Our Team

“Every ‘individual contributor’ at Westport has the support, engagement and partnership of our entire team and firm.
Being a member of the Westport team raises the level of everyone’s game to an even higher professional standard.”

–Greg Geiger
Principal & Portfolio Manager

The Westport team possesses a blend of hands-on real estate experience, sophisticated capital markets expertise, fundamental analytic rigor and long-established but constantly expanding networks of relationships/partnerships across the real estate and financial communities. As a result of the longevity and cohesiveness of our Management Team, we have developed a unique working environment for an institutional investment firm — maintaining an entrepreneurial culture that emphasizes and incentivizes creativity and new ideas, while simultaneously respecting and practicing discipline, conservatism and integrity as core values.


Investment Professionals

Managing Principal
Principal
Principal
Principal
Principal
Principal
Managing Director
Senior Vice President
Senior Vice President
Vice President
Vice President
Director, Westport Capital Partners (UK) LLP
Analyst
Analyst
Analyst

Russel S. Bernard

Managing Principal

Prior to founding Westport Capital Partners LLC in 2005, Mr. Bernard was a Principal at Oaktree and the Portfolio Manager for Oaktree’s real estate funds.  He was responsible for the management of a series of closed-end real estate funds with over $2 billion in total committed capital.  Before joining Oaktree in 1995, Mr. Bernard was a Managing Director at TCW and Portfolio Manager of the TCW Special Credits Distressed Mortgage Fund.  Prior to that, he was a partner at Win Properties, Inc., a national real estate investment company for eight years.  Before joining Win Properties, Mr. Bernard was with Time Equities, Inc., a New York real estate company for three years.  He began his career as a Staff Accountant at Price Waterhouse in New York.  Mr. Bernard has been on several corporate, university and charity boards. Mr. Bernard holds a B.S. in Business Management and Marketing from Cornell University.

 

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Sean Armstrong

Principal

Prior to joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Armstrong was a Managing Director at Oaktree Capital Management and one of the real estate group’s senior professionals. His responsibilities included the acquisition and management of numerous property and debt investments, and he participated in several complex asset-level and company-level debt restructurings. Mr. Armstrong also spearheaded Oaktree’s real estate investments in Japan and Europe. Prior to joining Oaktree in 1995, Mr. Armstrong was a Vice President in the TCW Special Credits real estate group. Before joining the real estate group, Mr. Armstrong worked for two years as a credit analyst in TCW’s high yield bond group. During that time, he developed very strong credit analysis skills, which were employed in the analysis of many investment opportunities in the TCW and Oaktree real estate funds. Mr. Armstrong was formerly a director of Lodgian, Inc., a Delaware corporation listed on the American Stock Exchange. Mr. Armstrong graduated with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering magna cum laude from the University of Southern California, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He went on to earn an M.B.A. in Finance magna cum laude, also from the University of Southern California. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst.

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Peter Aronson

Principal

Before joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Aronson was a Managing Director at Oaktree Capital Management’s Japanese and German affiliates. Mr. Aronson joined Oaktree in 1998 and helped lead Oaktree’s real estate efforts in Japan and Germany. Mr. Aronson also helped open Oaktree’s Tokyo office in 1998, where he worked until 2004 when he moved to Oaktree’s Frankfurt office. In both locations, Mr. Aronson was responsible for leading the sourcing, underwriting, acquisition, management and disposition of both distressed debt and property investments. He has extensive experience dealing with multiple cultures, legal regimes and foreign business practices. Prior to joining Oaktree, Mr. Aronson was an associate for five years at the law firm of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP, where his practice focused on general real estate transactions. Mr. Aronson received a B.A. degree magna cum laude from The American University and a J.D. cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center. He is a member of the State Bar of California.

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Howard Fife

Principal

Prior to joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Fife was with the institutional high yield and distressed debt department at Jefferies & Co. — where he worked with some of the largest hedge funds, providing trading and investment ideas. From 1994 to 2000, he worked at Lazard, Freres & Co. in their distressed debt sales and trading group, finishing as a Director and Sales Manager. In 2002, Mr. Fife was part of the team that successfully launched the Lazard Debt Recovery Fund, a vehicle that focused on investments in distressed corporate debt. From 1985 to 1994, he worked as an institutional bond salesman for Prudential Securities and DLJ, focusing on distressed and corporate debt, respectively. At Westport, Mr. Fife continues to draw on Wall Street contacts and the broader investment community to generate investment ideas. Mr. Fife holds an M.B.A. from the Stern School of Finance at New York University and a B.A. from Brown University.

