Our goal is to be the most unique, interesting and informative property marketing and networking venue serving the retail real estate industry.  The Retail Bus Tour is driven to provide the greatest value for all shopping center owners, brokers, retailers, service providers and attendees.





In 1991, after (2) years of working on Wall Street with Oppenheimer & Co. as a corporate financial analyst, Gary began his commercial real estate career and was directly responsible for the leasing, management and redevelopment of over 1,500,000 square feet of retail properties located in NY, MA, OH, PA, VA and TN. In 1995, Gary co-founded Net Properties Corp., one of the first Real Estate Internet firms that was later sold in 1997 to a major advertising firm in New York City.  After moving his family to South Florida in June, 1997, Gary joined the Lefmark Group and was directly involved with the redevelopment of over (20) major retail projects in South Florida including the Kendall Mall, Plaza West, Northridge Shopping Center, Plaza at Delray, Palm Aire Marketplace, Homestead Shopping Center and Lake Park Shopping Center.  

Gary has been involved in all aspects of land acquisition and development along with leasing and brokerage activities for retail and office properties. Additional activities include exclusive tenant representation for national and regional retailers.   Gary founded Atlantic Commercial Group, Inc. in 2000.  Gary received his Bachelor’s Degree from SUNY at Oneonta and his Masters of Business Administration from SUNY at Binghamton.



Palmer is a recognized expert in retail real estate, a social media authority, and has been active in the Georgia #CRE market since 1994. Palmer has been involved as an agent in over 300 #CRE transactions helping his retail and restaurant clients pinpoint the highest revenue markets, trade areas, and locations throughout the southeast. A high-caliber innovator and leader, Palmer has long-standing, high-value relationships with global institutions, private investors, international, regional, local, and mom-and-pop landlords, and most major industry players in retail real estate. Palmer received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from The University of Georgia in Real Estate and Urban Development, obtained the Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) designation in 2000, and served as the 2011 chairman of the ICSC Southeast Conference planning committee. Palmer lives in east Cobb county with his wife and their two children.



Mr. Hodes currently serves as Managing Director for The Retail Bus Tour. He is responsible for the operation and administration of the company. His area of oversight is for the delivery of a unique industry marketing event via a local property tour and professional networking opportunities. Mr. Hodes has over thirty years of professional experience in association and non-profit management. The executive administrative positions Mr. Hodes has held during eleven years of non-profit management, twenty-two years of association management and six years in the private sector have required effective management ability, organizational proficiency, fiscal responsibility, and accountability for goal attainment.

Mr. Hodes expectations of achieving successful execution and accomplishment of business plans and goals Mr. Hodes designed and implemented throughout Mr. Hodes career have consistently been attained. Mr. Hodes is a goal oriented, entrepreneurial executive who has served as a key team member and decision maker in a diverse range of businesses and demonstrated abilities in strategic planning, relationship building, sales, marketing, communication and implementing change. A continuing responsibility was the effective financial planning and management, as well as income generation, necessary to support the operation of the organizations Mr. Hodes managed. Accountability for results and subsequent expenditure was accomplished with an accuracy that could be measured against the most exacting standards. Mr. Hodes possess the skill to successfully communicate with diverse groups of individuals in order to achieve established goals.

Mr. Hodes is native born to the Orlando area, and though Mr. Hodes career has previously given him some opportunities in other locales throughout the southeast, for the last twenty-five years Mr. Hodes have enjoyed the stability and comfort of residing in his home state amidst family and friends.



Michael Lagazo is a Senior Associate of Rosano Partners – Retail Services. Michael in based out of San Diego, California providing owner and tenant representation services in southern California. Michael optimizes the value of the property in a trade area, identifies qualified prospects, and designs strategic marketing and financial strategies in agency leasing, portfolio leasing, investment sales, and valuation.

Michael matches tenants’ business objectives to real estate solutions. When merchants are considering entry into a new market, expansion into an established one, or planning a new store concept, Michael offers strategic planning, site selection and acquisition, as well as disposition services. Prior to this role, Michael managed a retail portfolio of 1.5 million square feet in California and Arizona for primary lenders such as GE Capital, Wells Fargo, AIG, and secondary lenders like C-III Capital, CW Capital, and LNR Property, LLC. overseeing operations, initiation of landlord negotiations, project positioning and marketing, offer solicitation and review, and contract negotiation and execution.

