David S. Cordish is Chairman of The Cordish Companies.
Mr. Cordish has a B.A. and a Masters in Liberal Arts from Johns Hopkins University. He has an LLB degree from the University of Maryland Law School and was on the Board of Editors of the Law Review. His career has included service in law, government, and commercial businesses. He served in both the Carter and Reagan Administrations as head of the Urban Development Action Grant Program.
Mr. Cordish has served on numerous national, state, and local boards, including professional, civic, and charitable. He has acted as a pro bono consultant to Johns Hopkins University, Loyola University Maryland, Stevenson University, and other non-profit entities. Mr. Cordish was the recipient of the Johns Hopkins Real Estate Program’s Leadership Award, the David M. Sampson Award by the Greater Baltimore Urban League, the Baltimore WaveMaker Lifetime Achievement Award by the Urban Land Institute, and the Daily Record’s Most Admired CEO Award. Mr. Cordish is the recipient of numerous other regional and national honors and awards.
Jonathan A. Cordish is a Principal, Vice President & the Director of Finance for The Cordish Companies of Baltimore, Maryland, USA.
Mr. Cordish has over twenty-five years of experience in the financing and management of high-growth enterprises in real estate, gaming, media and technology. He joined The Cordish Companies in 2001 as its Director of Finance, and has overseen the finance and capital markets functions of the companies since that time. He has led the financing of all of Cordish’s gaming and real estate developments.
Prior to joining Cordish, Mr. Cordish was a Principal at Riggs Capital Partners, a private equity investment firm in Washington, DC. Mr. Cordish was also the co-founder in 1994 of Seventh Art Releasing, a media distribution company, and served as its CEO from 1994 to 1997. He remains Chairman of Seventh Art Releasing. Mr. Cordish holds an MBA with Distinction from the Wharton School, and a Bachelor of Arts summa cum laude from Brandeis University. Mr. Cordish resides in Baltimore, Maryland. Philanthropically, he serves on the Board of Directors of the Friends of Yemin Orde, and is a Trustee of the Cordish Family Foundation, as well as being actively involved in a number of local Baltimore philanthropies.
Blake Cordish is Principal and Vice President of The Cordish Companies, as well as President of its Real Estate Development division. Within this capacity, Mr. Cordish is responsible for the development, design and construction of the Company’s portfolio of commercial real estate, coworking spaces, entertainment districts, gaming, hotels, residential, restaurant and sports-anchored projects. Under his direction, the Company has won five of its seven Urban Land Institute Awards of Excellence in recognition of its urban revitalization accomplishments, which is more than any developer in North America.
In his time at the Company, Mr. Cordish has overseen the development of several major projects within the Company’s portfolio including the Power & Light District in Kansas City, MO; Maryland Live! Casino & Hotel in the Baltimore/Washington Corridor; Fourth Street Live! in Louisville, KY; and the Seminole Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos in Hollywood and Tampa, FL. Additionally, Mr. Cordish played a pivotal role in developing the Company's Live! Brand which has grown to encompass dining and entertainment districts, as well as branded casinos and hotels. Welcoming over 50 million annual visitors, Cordish's Live! Districts are among the highest profile sports, dining, entertainment and hospitality destinations in the county.
Mr. Cordish has been a major player in establishing and growing the Company’s portfolio of sports-anchored projects. Today, under Mr. Cordish’s supervision, The Cordish Companies has become a market leader in sports-anchored, mixed-use developments. The Company is proud to have partnered with many of the country’s leading professional sports franchises and media companies to develop world-class sports-anchored destinations such as Ballpark Village in St. Louis, MO in partnership with the St. Louis Cardinals; XFINITY Live! in Philadelphia, PA in partnership with Comcast-Spectator; and recently announced Texas Live! in Arlington, TX in partnership with the Texas Rangers.
Prior to joining The Cordish Companies over 20 years ago, Mr. Cordish worked for the Investment Banking Department of Schroders & Co. in its Mergers and Acquisitions division. He graduated with a bachelor degree in Political Science from Princeton University and focused his independent research through the Woodrow Wilson School of Politics. Mr. Cordish was also a member of the varsity tennis team at Princeton.
Mr. Cordish currently resides in Baltimore, MD with his wife and three children. He is involved in a variety of philanthropic and civic endeavors including serving on the Board of Trustees for Johns Hopkins University.
