From premier art gallery founder to Commercial Real Estate leader

March 31, 2022

Sadhvi Subramanian’s unique career path brings her to U.S. Bank to lead the CRE East region.

Sadhvi Subramanian has big plans for growing U.S. Bank's commercial real estate presence in the East region, which stretches from Massachusetts to Florida (with the exception of Manhattan, Philadelphia, and NJ). Subramanian joined the bank in October 2021 and is excited about the opportunity to build a team and a portfolio at a bank with creditworthiness ratings among the highest in the world.

 “U.S. Bank is very well known in the western United States and less known in the east,” she said, “I plan to strengthen existing relationships with our clients by reinforcing U.S. Bank’s outstanding reputation, strong financial position and collaborative culture.”

Subramanian wasn’t always interested in commercial real estate. Her career began where she grew up in Delhi, India, as the Founder and CEO of the Center for Contemporary Art. She led a team that established it as one of the premier art galleries in the country and represented some of the top Indian contemporary artists. Sadhvi helped redefine Indian contemporary art sales with innovative ideas such as leasing art to multinational corporations and opening a restaurant below the gallery to make it a destination for visitors. She interacted with highly creative individuals, the business world, and the media to build and maintain a successful enterprise.

Subramanian moved to the U.S. to join her husband, a doctor, in St. Louis. She began working with the curator of Asian Art at the St. Louis Art Museum, and after a while, realized she wanted to widen her employment opportunities in the United States. She went to business school at Washington University, obtained her MBA in Finance and took the CPA exam, which led to working at an investment bank. After she moved to the Washington, D.C. area, Subramanian joined a large, locally based bank as a CRE lender, and stayed for 20 years building their CRE business in Boston, D.C. and the mid-Atlantic region.

Subramanian understood the importance of building a network in the U.S. early on. “I was lucky to have a manager who always advocated for me and pushed me to get out of my comfort zone. Working with him reinforced the significance of finding sponsors and growing my network.” Subramanian began reaching out and making connections with people, many of whom took her under their wing and gave her meaningful advice.

“I was given valuable guidance in getting my banking career off the ground, and I want to continue to pay it forward to help others understand the importance of navigating a corporate environment.”

To accomplish this, Subramanian is heavily involved in the Urban Land Institute, Economic Club, Federal City Council and many other industry and charitable organizations. She uses her passion to develop mentorship and growth opportunities for professionals of all experience levels. Her background of living and working in a different culture and country also adds to the diverse thought she brings to the table when creating these opportunities. Over the years, her efforts have been recognized on multiple occasions, including Washington D.C.’s 25 Most Powerful Real Estate Players in the Commercial Observer for 2020 and 2021, the 2020 Career Advancement for Women Impact Award from Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Network, as well as 2021 Women Who Mean Business in the Washington Business Journal.

Rex Rudy, head of commercial real estate at U.S. Bank, said, “Sadhvi’s extensive knowledge is a tremendous asset to any company looking to expand or solidify its CRE businesses, and we’re excited she chose to join our team.”

While the art world introduced Sadhvi to marketing, communications, and is where she developed her business acumen, she believes commercial real estate has provided valuable skills and experience and is a great path for her. “When my professional career began in India, I never imagined eventually working in commercial real estate. However, the support I have received from the industry, the challenges that make my job interesting, and the ability to grow the business at U.S. Bank make me feel like this is where I was meant to be.”  

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