John Westerfield

Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Westerfield serves as Chief Executive Officer of Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. and is a member of MFA's Board of Directors. Mr. Westerfield was appointed CEO effective April 1, 2015 after serving as Senior Advisor to MFA's Board for more than 3 years. In that capacity, Mr. Westerfield worked closely with MFA's CEO and Board of Directors in providing strategic counsel regarding business planning, investment strategy, human resource allocation, business development and asset management for MFA's $4.5 billion US real estate portfolio. 

Prior to joining MFA, Mr. Westerfield formed a private real estate investment company, Braddock Capital Management, to manage investments in REIT securities and individual properties, including various office, industrial, multi-family rental and condominium development projects primarily in the New York area.

Previously, Mr. Westerfield joined Morgan Stanley in 1985 and was elected Managing Director in 1993. At Morgan Stanley, he served in numerous roles in the Fixed Income, Investment Banking and Investment Management areas of the firm, specializing in commercial real estate finance and investment. In his last 10 years at the firm, until 2008, Mr. Westerfield was global head of the firm's commercial mortgage finance business, managing a worldwide business of 300 employees with a balance sheet of approximately $30 billion. 

Mr. Westerfield received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1985 and an AB from Dartmouth College in 1981, where he majored in Government.

Kaoru Yamaoka


Mr. Yamaoka is responsible for strategic planning for growth initiatives in addition to evaluating asset management and property acquisition. Mr. Yamaoka joined Mitsui Fudosan Group (Tokyo) in 1988 and became Senior Vice President, Corporate Planning of Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2014. 

Mr. Yamaoka began his career at Mitsui Fudosan Group leading the Accounting and Finance Department's corporate debt financing. In 1993, he transitioned to the Office and Tenant Leasing Department, where he conducted marketing research and implemented the development of office tenant leasing. In 1998, Mr. Yamaoka was assigned to develop the prestigious 42-story, 2 million square foot mixed use office building, Shiodome City Center, with sovereign wealth funds. Upon successful completion of the project in 2003, Mr. Yamaoka transitioned to asset management and remained in that position until 2009. 

Mr. Yamaoka began honing his global management skills when he joined the International Department of Mitsui Fudosan Group in 2009. As the Executive Manager, Planning and Administration Group of the International Department, Mr. Yamaoka was responsible for the company's portfolio management in the US and Europe. 

Mr. Yamaoka received his Bachelor of Law from Keio University in Tokyo.

Ian J. Bentata

Senior Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Mr. Bentata is responsible for all aspects of the company's financial management, including financial planning and reporting, control, taxation and financing, as well as assisting with underwriting and due diligence for acquisitions. He also oversees human resources, information technology and administration. 

Prior to joining the company in 2001, Mr. Bentata spent seven years at Turner Construction International, an international construction and engineering firm, where he held the position of Chief Financial Officer and was responsible for all aspects of financial planning and control. Prior to that Mr. Bentata served as Group Controller for Abu Garcia, a multinational group of consumer products companies. 

Upon graduating university Mr. Bentata worked in the Stockholm, Sweden office of Price Waterhouse until 1985. He then transferred to Price Waterhouse's Morristown, New Jersey office. At Price Waterhouse Mr. Bentata was responsible for audit and consulting services in a variety of industries. 

Mr. Bentata graduated from Stockholm University, Sweden with a B.Sc. in Finance and Marketing and is a CPA. Professional affiliations include the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants and Financial Executives International.

Sean F. McSweeney

Senior Vice President, Acquisitions

Mr. McSweeney is responsible for overseeing the implementation of the company's US investment strategy, which includes sourcing new opportunities; monitoring, maintaining, and reviewing the acquisition transaction pipeline; and all phases of due diligence. 

During his tenure with the company he has held a variety of positions in the firm's acquisition, finance, and asset management groups. 

Upon graduation and until joining the company in 2001, Mr. McSweeney worked in the financial reporting group for a real estate syndication company focusing on Senior Living and multi-family apartments. 

Mr. McSweeney graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1996, with a B.B.A in Accountancy.

Christopher N. Perez

Senior Vice President, Asset Management & Leasing

Mr. Perez became Senior Vice President of Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in April 2008, and has been employed by MFA since 1988. Prior to his promotion in 2008, Mr. Perez had served as Vice President of Asset Management & Leasing and was responsible for leasing, property management, and asset management of the entire Mitsui Fudosan America commercial real estate portfolio. This included such recognizable properties in New York as 1251 Avenue of the Americas, 461 Fifth Avenue, 527 Madison Avenue, and 100 William Street, as well as 1090 Vermont Avenue, N.W. in Washington, D.C. 

During his tenure with MFA, Mr. Perez has held a variety of positions and has handled the asset management of commercial office properties nationwide. He has been directly responsible for leasing over 2 million square feet of commercial office and retail space. This includes notable transactions with Banco Santander, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Chubb, DLA Piper, J.P. Morgan Chase, Mizuho Corporate Bank, Paulson & Company, Sidley Austin, and Trust Company of the West. Mr. Perez also has spearheaded capital improvement programs that led to several prominent building awards, including the BOMA New York and BOMA International Award for Excellence in 1997 and 1998, and the International Real Estate Federation's Prix d'Excellence award in 1999. 

