passionate magazine
Karen Simon

Karen Simon

President and Managing Partner at Emerson’s Commercial Real Estate.
“Navigating Real Estate with Wisdom, Dedication, and Technology”

 A journey that reads like a story of resilience, shaped by a dedication to craft, a thirst for knowledge, and an unyielding adherence to core values, always moves us beyond expression. Karen Simon, the President and Managing Partner at Emersons Commercial Real Estate, is one such person. She is an educator turned industry titan, an advocate for women’s empowerment, and a steward of teamwork and technology in the ever-evolving landscape of industrial real estate.

Guiding Emerson Commercial Real Estate to New Heights

At the helm, Karen Simon, the symbol of leadership, exemplifies the virtues of staying informed and ahead of industry developments through continuous reading and research. But more importantly, she emphasizes the sanctity of one’s core values, standing even in the face of pressure. Her leadership thrives on open communication and the wisdom to seek input from her peers, recognizing that the mantle of decision-making should not rest solely on one’s shoulders. Her primary charge is to steer the ship of business, providing the lifeline for its sustenance and the gateway for others to flourish.

As a former educator, Karen finds joy in mentoring budding talents in the real estate realm, guiding them on a path of growth and learning. In her eyes, a new team member’s dedication, proactivity, and eagerness for perpetual improvement are virtues beyond measure. Intelligence and a solid education also earn their due reverence. Amidst her dedication to her work, she cherishes the simple pleasures, finding solace in the company of her bichon at the end of the day.

Through unwavering dedication and astute leadership, Emersons Commercial Real Estate, now operating through 1045, has transformed into a national juggernaut, overseeing a staggering portfolio of over 2,900 properties spanning a vast expanse of 80 million square feet of commercial real estate nationwide. The constituent companies under Emerson’s umbrella continue to operate with their distinct identities, yet the infusion of superior management has undeniably ignited the fires of their growth.

A domain marked by Karen’s focus on the leasing and sales of commercial properties seamlessly integrates with the parent company, which deftly handles property management opportunities. Emersons Commercial Real Estate is all about the art of optimizing value and resources through the dedicated efforts of its proficient team. Operating on a national scale, the company offers an array of services encompassing property management, accounting, leasing, and consulting, all meticulously tailored to meet the unique needs of its clients. What sets this team apart is their genuine sincerity toward delivering industry-leading solutions.

Balancing Work and Life in the Changing Landscape of Industrial Real Estate

Karen actively promotes a strong work ethic among her team, all the while nurturing the essential balance between professional commitments and the embrace of familial responsibilities and recognizing the significance of work-life equilibrium. For her, the gentlemen at Emersons offered not just a career but an invaluable opportunity to be an equal partner within the organization. They bestowed upon her the autonomy and responsibility of decision-making, all while fostering a long-term vision over short-term financial gains. This offer of ownership and participation in the company marked a significant turning point for Karen, a testament to her boldness in seizing opportunities.

The landscape of industrial real estate has undergone massive shifts over the past three decades, with women progressively making their presence felt, although the majority of positions still rest in the hands of men. Karen’s own career journey reflects this transformation, as her purview expanded to encompass office, retail, sales, leasing, and development. For her, success isn’t measured merely by her accomplishments but by her commitment to treating others with dignity and respect. Her relentless self-challenge has positioned her as a leader within the industry. Acknowledging the tides of change, Karen gracefully shares that the younger generation in the workforce wields a higher level of technological prowess compared to her own. She reflects on the shifts in technology from the era of triplicate typewriters to the digital age, underscoring this evolution by mentioning their 33rd car telephone, a bulky apparatus, replacing it with the sleek, compact cell phones of today.

Setting the Standard for Competence and Commitment in Real Estate

Exemplifying her dedication and preparedness in her role within the real estate industry, Karen understands that clients value competence above all else, and she strives to meet this expectation with commitment. Despite encountering some initial doubts from her male colleagues, her persistence and competence have earned her a respected position in the field.

While Karen juggles multiple responsibilities, such as firm growth and employee management, her primary focus remains the efficient operation of the company. Her role encompasses overseeing both the company’s development and its human resources, ensuring that it functions seamlessly. Her ability to balance these responsibilities reflects not only her organizational prowess but also her deep understanding of how interconnected these aspects are for the success of any business.