Michael began his career in upscale retail real estate over ten years ago in shopping center management for global and national REITs like Westfield and Forest City. Later, in luxury hospitality as a General Manager for Aviara, a Four Seasons resort development. Throughout Michael’s career in retail real estate, he oversaw as many as 328 lease cycles in a year managing super regional malls as large as 160-acres valued at $428,000,000 with 170 specialty stores. Michael holds a MBA and a dual B.S. earned partly during active military service with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Michael is a member of ICSC and has been noted in Shopping Centers Today, the Wall Street Journal, Commercial Property Executive, National Mortgage Professionals, MIPIM, and CRE radio shows. He participates in and attends conferences including ICSC, ULI, MAPIC, REITWeek, CoreNet Global, and NRF.


 Greg Newman graduated from Western Michigan University in 1995 and has been a licensed real estate agent since 1998. Greg became a forming partner at Keystone Commercial Real Estate in February 2012. Prior to forming Keystone Commercial Real Estate, his past experience includes property management and commercial brokerage with Schostak Brothers & Company, Inc., Insite Commercial Group, L.L.C. and The Beale Group, Inc., where he was promoted to Vice President in 2011. Greg is an active member of ICSC and has been recognized as a CoStar Power Broker for lease transactions in southeast Michigan. Greg’s strong focus areas include representing retailers in their site acquisitions, leasing regional and local shopping center space, pre-leasing new retail space and commercial property management. Additionally, Greg has proven his success in shopping center investment sales representing both buyers and sellers.




Lawrence began his commercial real estate career working on the landlord side of the shopping center business, with responsibilities over thirteen years for leasing, re-development, management and construction for over 1,800,000 square feet of a retail property portfolio located in NJ and FL.

“Lars” founded a real estate brokerage and consulting firm, before joining a Starwood retail development joint venture and relocating to Providence, RI where he had cross disciplinary responsibilities, including development, re-development, leasing, property management and acquisition duties in shopping centers and mixed use properties located throughout the USA.

When the development cycle turned, Lawrence founded Platt Realty Group, LLC, a commercial real estate brokerage firm in RI, for the purpose of representing landlords and retailers. Lawrence was nominated “Realtor of the Year” in 2011, is a multi-year recipient of Co-Star’s Providence “Broker of the Year” designation in 2006, 2007 and 2008. He has been actively involved in various professional, civic and not-for-profit leadership capacities, including: the International Council of Shopping Centers, EVP for Pawtucket Armory Association (a visual and performance arts center and high school), Board member on the Pawtucket Foundation and Director for RICABOR. Lars received a Bachelor’s Degree from Columbia University, and attended the Certificate program at New York University’s Real Estate Institute.


Britta Eriksson began selling real estate for Prudential while attending the University of Florida.  After earning a Bachelors in Marketing and a Masters in Real Estate and Urban Analysis, she began her retail sector career at Beall’s Department Stores as a site selection analyst.   She was skilled in using GIS to analyze consumer behavior and hone in on optimal site locations for the chain; calculating accurate sales and cannibalization projections that were within 2% of actual performance. Britta would later go on to oversee all real estate functions for the company including research, site selection, property management, lease administration, store planning, and construction.  During her eight year tenure, she was involved in securing 60% of the store base for the chain, which enabled her to gain in-depth knowledge of all Florida markets.


 After Beall’s, Britta founded Leaseconomics, LLC, a boutique consulting firm that specializes in unique value added services for retailers and landlords.  She recently expanded the market research and GIS mapping division to provide quality, affordable, and realtime analysis to the retail sector. In addition to operating Leaseconomics, Britta provides acquisition and leasing brokerage to owners throughout Florida where she goes beyond a typical brokerage role to streamline the due diligence process by leveraging her Leaseconomics resources.


 Britta has also been actively involved in professional organizations as a committee member chairwomen, and speaker including co-chair of ICSC’s Tampa Next Generation Committee and chair of the 2013 West Florida Idea Exchange.  Most recently, Britta accepted the role of Regional Director for the Tampa Retail Bus Tour.