PGIM Real Estate, the $209.3 billion real estate investment and financing business of PGIM, the global investment management business of Prudential Financial, Inc. (NYSE: PRU), continues to strengthen its Agricultural Finance business, with new senior leadership appointments. Rachelle Schlesinger, who currently serves as chief credit officer, will take on an expanded role as head of Agricultural Finance. Additionally, Seth Palmer will take on a new role as head of originations.
Schlesinger joined PGIM Real Estate in 1998 and has more than 20 years of agricultural and timberland real estate experience. Most recently, she served as a Managing Director and chief credit officer for PGIM Real Estate's Agricultural Finance team, where she was responsible for managing the risk associated with the agricultural lending platform. Schlesinger will continue to report to Jess Jarratt, who is a Managing Director and head of Agricultural Finance & Investments.
Palmer joined PGIM Real Estate in 2015 and has over 20 years of investment origination and management experience in the timber and agricultural sectors. He most recently served as Executive Director with PGIM Real Estate's Agricultural Finance team, where he was responsible for timber and east coast originations. Palmer will report to Schlesinger in the new role. The existing regional originations team leads of Frank Oberti, Bill Beyer and John Nitz will report to Palmer, who will also retain his current direct reports in the Southeastern region and timberland.
PGIM Real Estate’s Agricultural Finance business has $7.5B in assets under management representing a broad range of farm and timberland properties in 37 states in the US, and a wide variety of loan products to meet clients’ unique development and expansion goals.
“I am proud to announce Rachelle’s and Seth’s appointments, as they continue to play important roles in helping our Agriculture financing business meet our long-term goals to expand our product offerings and deepen our strategic partnerships,” said Jarratt. “Our deep bench of talent has been instrumental to the business’ growth, and I am excited to continue building on our momentum and aligning the business for success in the years to come.”
This news comes on the heels of several recent new hires for the Agriculture financing team, including Howie Heckenlively, who joined as an Executive Director based in Omaha, Nebraska, and Clay Popko, who joined as an Executive Director based in Santa Rosa, California. Their hiring, and the appointments of Schlesinger and Palmer, were a direct result of the Agriculture financing business’ rapid growth over the past several years, increasing debt production between 2017 and 2021 at an annual rate of 35%.