What sets Karen apart is her rich blend of experience, education, and a remarkable willingness to go the extra mile. She possesses the rare ability to admit when she doesn’t have all the answers, yet she never shies away from the pursuit of knowledge. In her own words, “I’m not afraid to say, ‘I don’t know,’ but I’m willing to find out.” This admirable trait makes her a valuable asset to both her clients and colleagues.

Her relentless pursuit of knowledge not only keeps her skills sharp in a dynamic industry but also sets a remarkable example for those around her. Karen’s attitude embodies the idea that continuous learning and adaptability are essential for professional growth. This unwavering commitment to self-improvement not only serves her clients’ needs more effectively but also inspires others in the industry to embrace lifelong learning as a cornerstone of success.

Empowering Women and Fostering Teamwork in Industrial Real Estate

Beyond her professional achievements, Karen stands as a symbol of empowerment for women in the industrial real estate sector. As one of the few women in this field, she defied convention and gathered attention. Her success shattered stereotypes, demonstrating that women possess the capability and expertise to excel in traditionally male-dominated roles. She continues to work diligently, ensuring that doors remain open for aspiring women in the real estate industry, paving the way for future generations to follow her path.

Known for her commitment to fostering teamwork and collaboration, Karen embodies a spirit of accessibility and support. She makes it a priority to be readily available, placing the needs of others above her own and demonstrating a genuine dedication to nurturing the growth and success of her colleagues. Her willingness to engage in collaborative efforts and provide guidance to those seeking assistance underscores her commitment to teamwork.

It is possible that her five-year tenure as an educator at a community college has shaped this profound sense of devotion. Karen’s innate teaching spirit shines through in her approach, where she willingly imparts knowledge and offers assistance to those who seek it. Her affinity for collaboration and her innate appreciation for the power of teamwork are evident in her actions and demeanor. These qualities speak to her genuine enthusiasm for working collectively towards shared goals and fostering an environment of cooperation that benefits all involved.

Embracing Technology as a Complementary Tool in Real Estate

In an era of increasing digitization, Karen Simon gracefully incorporates technology into her professional practices. She acknowledges the significance of utilizing digital tools to streamline processes, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a comprehensive record of deals and transactions. Furthermore, she highlights the value of feeding essential client details into the system, recognizing technology as a supportive tool and a reliable database.

However, amid the digital landscape, Karen remains steadfast in her belief that the foundations of hard work and diligence hold greater importance. Her perspective tells us that while technology and databases can certainly enhance efficiency, they can never serve as substitutes for the dedication and efforts of a committed workforce. In her balanced view, the synergy between technology and human endeavor creates a harmonious and effective approach to achieving professional success.

This harmonious approach not only ensures that businesses remain active and adaptable in a rapidly evolving technological landscape but also reinforces the essential human element in building trust, fostering relationships, and making critical decisions. Karen’s commitment to combining the best of both worlds serves as a guiding principle, reminding us that success in the digital age is not about abandoning tradition but about skillfully integrating it with the innovations of today.

Karen Simon’s Wisdom: Education, Dedication, and Gratitude in Real Estate

When offering guidance to the next generation of aspiring young women looking to carve their path in the world of real estate, Karen emphasizes the paramount importance of education. She firmly believes that a strong foundation of knowledge in the industry and the specific realm of real estate one intends to venture into is a vital asset.

In her measured advice, Karen focuses on the significance of hard work, advocating that aspiring women in this field should demonstrate not only dedication but also a willingness to outmatch their male counterparts in commitment and effort. Simultaneously, she talks about the value of an open mind and the capacity to absorb new insights, highlighting that continuous learning is a key ingredient for success in the competitive world of real estate.

Reflecting on her own journey, Karen candidly expresses her genuine appreciation for every day spent in the real estate business. She acknowledges the occasional frustrations and challenges that may arise but firmly maintains a sense of gratitude for being part of an industry that refuses to be mundane. Instead, she finds peace in an industry teeming with boundless opportunities. As she looks back on her many years of experience, Karen feels blessed to have embarked on this enlightening journey, brimming with growth and accomplishment.


  1. “In Karen’s world, success isn’t just measured in square feet but in the dedication, proactivity, and eagerness of her team members.”
  1. “In the realm of teamwork, my spirit of accessibility and support reign supreme.”
  1. “Competence, commitment, and the courage to say ‘I don’t know’—Karen Simon sets the standard in real estate.”