Each year, Midwest Real Estate News inducts a new class into its Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame. Last year, despite its challenges, was no exception. Here’s a look at the career of one of last year’s inductees, Linsey Cohen, chair of the real estate practice at the Chicago law firm of Gould & Ratner.
As chair of Gould & Ratner’s Real Estate Practice, Linsey Cohen draws upon 23 years of experience in all areas of real estate, including retail, office and multifamily. Her deal-making experience strikes the strategic balance between risk and executing her clients’ vision.
Cohen represents developers, owners, investors, property managers and entrepreneurs with property interests in Chicago and throughout the United States. She has an indefatigable business acumen that keeps good deals alive, even in the most complex negotiations.
“Every deal is different, in one way or another, and I enjoy the variety of opportunities that my clients have to be successful with their real estate strategies,” said Cohen. “I pride myself on my ‘business first’ perspective and help my clients to find the optimal business solution within a legal context.”
Cohen often counsels entrepreneurial and middle-market clients on corporate and business concerns beyond real estate, liaising with other Gould & Ratner lawyers in litigation, tax, construction and other related areas to resolve their issues. An important aspect of her practice is her active involvement in several real estate industry groups, including the International Council of Shopping Centers and Commercial Real Estate Executive Women’s Chicago chapter.
“I learn as much as I can about my clients’ businesses so that I can provide the best advice possible to support their real estate goals,” Cohen said. “I act as ‘inside counsel’—a trusted member of their strategic business team, and not just another lawyer.”
In 2019, Cohen joined the board of directors of ZCenter, a suburban Chicago-based nonprofit organization providing support to sexual abuse survivors. She also has been recognized as “Real Estate Lawyer of the Year” for 2020 by Illinois Real Estate Journal.
Away from the office, Cohen likes to stay active. Pre-pandemic, she was a triathlete, completing several races around the Midwest. She achieved a personal best time in a local half-marathon and recently took up paddle tennis.
“I am a pretty competitive person, so I enjoy seeing what I can achieve in these types of pursuits,” Cohen said.