Prior to joining MFA, Mr. Perez was employed by Exxon Corporation in New York for seven years. Mr. Perez's career at Exxon was capped by his participation in the sale of the Exxon Building to Mitsui Fudosan in 1986 for $610 million, the highest price paid for a commercial office building at that time. 

Mr. Perez is a graduate of Pace University and the Pace University Graduate School of Business

Tatsu Imamura

Treasurer and Corporate Secretary

Mr. Imamura is responsible for corporate financing, cash management and corporate governance.  Mr. Imamura joined Mitsui Fudosan Group (Tokyo) in 1997 and was transferred to Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2013.

Prior to joining Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc., Mr. Imamura held various positions in Mitsui Fudosan Group (Tokyo), including working on the development of Tokyo Midtown and several residential development projects.

Mr. Imamura graduated from The University of Tokyo with a bachelor’s degree in Economics.

Takeshi Iwama

Vice President, Acquisitions

Mr. Iwama is responsible for acquisitions and residential development. He joined Mitsui Fudosan Group (Tokyo) in 1996, and became Vice President of Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2016.

Mr. Iwama has more than a decade of experience in acquisitions including residential, office, hospitality and golf courses.  Previously, Mr. Iwama spent approximately 10 years in Mitsui’s Financial and Accounting Department, including roles in corporate financial planning, financial analysis, taxation, and organizational restructuring. 

Mr. Iwama received his bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics from Waseda University.

Jeff Menard

Vice President, Acquisitions

Mr. Menard is responsible for Mitsui Fudosan America’s capital markets activities in the western United States.  He joined the company in 2007.  In 2013, he led the firm’s expansion efforts by relocating to California and opening a San Francisco office.  After three years in San Francisco, Mr. Menard returned to New York City where he continues to source new investment opportunities for the firm.

During his tenure at MFA, Mr. Menard’s additional responsibilities have included asset management, debt financing, and dispositions.  Prior to joining the company, Mr. Menard worked as both a mortgage broker and lender, primarily focused on distressed commercial and residential properties in the Tri-State area.

Mr. Menard graduated from Syracuse University in 2003 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting, and holds a Master of Science degree in Real Estate Investment & Finance from New York University.

Frank G. Montes

Vice President, Development & Operations

Mr. Montes is responsible for overseeing all development projects in the US, as well as capital improvements, property management, and sustainability. He also assists with underwriting and due diligence on acquisitions. Mr. Montes joined Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2007. 

With over 30 years' experience in real estate, Mr. Montes has worked in commercial and residential property management, facilities management, asset management, construction management, and historic preservation. 

Mr. Montes graduated from Columbia University with a Bachelor of Arts degree (magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa) and a Master of Science degree. He is a member of the Building Owners and Managers Association and the Construction Management Association of America.

Keith R. Purcell

Vice President, Asset Management & Leasing

Mr. Purcell is responsible for asset management, property management, development and leasing activities within the company's commercial real estate portfolio. He joined Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2013. 

Mr. Purcell has more than 15 years of experience managing commercial real estate investments in the US, Belgium, Brazil and Canada. Prior to joining MFA, Mr. Purcell was Vice President of Asset Management at L&L Holding Company, a privately held real estate firm that specializes in Manhattan office properties. Previously, Mr. Purcell held positions at GIC Real Estate (the real estate arm of The Government of Singapore Investment Corporation) and Fortress Investment Group. 

Mr. Purcell earned a BBA from Loyola University Maryland and received an MBA from the University of Delaware, where he was awarded the Chaplin Tyler Fellowship.

Masahiro Yaguchi

Senior Vice President, Asset Management & Leasing

Mr. Yaguchi is responsible for leasing and asset management of the company’s properties.  He joined Mitsui Fudosan Group (Tokyo) in 1991 and became Vice President of Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2013.

During his career with the company in Japan, he held a variety of positions in Office Building Development, Human Resources and the Nagoya Branch office. 

Mr. Yaguchi graduated from Waseda University in 1991 with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science.

Azeema Yasin

Vice President and Controller

Ms. Yasin is responsible for all of the company's financial and management accounting operations, planning and financial reporting, internal controls and taxation, as well as support of the corporate financial planning and analysis functions. 

Before joining Mitsui Fudosan America, Inc. in 2008, Ms. Yasin held the position of Controller with Deutsch, a manufacturer of mechanical connectors for defense, aerospace and other harsh environments. Ms. Yasin also worked for seven years in the medical device manufacturing industry with C.R Bard, Inc. in the position of corporate accounting manager, and at Cottet Optical, Inc. as the corporate controller. 

Ms. Yasin started her career in the hotel industry working for Forte Hotels/Le Meridien for over 10 years and she held several positions of increasing responsibility during her tenure there, some of which was spent overseas, mainly the Caribbean and United Kingdom. 

Ms. Yasin earned an M.Sc. In Taxation from Fairleigh Dickinson University, and a B.Sc. from Emile Woolfe College and is a fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.