USAA names new CEO

Just two years after joining the real estate subsidiary of the Texas-based financial services company, Len O’Donnell has been promoted to its top post.

USAA Real Estate Company has promoted president and chief operating officer Len O’Donnell to chief executive. He replaces Pat Duncan, who will retire from the company’s day-to-day activities on May 1. Duncan will remain on the company’s board, as well as the boards of various related subsidiaries and affiliates.

“Pat’s record, especially successfully leading RealCo during the recent economic downturn, is outstanding,” says Joe Robles, USAA president and CEO, in a statement. “Thanks to Pat’s leadership, USAA Real Estate Company has grown to be a major industrial developer that is highly respected, and Len has proven himself well-qualified to build on that tradition.”

As president and chief operating officer, O’Donnell oversees all of the San Antonio-based company’s operations, including acquisitions, global investing, capital markets and portfolio management. He also manages USAA’s co-investment value-added funds, including Admiral Capital Real Estate Fund and Crimson Real Estate Fund.

USAA Real Estate is the largest single investor in the latter fund, a $50 million real estate opportunistic vehicle that was launched in 2009 and is sponsored by Crimson Capital, a Houston-based real estate investment firm. Prior to joining USAA Real Estate two years ago, O’Donnell had served as president and chief executive at Crimson Capital, and also was principal and chief investment officer for Crimson Real Estate Fund. 

Recent investments on behalf of the fund include the acquisition of eight acres of land in Houston to build a new headquarters for TGS-Nopec Geophysical Company; and the purchase of a multifamily development site in New York.

Separately, USAA Real Estate hired Bahram Motamedian as managing director of portfolio management, overseeing the USAA Eagle Real Estate Fund, an open-ended fund investing in all major property types across the US, and directing separate accounts.  He previously worked for 17 years at Houston-based Hines, including a decade in London as managing director for Hines Europe. 

USAA Real Estate, which provides co-investment, acquisitions, build-to-suit and development services on behalf of corporate and institutional investors, manages about $12 billion in assets. Its parent company, USAA, is a financial services company serving military families since 1922.