Beth Azor, founder and CEO of Azor Advisory Services, is a familiar face on the commercial real estate speaker circuit; such engagements have become a de facto part of her career trajectory. Not surprisingly, put her first on our list of potential speakers to call for our upcoming Women of Influence conference being held later this month. But Azor is also heavily involved in retail real estate having just sold three of her four shopping centers. We caught up with her to hear more about what she is doing as she preps for our conference.

What I am doing now: I started my company in 2004. The goal was to acquire shopping centers but it turned into a business where I also do a lot of training consulting, which originated from REITs asking me to teach their leasing teams how to prospect and negotiate retail leases.

On the demand for retail training: For the last six to nine to 12 months demand for retail training on leasing has decreased because we have the highest occupancy we have ever seen. But it is starting to pick up again.

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Erika Morphy

Erika Morphy has been writing about commercial real estate at for more than ten years, covering the capital markets, the Mid-Atlantic region and national topics. She's a nerd so favorite examples of the former include accounting standards, Basel III and what Congress is brewing.