Reed S. Cordish is a Principal and Partner of The Cordish Companies, one of the largest real estate development and entertainment companies in the United States. He is also President of Entertainment Consulting International (ECI), an entertainment and restaurant company Mr. Cordish founded, along with other Partners of The Cordish Companies.
At The Cordish Companies, Mr. Cordish has played a pivotal role in developing the company's Live! brand, which has grown to encompass large-scale entertainment projects, sports-anchored districts, casinos, hotels and residential projects. Welcoming over 55 million visitors annually, Cordish's Live! projects are among the highest profile sports, dining, gaming, entertainment and hospitality destinations in the country. In addition, Mr. Cordish has developed strategic partnerships for Cordish’s projects with multiple major international brands and companies, including Comcast, NBC Sports and Fox Sports.
As President of ECI, Mr. Cordish has grown the company from its inception into one of the largest dining, beverage and entertainment companies in the country. ECI has created and developed multiple award-winning concepts, including growth-brands Sports & Social and PBR, and partnerships with premier chefs and celebrities like Guy Fieri and Troy Aikman.
Mr. Cordish has a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University, where he was awarded the William Roper Award for scholastic, sportsmanship and athletic excellence. Mr. Cordish took an 18-month hiatus from the Company to serve in the White House as an Assistant to the President in the Trump Administration. Prior to joining The Cordish Companies, Mr. Cordish was a world-ranked professional tennis player on the Association of Tennis Professionals Tour. He serves on the Board of Trustees for Johns Hopkins Hospital, and is a Trustee of the National Medal of Honor Museum and a Founding Member of its National Leadership Council. Mr. Cordish lives in Baltimore, Maryland with his wife, Maggie, and their three children.
Joseph Weinberg is Managing Partner and CEO of Cordish Gaming Group. For the past 30 years, he has overseen the acquisition, financing, design, development and management of high profile hotel, gaming, retail and entertainment projects worldwide. Mr. Weinberg has also overseen the Company’s expansion efforts in Asia and Europe.
Mr. Weinberg serves as a trustee on a number of philanthropic foundation boards, including the Joseph & Debra Weinberg Family Foundation, formed by Mr. Weinberg and his wife to support underprivileged communities in the United States and internationally. A graduate of the University of Virginia, he played Division I Baseball for The University.
Zed Smith is the Chief Operating Officer for The Cordish Companies. In this capacity, Mr. Smith oversees all aspects of the Company’s operating properties portfolio which include a number of high-profile entertainment, mixed-use and sports-anchored developments located in urban communities across the country, many of which have been transformative with regard to their economic and cultural impact.
Prior to joining The Cordish Companies in 2002, Mr. Smith was the founder and President of Urban Asset Management, a Baltimore-based real estate development firm that specialized in retail development in urban communities which included project work in Baltimore, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. Zed began his real estate career with The Rouse Company in Columbia, Maryland.
Mr. Smith holds a B.S. in Accounting from Morgan State University, and currently serves on the Boards of the Urban Alliance of Baltimore, a youth development organization that empowers under-resourced youth to aspire, work, and succeed through paid internships, formal training, and mentoring; The Inner Harbor Project, a peer-to-peer youth leadership program; The Maryland Food Bank; and The Waterfront Partnership of Baltimore.
Charles Jacobs is Principal, Senior Vice President and General Counsel of The Cordish Companies.
Since joining The Cordish Companies in 1988, Mr. Jacobs has supervised or been involved with substantially all of the Companies’ significant business and real estate projects.
Prior to joining Cordish, Mr. Jacobs was an Associate at Frank, Bernstein, Conway and Goldman and served as a Law Clerk for Judge Rita Davidson of the Maryland Court of Appeals.
Mr. Jacobs graduated Cum Laude from the Benjamin M. Cardozo School of Law with a Juris Doctor degree, where he was a member of the Law Review. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from the State University of New York at Binghamton, where he was a four-year letterman on the Men’s Varsity Swim Team. He has served on the Boards of Trustees of multiple private schools, including two special education schools.
Robert Norton is a veteran gaming executive with extensive knowledge of the industry and more than 20 years of hands-on operational experience.
As President of Cordish Gaming Group, Mr. Norton leads the acquisition, planning, development and management operations of The Cordish Companies’ worldwide gaming projects, including the Live! Casino brand in Maryland and Pennsylvania. The Company is currently embarking on major expansion projects at Maryland Live! Casino, in Hanover, MD, to include the addition of the flagship Live! Hotel and event center; and the development of the new Live! Hotel & Casino in the Stadium District in Philadelphia, PA. Mr. Norton is also involved with several other new corporate and international development projects in the pipeline.
