Ryan Iwasaka

Partner
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Biography

Ryan Iwasaka is a member of Greenberg Glusker’s Real Estate Group, bringing energy and applying an innovative approach to both his practice and the management of one of the firm’s founding departments.

Ryan’s involvement in the real estate industry naturally grew from being raised in Hawaii among a family filled with real estate developers and investors. His broad-based, business-focused counsel is a direct result of that upbringing and gives him a deeper and personal appreciation of his clients’ needs and objectives.

Practice

Ryan maintains a diverse practice across the primary real estate disciplines of acquisitions & sales, leasing, and finance. His experience covers a wide range of property categories, spanning commercial, retail, and industrial sites to residential, multi-family and raw land. Although he focuses on the California real estate market, Ryan regularly handles transactions throughout the United States, having closed deals in nearly every state, Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean.

Ryan routinely oversees many of the firm’s most complex and high-profile commercial transactions that often involve numerous parties, integrate simultaneously closing components, and require in-depth planning for the client’s short-term goals and long-range business objectives. For example, Ryan represented a developer in the purchase of a $120 million distressed loan portfolio that was secured by nearly $200 million in mixed-collateral assets. Concurrent with the acquisition, he assisted the client with the disposition of a portion of the assets, the restructuring of loans within the portfolio, the transition of development rights associated with the balance of the property, and the overall financing of the transaction.

Additional areas in Ryan’s practice include the sale or exchange of interests in corporations, LLCs, and partnerships that own or operate real estate assets, commercial loan restructuring, and the resolution of complex title and vesting defects. Ryan is also a member of the Climate Change & Sustainability practice group through which he advises clients on employing green technology and adopting environmentally responsible practices in their development and management of real estate assets. He is also a member of the firm’s Pacific Rim Practice Group, which coordinates a multi-discipline approach to representing both Asia-based companies and U.S. businesses doing work in the greater Pacific community.

Client Counsel

Ryan’s clients range from industrial, commercial, and residential developers, to global corporations, privately held companies, manufacturers, and real estate investment trusts, to individuals with entrepreneurial and family-owned property interests.

In addition to his work within the core of the industry, Ryan equally enjoys guiding non-real estate-focused clients through their property and business-related matters. For example, Ryan represents Public Media Group of Southern California, the operator of one of the nation’s largest public television stations (KCET), in its real estate matters, including the sale of its historic Hollywood studio lot, lease of a Class A office space located in Burbank, California, and the management and use of various broadcast and production facilities.  Ryan also represents Coast Packing Company, a closely held, family corporation in the food processing industry, in all of its business and real estate affairs, advising the company through the expansion and modernization of its operations. Ryan works closely with the clients and applies his intrinsic knowledge of legal and business issues to such deals, enabling them to navigate each transaction’s complexities and make the critical real estate decisions that will impact their operations for years to come.

Education, Awards and Community Involvement

Ryan is a graduate of Yale Law School. While obtaining his J.D., he concurrently received an M.A. in Political Science from the Yale University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. He was an editor of The Yale Law Journal for three years, holding the position of Articles Editor during his tenure.

Prior to attending Yale, Ryan studied at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar. He received his B.A. from Claremont McKenna College.

Ryan received the Outstanding Young Lawyer Award from the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Real Property Section Executive Committee in 2010 and was a member of the Section’s executive committee from 2011 to 2013. Ryan is also an active member of the International Council of Shopping Centers and the Asian Real Estate Association of America, Tri-Counties Southern California Chapter.

Working outside of the real estate industry, Ryan was president of the Japanese American Bar Association in 2018 and continues to serve on its Board of Governors.  He has also been a member of the Board of Governors for the Asian Pacific American Bar Association and an active member of the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association. He is also a member of the Association of American Rhodes Scholars and the Society for Science and the Public.  Ryan devotes much of his free time as a volunteer in the Crescenta Valley baseball community and recently established a program that will take local recreational league players to Cooperstown, New York, to play in a national tournament and visit the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Professional Affiliations

  • Japanese American Bar Association
    • Board of Governors, 2013 - present
    • President, 2018
    • Vice President, 2015-2017
    • Membership Committee Co-Chair, 2013-present
    • Member since 2009
  • International Council of Shopping Centers, Member, 2004-present
  • Asian Pacific American Bar Association
    • Board of Governors, 2014 - 2018
    • Member since 2013
  • Asian Real Estate Association of America, Tri-Counties Southern California Chapter, Member, 2011-present
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association, Real Estate Section, Executive Committee Member, 2011-2013; Los Angeles County Bar Association, Member, 2010-present
  • Society for Science & the Public, Member, 2010-present
  • Board of Governors, Claremont McKenna College Keck Institute of Strategic International Studies, 2006-2020
  • Association of American Rhodes Scholars, Member, 1994-present
  • Claremont McKenna College Alumni Association Giving Committee, Member, 2002-2004
  • Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Kim McLane Wardlaw, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Pasadena, California, 2000-2001

Awards

  • Listed, Best Lawyers in America - Real Estate Law, 2018- 2022
  • Outstanding Young Lawyer Award, Los Angeles County Bar Association, Real Property Section, 2010
  • Listed, Southern California Rising Stars, 2007-2012
  • Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Los Angeles, Pro Bono Service Award, 2017
  • Rhodes Scholarship, 1994

Bar Admissions

  • California

Education

  • Yale Law School  (J.D., 2000)
  • Yale Graduate School of Arts & Sciences  (M.A., 2002)
    • Political Science Department
  • Claremont McKenna College  (B.A., magna cum laude, 1994)
    • Phi Beta Kappa