Debbie Kern

Debbie Kern is the Managing Principal in Keyser Marston Associates' Berkeley office with over 30 years of experience in public / private real estate consulting. 

Key Role

Debbie brings to bear years of experience and strong technical skills to develop analytical methodologies, efficiently evaluate public/private real estate development issues, and provide state-of-the art solutions.

Areas of Specialization

Infrastructure and Public Facility Finance 

Debbie is a leader in the field of infrastructure finance.  She has developed effective financing plans for new facilities triggered by a proposed real estate development, rehabilitation of existing structures, citywide capital improvement plans, and specific plans.  Structures are often comprised of multiple funding sources, including: Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts (EIFDs), Community Facility Districts (CFDs), value-added entitlements, new markets tax credits, impact fees, and P3s.  She has unique experience establishing EIFDs having prepared the financing plan for the Rincon Hill IFD, which was the only IFD established in the State over the past decade.  She is currently preparing EIFD plans for Historic Pier 70 in San Francisco and large acreage developments in Placer County and Fresno.  

Fiscal and Economic Impacts

Debbie has evaluated the fiscal and economic impacts of a full-range of land uses, from residential to sports facilities.  The analyses have been undertaken within the context of processing development entitlements for specific projects and formulating land use policies.  Recent impact analyses include: Apple’s presence in Cupertino; the mixed-use entertainment district surrounding the future sports arena in Sacramento; the future Oakland Global Trade and Industry Center Project; and the development of 1,700 new homes in Dublin.  Debbie has used the findings of the analysis to recommend incentive packages to attract and retain businesses, metering requirements to balance the impacts of different land uses, and CFD maintenance obligations or developer exactions to mitigate negative impacts.

P3 and Public Benefits

Over the past 30 years Debbie has evaluated the development economics of hundreds of proposed projects, representing a full spectrum of land uses, including: residential, office, hotel, retail, entertainment, industrial, and numerous mixed-use developments.  The purpose of the evaluations is to determine the magnitude of public subsidy or development incentives that are needed to realize specific public benefits, such as the inclusion of non-profit arts space in a development, or affordable housing.

Affordable Housing

Debbie manages housing related services for KMA clients in San Francisco.  Services relate to both structuring business terms for the development of new affordable housing and formulating public policies for increasing the supply of affordable housing

Professional Credentials

Debbie holds a master’s degree in economics from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of California at Berkeley. She is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society.

Contact Debbie

email: | phone 415.398.3050