Mr. Norton joined The Cordish Companies in 2011, as President and General Manager of Maryland Live! Casino, where he was responsible for one of the largest casino openings in history when Maryland Live! opened to the public in June 2012. Under his leadership, Maryland Live! has consistently ranked as the highest grossing casino in the Mid-Atlantic region. Mr. Norton is still actively involved in all aspects of the property’s operations, including gaming, finance, marketing, human resources, hospitality and information technology. He is committed to maintaining Maryland Live!’s leadership position in the state by creating a world-class casino entertainment experience through innovation, customer service and marketing, with an emphasis on driving revenue.
Mr. Norton has been recognized throughout his career for driving multi-million dollar projects forward, holding top executive positions with the MTR Gaming Group and Isle of Capri Casinos, companies whose combined revenues top $1.5 billion. His leadership and passion became hallmarks during his tenures at both companies, guiding projects from inception to opening and on to profitability.
From 2009 to 2011, Mr. Norton served as Chief Operating Officer of MTR Gaming Group, Inc., where he was responsible for the strategic direction and management of casino and racetrack facilities in three states and the execution of cost containment measures that saved $15 million annually. Under his leadership, MTR grew the company’s earnings (EBITDA) in each operating year, despite over one billion dollars of new competition entering the market.
Prior to MTR, Mr. Norton held a variety of top executive positions for the Isle of Capri Casinos from 2000 to 2009. As Corporate VP of Operations, he was responsible for the revenue in gaming departments spanning 16 casino resorts. In addition, he was integral in setting the direction relating to the CRM system, as well as gaming technology. Mr. Norton was also a key player with the team that designed and opened four different casinos, as well as numerous expansion projects.
Over the past 15 years, Mr. Norton has been selected to serve on the Advisory Panels of several leading slot manufacturing companies, including Aristocrat, IGT, Bally’s and WMS, lending his expertise to the strategic planning, design and rollout of innovative, state-of-the art slot machines. He has also consulted on system development for the manufacturers, specifically offering insight from a casino floor design and optimal operational perspective. In addition to the advisory panels, Mr. Norton has pioneered the prospectus of internet gaming throughout the United States on behalf of multiple gaming operators.
Mr. Norton serves on the Boards of Directors for the American Gaming Association, the Anne Arundel Local Development Council, the Anne Arundel Community College Foundation, and the Annapolis and Anne Arundel County Chamber of Commerce.
He’s a graduate of University of Nevada, Las Vegas, with a Bachelor of Science in Hotel Administration. He currently resides in Anne Arundel County, MD, with his wife and four children.
Taylor Gray currently serves as Vice President of Development for The Cordish Companies, as well as an attorney for the Company’s Real Estate Division.
During his 13 years of employment with The Cordish Companies, Mr. Gray has overseen the planning and development of numerous projects within the Company’s portfolio of urban developments both nationally and locally. Mr. Gray oversaw the planning, design and development of Bayou Place and Bayou Place Offices in downtown Houston, TX, which transformed a vacated convention center into a thriving dining, entertainment and corporate office development. More recently, Mr. Gray managed every aspect of the planning, design, and development of the new Towson Square dining & entertainment district in Towson, MD, which has brought over 1,500 new jobs to the area, as well as generated approximately $1.75 million in County taxes each year, including $840,000 from amusement taxes, and an estimated $2.9 million each year in State sales tax.
Currently, Mr. Gray is overseeing the development of numerous projects including one of the Company’s highest profile sports-anchored destinations, Texas Live!, in partnership with the Texas Rangers and City of Arlington, TX, as well as the flagship Live! by Loews Hotel in Arlington, TX in partnership with Loews Hotels & Co. and the Texas Rangers. The $250 million world-class Texas Live! and the Live! by Loews hotel is part of a $4 billion vision for the Arlington Entertainment District that includes the Rangers new $1 billion ballpark and preservation of Globe Life Park. The development is projected to significantly exceed $100 million per year in economic output to the City of Arlington and Tarrant County, over $2 billion in direct and indirect salaries during its first forty years, approximately 3,025 new jobs for local and regional residents, including 2,000 construction jobs and 1,025 permanent jobs, along with numerous vendor opportunities for local, minority, women and veteran-owned businesses.
