Staff Spotlight: David Eisenman

August 23, 2023

August 23, 2023-Oakland, CA

David Eisenman joined Merritt in June 2020 as an Acquisitions Manager after finishing his M.B.A. at U.C. Berkeley.   

David has always been interested in cities since growing up in Washington, D.C. While attending Yale for his B.A., David learned about a career in city planning and changed his classes to Urban Studies. He knew the focus on creating housing, transit, and an enjoyable and equitable urban experience was the type of career he was interested in.  

After Yale, David moved to New York City to work in city government. He started off working for the Department of Small Business Services, which oversees local merchants’ associations and business improvement districts throughout NYC, and funds workforce development and business skills training programs for businesses and jobseekers. After this exposure to city government, he moved over to the New York Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and was there for three years. His role exposed him to public and private real estate transactions where his job was to represent the public interest by structuring and negotiating   large scale, mixed-use, and mixed-income development projects on city-owned land. David was exposed to many different types of deals, including the revitalization and redevelopment of one of the largest vacant sites in Manhattan with retail, office, and 1,000 residential units – half of which were designated as affordable housing. 

David’s time at NYCEDC highlighted his affinity for closing deals in a fast-paced and dynamic environment. He enjoyed working on complex real-estate transactions, and his role allowed him to represent the public interest and work to prioritize social impact. These deal closings were key in developing David’s ability to be creative and solutions-oriented, working with many different stakeholders to achieve an impactful agreement.  

Continuing to follow his interest in real estate, he worked in development in NYC before moving to Berkeley for grad school.  After living in California for a few months, the magnitude of the state’s housing crisis – a humanitarian crisis that showed the intersection of economic, education, and geographic disparities – became clear to him.   

“I went into affordable housing with a focus on finance to utilize the skills I gained while working in New York and continue to work in a field that values social impact,” shared David. He chose Berkeley for many reasons but the interdisciplinary graduate certificate in Real Estate allowed him to delve deeper into California’s housing industry by taking classes in the university’s urban planning and law programs in addition to the business school. “At the planning school, Carolina Reid’s class  on housing policy during my second year gave me the background knowledge, grounding, and confidence to broaden on my previous roles and move fully into affordable housing,” David said.   

When David finished his M.B.A. he found Merritt, a small and nimble mission-oriented organization that does small fund transactions with the opportunity for him to grow. “I chose Merritt because the day-to-day complex transactional work we do here was exactly what I imagined doing out of business school, and working here allows me to utilize my past work and academic experiences to help build housing for Californians,” David said.  

As Merritt worked on outlining and specifying vision, mission, and values, David was very involved, bringing thoughtful and important questions to the process. “If I had to choose a favorite value it would be a tossup between solutions-oriented and kindness,” said David, “because being kind is how you get the best out of people, even in the smallest of interactions. Having constant awareness of how you’re speaking to or emailing someone makes a difference in whether you become someone people want to work with.”   

David recently moved to LA from the Bay Area and has enjoyed learning about and exploring another city in California. Coming from NY, he really enjoys and values his new location living and working in a metropolis with such large and complex needs scattered across so many different stakeholders (counties, cities, developers, nonprofits, etc.). “It keeps it interesting and makes our work even more valuable to help different groups work together to build housing more efficiently and effectively.” He also loves the energy of a big city and the chance to explore new restaurants and neighborhoods.   

“It’s great to work somewhere where I’m genuinely excited to spend time with my colleagues,” shared David about the Merritt team. 

Thank you for your diligent and open work, David. We are grateful to have you on the acquisitions team as our Senior Acquisitions Manager and look forward to more years with you at Merritt!  

About Merritt Community Capital Corporation

Merritt Community Capital Corporation is a nonprofit dedicated to our mission to provide equity capital for affordable housing exclusively to California. We do this by partnering with mission-aligned affordable housing developers throughout the state to ensure the most critical communities are developed and maintained for low-income residents. Since 1989, Merritt has created and/or preserved 11,000 affordable homes, through investing over $1.2 billion in 26 separate funds, providing housing for over 29,700 people.



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