Marilyn Lissner

Executive Director

Cushman & Wakefield


Real Estate

Member since:


Membership Type:



Marilyn Lissner is an innovative and influential leader at Cushman & Wakefield (C&W), serving as Executive Director of Brokerage. She has established herself as a pillar of the real estate community with 40+ years of experience, of which 34 have been with C&W.

Marilyn has achieved a successful track record of advising her clients regarding high-level strategic planning, negotiation and implementation of real estate transactions, as well as corporate advisory and portfolio management solutions in the greater Chicago area as well as globally. Within the past 2 years, she has sold over $60 million of properties and executed transactions with a lease value of well over $100 million. As the lead real estate account manager for several corporations with portfolios in excess of ten million square feet, her advice and expertise combined with the wealth of C&W’s corporate talent and resources has resulted in over 600 lease and sales transactions with a value of over $5 billion.

Further, she has contributed significantly to the growth and prestige of women in the commercial real estate industry. Marilyn has dedicated extensive time to improving the commercial real estate industry for women. As one of the founding members of CREW’s Chicago Chapter, an active member of the Chicago Network and the International Women’s Forum, Marilyn has worked to break down barriers and empower women.



CREW (Chicago Real Estate Executive Women Founder and President)

Demonstrated leadership initiative as one of the founders of the first real estate women’s network organization in 1987 dedicated to the support, education and career advancement of women in the commercial real estate industry. Was one of the original board members and President having served a two-year term in 1990-1991.

NN CREW (National Network)

Was instrumental in the formation of the National Network that consists of 12,000 women and served as one of its first delegates.

COLBA (Chicago Office Leasing Broker’s Association)

THE CHICAGO NETWORK Chicago’s most distinguished professional women’s network of over 400 women and have served on numerous committees including WIFL (Women in the Forefront luncheon), Engagement Committee and Future Leaders (career mentoring program for girls).


THE EXECUTIVE CLUB   Was a member of a leading business and industry organization and part of a mentor program to develop future leaders.

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S FORUM is a Global Women’s organization of over 7,000 senior women leaders. Marilyn was a Chicago Board Member for 7 years. She served as Membership Chair and Hospitality Chair for the 2016 IWF Chicago World Leadership Conference of over 1000 attendees.

UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS (UIC) Real Estate Advisory Board Member

Participated in creating a viable market plan for the board.

CUSHMAN AND WAKEFIELD Executive Advisory Leadership Council

Reviewed and set corporate policy for the firm.

CUSHMAN AND WAKEFIELD Chicago Executive Committee

Advised the Chicago area manager on a number of issues, including market trends, procedures and policy.

CUSHMAN AND WAKEFIELD –Strategic Development Committee

Was on the committee that set policy and direction for the company offices in Chicago during the previous challenging economic environment


COMMUNITY SERVICE (Currently active or has supported)

Blessings in a Backpack Advisory Council

The organization feeds 95,000 food deprived children every weekend.

Chicago United Leadership Council Member

For 50 years, Chicago United has maintained the dialogue among multiracial senior leadership driving corporate and minority-owned businesses, civic and non-profit leadership in the common goal of creating a stronger social and economic climate for all races. Marilyn recently received the Chicago United Ambassador Honorable Mention Award.

Girl Scouts Camp CEO Leadership Program

Was a volunteer for six years involved in a camp environment leadership development and mentoring experience for teen Girl Scouts. Continues to mentor a Girl Scout from her first camp experience in 2007 who received a full scholarship at Cardinal Stritch College and Harvard Divinity School Master’s Program. After graduation, she was offered and accepted a position as Chaplain at Tufts University Hospital.

Girl Scout Honor Circle Breakfast Committee and Table Host

Girl Scouts/CREW Career Day

Volunteer and presenter for three years in a real estate learning and development experience for Girl Scouts.

Chicago Foundation for Women -Table Host

Women Employed-Table Host

United Cerebral Palsy of Greater Chicago

Board Member and President of the Women’s Board.

Temple Jeremiah

Board Member and held numerous leadership positions.

Menttium (Women Leadership Mentoring Organization)

Participated in a mentor program and currently mentors a woman in management at a major corporation on an ongoing basis.



Local newspapers quote her regularly, such as The Chicago Tribune and Crain’s Chicago Business, along with trade magazines such as Illinois Real Estate Journal, where she was featured. She has been a speaker at industry seminars, conferences and meetings, discussing national and local office market trends including:

Downtown Office Market RealShare Conference Panel

Young Entrepreneurs’ Forum

East/West Suburban Corridor RealShare Conference Panel

Mortgage Bankers Conference Speaker

The Appraisal Institute Speaker

Naperville Chamber of Commerce Panel

Girl Scouts- Gold Award Keynote Speaker

CREW Convention Real Estate Market Trends Panel

CREW Commercial Real Estate Executive Women Leadership Panel

Cushman and Wakefield Achievement Conference Panel

Cushman and Wakefield Broker Symposium Moderator

Cushman and Wakefield Research Conference Speaker

Mt. Assisi Academy Graduating Class Women Leadership Panel

CREW “Greening of Leases” Panel

IREM (Institute of Real Estate Management) Market Trends Panel



2020      CREW Industry Leadership Award

2019      Crain’s Notable Women in Real Estate

2014      Bisnow Power Women of Influence in Commercial Real Estate Award

2012      Midwest RE News Hall of Fame Award

2011      Illinois Real Estate Journal –Career Achievement Award

2009      Cushman & Wakefield Chicago Region Top Producer

2008      Illinois Real Estate Journal Nominee – Career Achievement Award,

Illinois Real Estate Journal – People News Feature Article and

Cushman & Wakefield – Chicago Region Top Producer

2007      Cushman & Wakefield – Special Recognition Award

2006      Cushman & Wakefield – Chicago Region #1 Producer

2005      Cushman & Wakefield – Service Excellence Award

2004      NAIOP – Suburban Office Transaction of the Year

2003      Cushman & Wakefield – Service Excellence Award

2003      NAIOP – Build-To-Suit Transaction of the Year Award

2001      NAIOP – Industrial Transaction of the Year Award nominee

2000      NAIOP – Office Transaction of the Year Award nominee

1999      NAIOP – Office Transaction of the Year Award winner

1997      NAIOP – Office Transaction of the Year Award nominee

1997      Crain’s Chicago Commercial Real Estate Awards – Office Tenant Rep nominee

1995      Crain’s Chicago Commercial Real Estate Awards- Office Tenant Rep Award

The Chicago Network