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W. Gregory Geiger

Principal

Before joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Geiger was a Managing Director at Oaktree Capital Management and one of the real estate group’s senior professionals. He was principally responsible for making property investments, including several large development and entitlement projects that required complex negotiations with private and governmental agencies to achieve successful outcomes. He also has worked on numerous debt restructurings that have required resolving bankruptcy and other litigation issues. Mr. Geiger joined Oaktree in 1995 after serving as a Vice President in the TCW Special Credits real estate group. Prior to joining TCW, Mr. Geiger spent two years with the national real estate consulting and brokerage firm of Julien J. Studley, Inc. and six years with Langdon Rieder Corporation, a Los Angeles-based consulting firm, where he represented corporate clients in the acquisition of office and industrial facilities. Mr. Geiger holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University and an M.B.A. in Real Estate Finance from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA. Mr. Geiger is a licensed Professional Engineer and an instrument rated pilot.

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Jordan Socaransky

Principal

Prior to joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Socaransky spent four years as an associate in the real estate group at Oaktree. His experience includes the acquisition, management and disposition of both property and debt investments. Prior to Oaktree, Mr. Socaransky was an Analyst in Salomon Smith Barney’s Global Real Estate and Lodging Investment Banking Group for two years, specializing in mergers, acquisitions and capital raising. Mr. Socaransky holds an Honors Business Administration Degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario, Canada.

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Eric Clapp

Managing Director

Prior to joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Clapp spent seven years working in investment banking and real estate finance in New York, Los Angeles and Sydney, Australia. In investment banking, Mr. Clapp focused on the energy and power industries and mergers and acquisitions for Salomon Smith Barney and Bank of America Securities. Mr. Clapp graduated with a B.S. in Commerce with a concentration in Finance from the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce. He went on to earn an M.B.A. and Master of Real Estate Development (M.R.E.D.) from the University of Southern California.

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Chad Goodman

Senior Vice President

Prior to joining Westport in 2008, Mr. Goodman was an Associate Director in the Mortgage Sales Department at Bear Stearns, providing trading and investment ideas on mortgage and asset-backed products to a diverse account base that included hedge funds, money managers, insurance companies and proprietary trading desks. Other experience at Bear Stearns included positions in the Financial Analytics and Structured Transactions group providing analytic support and modeling RMBS/ABS securitizations, and the Internal Audit Department specializing in assessing the risks and controls of the Firm’s trading applications and other information technology. Prior to Bear Stearns, Mr. Goodman worked in the Technology Risk Consulting group at Arthur Andersen LLP. Mr. Goodman earned a B.S. in Computer Science from Binghamton University.

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Noam Sheps

Senior Vice President

Prior to joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Sheps was an Analyst at Racebrook Capital, LLC, a Warburg Pincus portfolio company focused on distressed real estate and non-performing real estate loans. At Racebrook, he was responsible for investment analysis, asset management and business development functions. Prior to Racebrook, Mr. Sheps was a Senior Analyst at Shattuck Hammond Partners LLC, a healthcare investment bank. Mr. Sheps earned a B.S. in Finance and B.A. in Economics, with honors, from Rutgers University.

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Allison Chester

Vice President

Prior to joining Westport in 2010, Ms. Chester was a Senior Associate at Reynolds Capital Group, where her responsibilities included underwriting real estate investments. Prior to Reynolds Capital, Ms. Chester was an analyst in Morgan Stanley’s real estate merchant banking group and an analyst in the natural resources group at Goldman, Sachs & Co. Ms. Chester holds a B.S. in Finance and International Business cum laude from the Leonard N. Stern School of Business at New York University.

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Stephen Woodard

Vice President

Prior to joining Westport in 2011, Mr. Woodard was a Vice President in the Commercial Real Estate Department at CIT Group, Inc., where he guided acquisitions, joint-venture investments, and dispositions. Prior to CIT, Mr. Woodard was an Acquisitions Associate at Lexington Realty Trust.  Mr. Woodard holds a B.A. in Economics from Union College and an M.P.S. in Real Estate Finance and Investment from Cornell University.

