Aaron Kotler

Aaron Kotler, widely considered the founder of the commercial office market in his hometown of Lakewood N.J., was affectionally called “The Other Mayor” by the Asbury Park Press. His leadership helped grow Lakewood from N.J.’s 20th municipality into its 5th largest, tripling its population from 45,000 to 135,000 residents, creating a vibrant economic and social community in central N.J.

His extensive experience covers all aspects of real estate, including ground up construction, development of raw land, acquisitions of industrial complexes, multifamily and office assets, and reuse projects, and he has been through the entire cycle of real estate from concept to completion many times.

His signature project is the Cedarbridge Corporate Park which he created, and which has developed over 2 million SF to date, and at completion will total 3 million SF of class A office, residential, and retail. He was part of the team that redeveloped the Bell Works project in Holmdel NJ, converting the former Bell Labs, then the largest empty office building in the United States, into a premier 2 million SF Class A office and retail destination. He likewise helped convert Fort Monmouth’s US Army Oceanport Hospital site into a mixed-use housing and commercial center.

Aaron served as president of Beth Medrash Govoha, Lakewood’s flagship college, for 26 years, which he transformed from a local school into a world class center for excellence, during which time he acquired four large campuses, and used his skills in real-estate acquisition, ground-up development, repositioning, financing, construction, leasing, and management to build a major endowment.

He founded NJ Hand, a not for profit which has constructed 455 low income, affordable homes, and he is a longtime Trustee at RWJBarnabas Health, the largest hospital network in New Jersey, serving on its Monmouth Medical Center board. He serves as Trustee of AcuteCare Health System; at Beacon Health; at NJ Reentry Corporation, which works to remove barriers to employment from those returning from incarceration; and other social benefit organizations. Aaron is the founder of the Lakewood Resource and Referral Center, a Social Service “One-Stop” that serves over 50,000 individuals a year; and of “Chemed” (the Center for Health, Education, Medicine, and Dentistry), a not-for-profit primary care center that sees over 300,000 patients a year; and of other social service agencies.