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GAVIN THOMAS

VICE PRESIDENT OF DEVELOPMENT

Gavin is at the forefront of bringing to life the many concepts of HCP projects and helps see them through every step of the way; from simple ideas to fully operating businesses. With a background rooted in development and hospitality, Gavin is a perfect fit to lead expansion in Indianapolis and played a significant role in opening the highly successful Bottleworks District. As Phase II of the district begins to unfold, Gavin’s knowledge and leadership will once again be trusted to bring HCP’s vision to life. Gavin accepts the challenges that are thrown his way and continues to embrace the freedom to do amazing things.
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What in the world were you doing before you came to work with HCP?

I was working on new development and redevelopments for a national retail REIT (real estate investment trust)
 

What was your first job?

Dishwasher at Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs and Restaurants.
 

So far, how has HCP been different from your previous work experience(s)?

Although HCP is a large company, it retains a very entrepreneurial ethos. It doesn’t feel “corporate”, and my contributions have a direct impact on the outcomes. That’s a really rewarding feeling that you often don’t get at other organizations.

What is your HCP Legacy?  Where did you start, and how did you get to where you are today?
 

I’ve had a wide and varied background in real estate development. I started in hospitality, studying markets throughout the United States, and making recommendations for new restaurant locations for a major national casual dining company. After graduate school, I moved to the landlord side and was involved in over $1B in retail shopping center acquisitions. Next, I ventured out as a private developer working on residential and commercial projects including developing and operating a specialty grocery market. Most recently, worked with a major retail developer developing and redeveloping retail and mixed-use properties across the country. Now, I’m here at HCP. 

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What do you like to do for fun?

I really enjoy traveling to new places with my family. We make it a priority to schedule several significant trips every year.  I also enjoy the great outdoors and riding my mountain bike as much as possible.

We say to “embrace the freedom to do amazing things”.  What is the most amazing thing you’ve accomplished in your time here?

That’s an easy one. The opportunity to be involved in a project like the Bottleworks District is a once in a career type project. These types of projects are difficult and take a lot of time, resources and talented people to make happen.  However, the hardest things are often the most worthwhile and amazing things. I feel fortunate to be a part of the team and played a part in creating an amazing thing called Bottleworks.

What is your favorite saying from the HCP Manifesto, and why?  How do you apply it to your everyday?

“We didn’t come this far to only come this far”. Complacency and hubris have no place at HCP. We are  looking to improve what we have already done but also learning on how we can do it better in the future. That is critical for long term success.

In your career, what is next for you?

In the near term I’m looking forward to future projects and making positive impacts to the communities that we develop. I’m also interested in growing professionally and leading broader teams and helping younger associates gain the knowledge and experience that was shown to me when I started.

If you had to pick a favorite property/project in our portfolio which one would it be and why?

Bottleworks District. Not only was it a professional challenge but it has made a major impact to the quality of life in Indianapolis.

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Give us your best “elevator speech” for anyone thinking about joining HCP. 

HCP is a different type of real estate developer. We do incredible projects, and you will be involved in a wide variety of asset types. It is definitely a fantastic place to learn and grow. It’s also a place where you may wear different hats on different days. If you’re uncomfortable with change and growth, it might not be the place for you but if you thrive in challenging and meaningful work and are a hard worker and team player it is a great place to build a career.       

        

What are some words of wisdom for anyone on their journey to create their own HCP Legacy?

Become an expert in what you do and be willing to share that knowledge with others. This is key in building trust and confidence with those around you. People will notice and it will open doors and opportunities for you to create your own legacy. 

If HCP were a celebrity, who would it be and why?

Keith Richards. Unconventional, extremely talented, and still rocking it.

List one HCP employee benefit/perk that’s made an impact on your life and why.

Unlimited vacation. We work hard. Having time to recharge and not worrying about how many days to allocate over the year is a nice perk.