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Kevin McTavish

Director, Westport Capital Partners (UK) LLP

Prior to joining Westport Capital Partners (UK) LLP in 2016, Mr. McTavish spent twelve years as the Managing Partner of Summit Capital, LLC, where he acquired and managed distressed and value-added real estate assets. Prior to joining Summit, Mr. McTavish was a Principal and the Chief Operating Officer of Colony Capital, LLC. Prior to Colony, Mr. McTavish was an Acquisitions and Portfolio Manager at Brazos Asset Management, which was later renamed Lone Star Opportunity Fund. Mr. McTavish also served in the United States Navy for seven years. Mr. McTavish holds a B.S. from the United States Naval Academy and an M.B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania – Wharton School of Business.

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Justin Reindel

Analyst

Mr. Reindel joined Westport in 2015 after graduating from Amherst College with a B.A. in Economics.

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Alvin Zhu

Analyst

Prior to joining Westport in 2015, Mr. Zhu was a Development Manager for Omicron Canada, where he oversaw the acquisition, development and management of residential mixed-use condominium properties. Mr. Zhu holds a Masters in Real Estate Development from the University of Southern California and a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of British Columbia.

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Mathieu Durand

Analyst

Mr. Durand joined Westport in 2016 after graduating from Claremont McKenna College with a Masters in Finance.  He also has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Waseda University.

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Reggie Kronstadt

Analyst

Mr. Kronstadt joined Westport in 2016 after graduating from Emory University with a Bachelor of Business Administration with concentrations in Finance and Real Estate.

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Investor Relations

Investor Relations
Investor Relations

Hy Adelman

Investor Relations

Mr. Adelman has over 19 years of experience in the marketing and development of hospitality, resort, agricultural, golf, and ranch properties.  Prior to joining Westport, Mr. Adelman was the Project Director of Kuilima Resort Co. where he oversaw the redevelopment and renovation of Turtle Bay Resort.  Before joining Kuilima Resort Co. Mr. Adelman spent 12 years in marketing for Xerox Corporation.  Mr. Adelman graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Maine.

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Erin Kerr

Investor Relations

Ms. Kerr joined Westport in 2016 after spending four years at Tishman Speyer, where she was a Senior Director working on equity capital raising campaigns for funds and direct investment joint ventures. Prior to Tishman Speyer, Ms. Kerr was a Director at Eurohypo AG. Ms. Kerr has also worked at The Bank of New York and the Citigroup Private Bank. Ms. Kerr holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Rochester.

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Legal and Compliance

Principal and General Counsel
Vice President, Legal
Asst. Vice President, Compliance & Legal Officer

Marc Porosoff, Esq.

Principal and General Counsel

Before joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Porosoff was a Senior Vice President, Legal in the real estate group at Oaktree Capital Management LLC. At Oaktree, Mr. Porosoff was primarily responsible for legal aspects of the due diligence, acquisition, management, financing and disposition of the real estate group’s domestic and international property and debt investments. Prior to joining Oaktree in 1996, Mr. Porosoff was an associate at the law firm of Debevoise & Plimpton for five years, specializing in real estate and corporate matters. He holds a B.A. in Economics from Wesleyan University and a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School. Mr. Porosoff is admitted to the New York State Bar and is registered as Authorized House Counsel in Connecticut.

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Marian V. Curtis, Esq.

Vice President, Legal

Before joining Westport in 2011, Ms. Curtis was an associate at the law firm of Goodwin Procter, LLP for over four and a half years, where she represented domestic and foreign investors, fund sponsors, institutional investment advisors and investment banks in a variety of real estate transactions.  Prior to Goodwin Procter, Ms. Curtis was an associate at the law firm of Herrick Feinstein, LLP for two years.  Ms. Curtis holds a B.A. in Sociology magna cum laude from Bowdoin College and a J.D. cum laude from Brooklyn Law School.  Ms. Curtis is admitted to the New York State Bar.

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Sophie Melniker, Esq.

Asst. Vice President, Compliance & Legal Officer

Before joining Westport in 2012, Ms. Melniker was an associate at the law firm of Dewey & LeBoeuf, LLP for two and a half years, where she represented fund sponsors, investment advisers and institutional investors in a variety of real estate funds and private equity funds.  Ms. Melniker holds a B.A. in Economics from Yale University and a J.D. magna cum laude from the University of Miami School of Law.  Ms. Melniker is admitted to the New York State Bar.

