James Freel will manage the real estate investment group at Amalgamated Bank as senior vice president and chief real estate officer for its institutional asset management and custody division, it was announced today.

Based in New York City, Freel will report to Patrick O’Sullivan, executive vice president and director of the institutional asset management and custody division. Most significantly, he will have oversight of Amalgamated Bank’s “flagship Longview ULTRA Construction Loan Investment Fund and future real estate investment product development,” according to the Jan. 7 statement.

Freel was most recently a senior vice president at KeyBank, which is headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. There he was part of the asset recovery group, in charge of managing $305 million of KeyBank's nationwide commercial real estate loan workouts, dealing with investment funds sponsored by major real estate firms across a broad range of property and loan types.

"Jim has the right mix of experience for this environment and for the real estate recovery period that lies ahead," said O'Sullivan. "His extensive workout experience with KeyBank and Washington Mutual Bank gives us the leadership we need to deal with distressed loans in the LongView ULTRA Fund and to take advantage of dislocation in the current construction loan marketplace to recoup losses and add value for our institutional investor base."

Keith Pilkington, chief marketing officer at Amalgamated Bank, did not respond to requests seeking additional information, including if the position was newly created, by press time.

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