Women & Business April 2017: Laura Wagner Aftosmis
Laura Wagner Aftosmis is co-owner of Revest Properties.
Laura Wagner Aftosmis
As a real estate developer, Laura Wagner Aftosmis has a hand in everything from planning, budgeting and interior design to marketing, tenant negotiations and capital improvements for a wide variety of properties.
“My job involves a lot of multitasking,” she says. “Every hour of every day is different depending on what project is being worked on.”
Aftosmis and her husband, Charles, own the real estate development and management firms Revest Properties, Northpointe Development Group and PTC Lodging, which specialize in hospitality, office, retail and residential properties. She is also the owner and operator of Sherwood Associates & Berkshire Associates, which handles more than 160 multi-family units; the office and retail centers of Greensburg Commerce Park; and Wagner Outdoor Advertising, which manages more than 30 billboards.
Both of Aftosmis’ parents worked in real estate development, and after graduating from college, Aftosmis joined them. After just a year, she started Revest Properties with her brother. While Aftosmis’ parents and brother have passed, she continues her family’s tradition in the industry.
“My mother, father and brother were my role models, and I strive to keep the organization strong and growing,” she says.
A key to doing so is finding the right sites to develop, which Aftosmis says “takes persistence and a lot of due diligence.” While this is challenging, it’s also her favorite aspect of her work.
“Having a vision of a project and seeing it through the many stages of development as it becomes a reality is what really is exciting. What was once an empty parcel of land may be the location of a new hotel, apartment complex, an office building or even a new billboard location.”
Aftosmis’ properties have earned numerous awards, and her hotels regularly win the industry’s top honors for customer service, cleanliness and quality. The hotels include Hampton Inns in Greensburg and Johnstown, a Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Southpointe and a Hotel Indigo that’s currently under construction in Southside.
Aftosmis’ advice for success is: “Find and pursue your passion. Stay focused on your goals. Keep a ‘Do what it takes’ attitude, and do everything with a purpose.”