Mr. Gray is also leading the development of the Company’s new $200 million flagship Live! Hotel, a luxury hotel, spa and event center at Live! Casino within the Baltimore/Washington Corridor. The flagship Live! Hotel will be located directly adjacent to Live! Casino at Arundel Mills and will add an additional 350,000-square-feet of space to the State's largest gaming facility. Featuring a 17-story hotel tower with 310 luxury guest rooms, an event center, meeting spaces, new dining options, and a day spa/salon, the expansion will offer guests of the Casino the opportunity to play the day away, then relax and rejuvenate with comfortable accommodations and amenities just steps from the casino floor.
Mr. Gray is a member of the American Bar Association and the Maryland Bar Association, as well as a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers and the National and Baltimore Chapters of the Urban Land Institute. As an attorney for The Cordish Companies, Mr. Gray has secured over $500 million in financing for several projects including the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casinos in Hollywood and Tampa, FL; Fourth Street Live! in Louisville, KY; Bayou Place and Bayou Place Offices in Houston, TX; and Towson Square in Towson, MD. Mr. Gray was recognized by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in 2007 for his work during the Bayou Place Offices development and was honored with the Award of Excellence for Renovation & Restoration for Design for the project. Mr. Gray was also awarded the Paul L. Cordish Achievement Award in 2010, the highest and most prestigious award given each year on behalf of the Cordish Family to an individual who possesses and implements the family’s core values of quality, entrepreneurial spirit, long-term personal relationships and integrity with the highest regard.
Nick Benjamin is a Vice President of Development and Managing Director of Multifamily Development for The Cordish Companies, involved in all facets of development including planning, legal work, financing, public entitlement, construction, leasing and property management. In his capacity as Executive Director of the eight city-block Kansas City Power & Light District, Benjamin has overseen more than 100% increases in both total occupancy and total sales volume. The $800M Power & Light District has truly been a transformative project for downtown Kansas City, catalyzing an urban renaissance featuring a 500% increase in total downtown population, tremendous growth in leisure travel and convention business and a more than $50M annual increase in the total downtown tax base after decades of decline. Building on the first phase of the Power & Light District, Benjamin has helped launch more than $200M in new development projects in Kansas City, including the One Light and Two Light luxury apartment buildings. One Light, the first of four high-rise apartment buildings totaling 1200 units and $500M that The Cordish Companies will develop in downtown Kansas City, was the first new-construction, market-rate, high-rise apartment building in the history of downtown Kansas City. It has enjoyed extraordinary success since its opening in 2015, hitting 100% occupancy within 4 months of completion. Over the next two years, Benjamin will be managing the development of an additional $375M of new construction residential projects in multiple urban US markets where The Cordish Companies have a footprint.
Benjamin is a member of the Kansas City Streetcar Authority, the Board of Directors of Launch KC, the Board of Directors of Visit KC and the Advocacy Council for the Kansas City Economic Development Corporation. In addition he serves on the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of the Kansas City Downtown Council. Prior to joining The Cordish Company in 2008, Benjamin was an attorney at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in New York, New York. He has a B.A. from Princeton University where he was Co-Captain of the Varsity Tennis Team. He has a J.D from the University Of Virginia School Of Law.
Melissa Frank joined The Cordish Companies in 2006 and currently serves as Vice President of Finance.
Ms. Frank focuses on underwriting and project finance across the three major divisions of Cordish, including its Gaming & Lodging Division. She has been integral to originating and closing more than $800 million in complex construction and permanent debt financings during her tenure with the Company, which has included multiple casino financings, including that for Maryland Live! Casino, in Hanover, MD.
Ms. Frank has a Bachelor of Business Administration from The University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana, with a concentration in Finance and Economics.
Paul Simon joined The Cordish Companies in 2011 bringing over 30 years of accounting and financial management experience in closely held family businesses. Mr. Simon’s primary responsibilities include the day-to-day accounting, treasury management and financial reporting for the family investment portfolio. In addition, Mr. Simon manages the company’s tax department.
Prior to joining Cordish Mr. Simon served as chief financial officer for several large family owned companies in the Maryland area. His industry experience includes real estate, distribution and manufacturing. Before entering private industry Mr. Simon spent ten years in public practice serving a diverse range of clients.
He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in the state of Maryland.
