05 Feb Dedicated Development Article
Article In: The Arizona Business Gazette
Author: Georgann Yara
Date: February 5, 2015
While studying for the Law School Admission Test, Irene Clary took a summer job for a developer in her native Toronto. However, passing the exam quickly became a non-issue when Clary found her calling in what was supposed to be a temporary gig. For one of her first tasks, Clary was given a set of plans for a hotel that was going to be built an asked for feedback.
“They liked the ideas,” she said. “They said, “You have a knack for this.” Clary was 23 at the time and had just graduated from the University of Toronto with her bachelor’s degree in political science.
This seal of approval led to projects with progressively larger developers, forming her own consulting agency in Canada and ultimately in her starting the Scottsdale firm Catclar Investments in 2003. The company name is a fusion of her married name and her maiden name, Catsibris.
When Catclar first started, Clary would work on two projects at a time, she said. Currently she juggles about four. The diverse jobs, tasks, and experience in commercial, residential and industrial real estate gave Clary a large skills set.
This became an asset. When she could easily send a staff member to a council meeting for a procedural zoning approval or a quick meeting with a designer, Clary chooses to do it herself. She credited Catclar’s success to this hands-on approach from the first step to the final touches on each project.
“I’m a small business owner and I like that because it gives me the ability to be involved in all facets,” she said. “When I hand over a townhouse to a buyer, I have to make sure it’s a good, solid project.”