Partner Profile: Melissa Goins

When Melissa Goins graduated from Marquette University, she planned to embark on a career of investigative FBI work. But Goins soon realized that her urgent desire to help revitalize some of Milwaukee’s inner-city neighborhoods might make her better suited for life as an entrepreneur, rather than an agent.

She enrolled in Marquette University’s Associates in Commercial Real Estate Program (ACRE), which seeks to create diversity in the industry through networking, training and placement, and, soon, Goins was launching Maures Development Group, LLC.

In 2006, the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA), Wisconsin’s Housing Finance Agency, selected Maures to participate in its Mentor Protégé Program, which pairs emerging real estate development businesses owned by people of color with established developers. Within a year, Maures had become the first for-profit woman and minority owned firm to receive an allocation of Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) in the program’s history.

This year marks Maures’ 5th anniversary and Melissa now feels that a talent for real estate development is innate. She chooses her developments after doing much of her own research: driving throughout neglected neighborhoods and finding parcels of land to revitalize. After selecting a location, she finds out who owns the land or building, how long their lease is for, what they paid and other details. There’s a lot of tough, analytical work involved, but, she says, when it’s time to choose her next project, she often relies on “meditation and prayer.”

Maures has developed 85 units of apartments with an aggregate development total of $20 million in four years: Teutonia Gardens, Franklin Square and Heart & Hope Place. This year, Maures will break ground on their newest development, partnering with Brinshore for a third time, building Century City Lofts, a 37 unit project reflecting an $8.36 million investment.

Maures is quickly developing a reputation for innovative projects targeted to historically neglected neighborhoods. Because of Melissa’s commitment to Milwaukee and its central city neighborhoods, she has been invited to participate in the Milwaukee Urban Agriculture Network and the African American Women’s Fund and
Rotary among many others.

Melissa has made it her mission to help communities help themselves, “one building, one business and one opportunity at a time.” It’s not just about bricks and mortar, she says. “It’s about revitalizing neighborhoods and bringing back pride and hope to people.”

Brinshore is proud to have Melissa as a partner.

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