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Accounting and Corporate Functions

Principal and Chief Administrative Officer
Principal
Senior Vice President, Fund Controller
Vice President, Fund Controller
Vice President, Fund Controller
Assistant Vice President
Property Accountant
Investment Accountant
Accounts Payable Specialist
Technology Specialist

Steven Russell

Principal and Chief Administrative Officer

Prior to joining Westport in 2005, Mr. Russell spent seven years as the Global Chief Information Officer for Christie’s International where he had responsibility for all aspects of information technology across Christie’s operations in 35 countries. Mr. Russell was responsible for planning and executing an IT strategy in support of maintaining Christie’s prominence as the world’s largest and most prestigious auction house. Prior to joining Christie’s, Mr. Russell was the Vice President of Information Services with the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) where he was responsible for information technology with particular emphasis on executing a strategy in support of a corporate re-engineering effort. Prior to ASCAP, Mr. Russell was with Bankers Trust Company, managing the design, development, and maintenance of a variety of systems which provided cash management services to the bank’s corporate customers. Mr. Russell received a B.S. in Computing and Information Science and an M.S. in Information Science, both from Lehigh University.

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Bruce Nuzie

Principal

Prior to joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Nuzie was a Senior Vice President in the real estate group at Oaktree Capital Management, where he was principally responsible for overseeing the group’s property accounting and administration efforts. Before joining Oaktree in 1995, Mr. Nuzie was with Win Properties, Inc. for nine years, where he was responsible for accounting and reporting with respect to a national real estate portfolio. Before joining Win Properties, Mr. Nuzie was a Senior Manager in the audit department of Ernst and Young in New York for seven years. Mr. Nuzie holds a B.A. in Accounting, cum laude, from the City University of New York at Queens College. He is a Certified Public Accountant.

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Sang Kim

Senior Vice President, Fund Controller

Before joining Westport in 2006, Mr. Kim was a Supervising Senior in the accounting firm of Rothstein, Kass & Company, P.C., where he led the external audit engagements for a number of domestic and offshore hedge funds. Prior to joining Rothstein, Kass in 2002, Mr. Kim worked as a Senior Investment Accountant at Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, L.P., a Los Angeles based private equity fund manager, for three and a half years. Mr. Kim holds a B.A. in Economics from UCLA. He is a Certified Public Accountant.

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Jennifer Albero

Vice President, Fund Controller

Prior to joining Westport in 2013, Ms. Albero held prior positions as Controller with Meadow Partners and Latus Partners (currently known as 40 North Properties), where she led the design and implementation of accounting policies and procedures, accounting systems and investor reporting systems.  Prior to Latus Partners, Ms. Albero held Controller positions at Stockbridge Real Estate Funds (formerly a division of UBS) and Starwood Capital Group, where she was responsible for finance, control and investor reporting. Ms. Albero holds a B.S. in Accounting from Virginia Tech.

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Veronica Pollard

Vice President, Fund Controller

Before joining Westport in 2008, Ms. Pollard worked as an auditor at Deloitte & Touche LLP. Ms. Pollard holds a B.S. in Accounting from Loyola Marymount University.

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Michael Musante

Assistant Vice President

Before joining Westport in 2010, Mr. Musante worked as a real estate fund accountant at Lazard Alternative Investments LLC. Mr. Musante holds a B.S. in Accounting from Fordham University.

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Kinga Czwartosz

Property Accountant

Prior to joining Westport in 2012, Ms. Czwartosz was a Property Accountant with Urstadt Biddle Properties.  Ms. Czwartosz holds a Bachelor of General Studies degree from the University of Connecticut. She is a Certified Public Accountant.

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Joy Bondoc

Investment Accountant

Prior to joining Westport in 2016, Ms. Bondoc was a Staff Auditor with Armanino LLP.  Ms. Bondoc holds a Masters of Accounting and a B.S. in Accounting, both from University of the Pacific.

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Lizette Cervantes

Accounts Payable Specialist

Prior to joining Westport in 2016, Ms. Cervantes managed various treasury functions for The Trayner Group, Ltd. Ms. Cervantes holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from John Jay College.

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Harry Ramnath

Technology Specialist

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Administration

Office Manager
Administrative Specialist
Administrative Assistant
Administrative Assistant

Peggy Ficano

Office Manager

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Trish Murphy

Administrative Specialist

Before joining Westport in 2006, Mrs. Murphy worked for Oaktree as an Administrative Assistant.  Mrs. Murphy holds a B.A. degree in Political Science from California State University, Fullerton.

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Christine Romero

Administrative Assistant

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Noreen Keegan

Administrative Assistant

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