and via livestream, was to recognize volunteers, mentors, and donors for their contributions to improving the commercial real estate industry and to demonstrate the impact of the organization’s program on Goldie Scholars over the 2023-24 school year. Additionally, the event celebrated all in attendance, including 2024 graduates and award winners.

Impact Summit Award Winners honored the contributions during the 2023-24 school year, based on the four pillars of Goldie Initiative programming: Scholarship, Networking, Mentoring and Leadership. The Networker of the Year Award recognized Goldie Scholar Katrina Martin of Northwestern University, for her role as an individual who attends networking events often and consistently promotes organizational visibility. The Trailblazer Award was given to Mark Rose of Avison Young, an industry leader who advocates, endorses, and/or sponsors women in commercial real estate. The Mentorship Impact Award was given to Kirsten Ekdahl Hull of EQ Office, recognizing her longevity and commitment to mentoring with The Goldie Initiative. Kirsten consistently drives positive outcomes from Goldie Scholars and other mentees. The Corporate Champion Award was given to CIBC, with Karen Case accepting on behalf of the company. The award recognizes the ongoing, outstanding financial contributions to The Goldie Initiative and active participation in programming.

The speakers included Goldie B. Wolfe Miller, Founder/Chair of The Goldie Initiative; Maira Huizar, Goldie Scholar and 2024 graduate of UIC Law; Jessica Caffrey, Goldie Alumna and Executive Director of Cook County Land Bank Authority; Kelsey Cleland, Program Director of The Goldie Initiative; Megan Abraham, CEO of The Goldie Initiative; and Katie Kazas, Board Chair of The Goldie Initiative and Managing Director-Capital Markets at Longfellow Real Estate Partners. In addition to covering the impact of The Goldie Initiative on Goldie Scholars’ careers in commercial real estate, speakers also addressed upcoming plans for growth and expansion of the organization beyond Chicago and the Midwest.

In addition, numerous commercial real estate industry associations attended the event to provide an opportunity for stakeholders of The Goldie Initiative to pursue leadership opportunities. Indeed, participation in industry organizations is a key factor in building one’s leadership profile. Several significant donors were also recognized, such as presenting sponsors of the 8th annual Goldie Gala on September 19, 2024: The McShane Companies, Chicago Title Insurance Company, and the Jack and Goldie Wolfe Miller Fund.

The Impact Summit concluded with an informal informational session for students, regarding The Goldie Initiative’s application for the 2024-25 school year, which is open until June 2, 2024.

Learn more about The Goldie Initiative at