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HARTFORD-Locally based CB Richard Ellis Realty Finance Inc. has appointed Kenneth J. Witkin as president and CEO, effective Sept. 4. Witkin will replace Ray Wirta, who has served as CBRE Realty Finance’s interim president and CEO since April 25. In addition to his role as CEO, Witkin will serve on the company’s board of directors.

Witkin most recently served as an EVP, senior division executive in the commercial real estate banking group of Bank of America. He was responsible for all commercial real estate banking in the Northeast US and managing TriSail Capital Corp., a national high yield capital provider to the real estate investment and development market.

“We are extremely pleased to have Ken join the CBRE Realty Finance team as CEO,” says Ray Wirta, executive chairman. “The board of directors was impressed with his deep experience within the real estate and lending markets, his proven leadership capabilities and his passion for building CBRE Realty Finance’s strong foundation and driving profitability. With over 25 years in the business, we are confident Ken is the right person to lead the company.”

Prior to its acquisition by Bank of America, Witkin spent 15 years at FleetBoston Corp. in numerous executive roles. Most recently, he was part of the management team leading the real estate banking business, financial institutions group, technology lending and a member of its leadership advisory team. Over the years at FleetBoston Witkin also held senior roles managing corporate syndications, national asset based lending and leverage finance businesses.

Witkin began his career at Citibank where he worked in asset based lending and Citicorp Real Estate Inc. before joining First National Bank of Chicago managing their real estate commercial lending business in Florida. Prior to moving to New England to join FleetBoston, Witkin spent seven years as COO of a private real estate developmentcompany.

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