Mitch Bonanno is a real estate professional and thought leader with over 30 years of diverse leadership experience in community placemaking, value-add real estate successes, and strategic initiatives. His commitment to innovative win-win solutions, effective team dynamics, and solid real estate fundamentals has led to a remarkable track record of achievements, driving value and positive change from complex opportunities.
Mr. Bonanno’s career encompasses a wide range of leadership roles within prominent organizations, strategic projects, and initiatives, spanning various product types and locations. With expertise in strategic, business, and technical aspects of project development, Mr. Bonanno has adeptly managed development teams, intricate deal structures including P3 arrangements, and technically demanding projects, ensuring successful outcomes while fostering strong team dynamics and relationships—both internally and with business partners, government officials, and local communities.
Currently serving as the first Vice President and Chief Real Estate Officer for Johns Hopkins University and Medicine, Mr. Bonanno has now dedicated his career to the mission of Johns Hopkins. Collaborating closely with executive leadership, financial management, facilities, and economic development functions, Mr. Bonanno is responsible guiding the strategic direction of real estate strategy and execution. The Real Estate Team oversees a significant portfolio of off-campus assets, manages all third-party leasing for the Johns Hopkins enterprise, handles asset management for off-campus properties, asset acquisitions/dispositions, ground leases, real estate partnerships, and new off-campus developments.
Before joining Johns Hopkins, Mr. Bonanno served as the Senior Vice President and Director of Development for Vornado/Charles E. Smith (now JBG Smith), leading the Washington, DC regional development team. Notable accomplishments include successfully deploying over $3 billion for significant land and portfolio acquisitions, delivering more than 2.5 million square feet of new development and revitalized office assets, creating 1,463 new residential units, and establishing a future development pipeline that exceeded twice that amount. Mr. Bonanno also spearheaded Vornado’s largest and most intricate strategic initiative in the region—redefining the vision for National Landing (formerly known as Crystal City) and the eight million square foot Crystal City portfolio. This comprehensive vision encompassed a mix of commercial asset classes, including office, multifamily, retail/restaurants, hotel, public community spaces, and transportation, all while making a positive impact on the community. This initiative also involved acquiring and rezoning/entitling the land that now hosts Amazon HQ2.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Bonanno held the role of Development Executive at Clark Real Estate Advisors and was a partner at the boutique real estate firm Crimson Partners. He gained initial insights into the industry from the ground up, commencing his career at Clark Construction/George Hyman Construction, where he worked in various capacities, including intern, field engineer, office engineer, estimator, and project manager.
Mr. Bonanno is an active member of the Urban Land Institute, the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties, Leadership Greater Washington, the Johns Hopkins University Real Estate Forum, and the Washington Real Estate Group. He holds a Master of Science in Real Estate from Johns Hopkins University, as well as Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in civil engineering from the University of Maryland College Park. Additionally, Mr. Bonanno serves on the Board of the Northern Virginia Conservation Trust, and previously held the position of Board Chair of the Crystal City Business Improvement District.