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NEW YORK CITY-While the nation bit it’s collective nails over the Bush/Kerry race, another presidential race was won handily last night–by a woman–as the National Association of Real Estate editors convened here for its New York City Summit. But not before keynote speaker Stephen Siegel, chairman of global brokerage for CB Richard Ellis, weighed in on such issues as the future of Downtown and the oft-debated Jets stadium project.

There’s little doubt that Downtown will eventually come back, but Siegel actually predicted that within the next five years, the great rental and investment divide that separated the subsector from Midtown Manhattan will be gone. “Downtown in five years will enjoy rental rates and sale prices equivalent with Midtown,” he told the assembled crowd of journalists at PJ Clarke’s Restaurant, an East Side eatery in which Siegel is an investor.

He also used the night to voice his support for the hot-button West Side development of a new stadium for the New York Jets, saying simply that there are few major cities where a sports venue of this sort is not an integral part of its economic picture.

Naree also used the night to elect its new slate of officers. Real Estate Media editor in chief Michael G. Desiato moved from his president’s seat to become chairman as Sue Doerfler of the Arizona Republic was installed as president. (Real Estate Media is GlobeSt.com’s parent organization.) Naree’s new vice president is Alan J. Heavens of the Philadelphia Inquirer, and second VP is Jeff Lubar, MICA. The San Diego Union-Tribune’s Carl Larsen is the group’s new treasurer, and Richard Paoli of the San Francisco Chronicle moves into the Secretary’s post.

In her remarks to the group, Doerfler committed to creating new member-support activities and increasing volunteerism within the association.

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