Ballard Spahr Partners With Project Destined: Investing in the Next Generation of Real Estate Finance Leaders
As announced at its National Housing Symposium, Ballard Spahr has joined many of its real estate and corporate clients in partnering with Project Destined, a social impact vehicle that trains underrepresented urban youth and military veterans to be owners and stakeholders in the communities where they live, work, and play.
Through the Project Destined program, teams of students from traditionally underserved communities–supported by program alumni, graduate students, and mentors–work together to evaluate development opportunities, build investment memos, and compete in pitch competitions to present their ideas for investment and development.
“Project Destined creates a pipeline of diverse real estate and investment professionals and builds access in an innovative and approachable way,” said Kyle A. DeThomas, a Real Estate attorney who will serve as a Project Destined mentor. “It’s an honor to work alongside Project Destined in generating positive social and economic change in our communities, and we’re looking forward to using this opportunity to work with students from Morgan State University, the University of Maryland, Howard University, and George Mason University, among others.”
Across Ballard Spahr’s 15 U.S. offices, our lawyers and staff partner with dozens of community organizations engaged in enhancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, in the legal profession and in the industries we serve. The firm is committed to building communities through civic leadership and pro bono work, including our Racial Justice and Equality Initiative, as well as through fundraising campaigns for social justice organizations.
“Ballard Spahr is well-positioned to help equip the next generation of real estate leaders with the knowledge and experience they need to explore ideas for innovative community development,” firm Chair Mark Stewart said. “We are excited to work with these students, and I think we will learn a great deal from each other.”
Since its founding in 2016, Project Destined has served 2,500 participants in 25 cities. Seventy percent of its graduates have gone on to secure internships, full-time jobs, or certifications.
“Ballard Spahr is unique in that it is both a law firm and an organization with a proud heritage of work in the affordable housing field,” Project Destined founder Cedric Bobo said. “Partnerships like this help us provide more support to more students in more cities across the country, and our collaboration will make us both stronger.”
For media inquiries, please contact Will Ashenmacher at 612.371.5792.