Cari Furman joined The Cordish Companies in 2010 and serves as Director of Communications. Ms. Furman is responsible for external and internal communications for the Company, working closely with civic, community, development and media partners, as well as team members nationwide.
Ms. Furman manages public and media relations for the Company’s core businesses including its Entertainment Division, which spans across several hospitality platforms including Casinos, Restaurants, Hotels, Sports-Anchored Developments and Entertainment Districts, as well as its Commercial Real Estate, Residential and Coworking Divisions. In this capacity, Ms. Furman oversees communication initiatives for the Company’s portfolio of projects, including its Live! branded developments which welcome over 55 million visitors annually and are among the highest profile dining, entertainment and hospitality destinations in the country.
Ms. Furman is a member of the Urban Land Institute, International Council of Shopping Centers, Public Relations Society of America and the American Marketing Association.
Dana Welsch joined The Cordish Companies in 2015 and serves as Director of Marketing. Ms. Welsch is responsible for brand development, creation of collateral, website & digital marketing, print advertising, events & trade shows, photography, video and creative services.
Ms. Welsch oversees corporate marketing for the Company’s development, sponsorship and leasing teams, which span across several hospitality platforms including Casinos, Restaurants, Hotels, Sports-Anchored Developments and Entertainment Districts, as well as its Commercial Real Estate, Residential and Coworking Divisions.
Ms. Welsch is a member of the Urban Land Institute, International Council of Shopping Centers and American Marketing Association.
Tunnie Ping joined The Cordish Companies in January, 2000 as Director of Civil Engineering and Surveying. Prior to Joining The Cordish Companies, Mr. Ping was Managing Partner of Windward Associates, Inc., a civil engineering, land planning and surveying firm for 20 years. Mr. Ping attended the University of Baltimore, majoring in Business Law, and Johns Hopkins McCoy School of Engineering. Mr. Ping received his Degree in Business Management from Johns Hopkins University in 1972.
As Managing Partner of Windward Associates Associates, Inc., Mr. Ping successfully designed numerous residential, commercial and governmental projects in Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania. Mr. Ping is a Licensed Professional Surveyor in Maryland and Delaware.
As Director of Engineering for The Cordish Companies, Mr. Ping participates in land use planning of The Cordish Companies' retail, commercial, residential and entertainment projects. In addition to in‐house civil engineering design and land surveying, Mr. Ping supervises and directs The Cordish Companies' project civil, geotechnical and environmental consultants from preliminary concept plans to final construction and entitlements.
Richard Burns has over 30 years of experience designing and implementing successful, award winning urban residential mixed-use projects. In cities throughout the United States - including Baltimore, Washington, DC, Philadelphia, Kansas City, Dallas and Houston - Mr. Burns has been the lead design architect for over 25,000 total residential units. In private practice for 25 years serving as Senior Design Partner for Design Collective, Inc. in Baltimore, Mr. Burns has collaborated with some of the country’s leading residential developers including The Bozzuto Company, The Hanover Company, Gables Development, The Kurshner Companies, Federal Realty and The Cordish Companies, to name a few.
Since retiring from private practice in 2011, Mr. Burns has served as Director of Architecture and Design for The Cordish Companies, leading the design of such prominent urban mixed-use projects as Ballpark Village in St. Louis, Power and Light District in Kansas City, and Texas Live in Arlington, Texas.
Mr. Burns has a Masters’ degree in both Architecture and Urban Design from Princeton University. As a resident of Baltimore he has served on the Board of the American Institute of Architects, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Baltimore Zoo and the Neighborhood Design Center. In 2012 Mr. Burns was appointed by the Mayor of Baltimore to serve on the City’s Urban Design and Architecture Review Panel.
He is the proud caretaker of two English Bulldogs, Stella and Brando.
Jonathan Sinex has been a Principal with Cordish Private Ventures, LLC, the investment arm of The Cordish Companies, since 2012. He is responsible for sourcing, evaluating and managing all private equity investments of the firm. He is currently exclusively focused on, and heads management of, Cordish Dixon Private Equity Partners, our joint venture investment platform formed with Dixon Advisory & Superannuation Services of Australia.
Prior to Cordish, Jonathan worked as a private equity investor at Goldman Sachs and Devonwood Investors. He began his career as an investment banker at Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc.
Jonathan has a B.A. from Middlebury College, and a MBA with highest honors from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business.