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Laura O'Brien Headshot

Laura O'Brien

Executive Vice President, Operational Excellence, Advisory Services

Professional Experience

Laura’s role is focused on Operational Excellence for CBRE’s Advisory Services reporting to Jack Durburg, CBRE’s Global Chief Operating Officer. She works closely with CBRE’s Line of Business leaders as they develop and refine their go-to-market strategies with a focus on ensuring their products are market leading and differentiated, and that they deliver outcomes for our clients they cannot get elsewhere.  She also works closely with CBRE’s local markets to ensure that our differentiated products are delivered in the geographies at the point of impact with our professionals and clients. Her areas of responsibility include operationalizing Line of Business strategy, enabling technology adoption, deploying sales training, overseeing sales management and analytics, and implementing strategic initiatives.  

Laura has held several previous global leadership positions at CBRE including Client Care, Human Resources and Corporate Facilities. When she led Human Resources, Laura was responsible for launching EMPOWER, CBRE’s formal mentorship program. When she had responsibility for Corporate Facilities she oversaw the introduction of CBRE’s alternative workplace strategy, Workplace360, which now is deployed at more than 50 offices worldwide.

Laura is a member of the company’s Global Operating Committee.

Prior to these roles, Laura spent nearly thirty years as a sales professional. She began her brokerage career in agency leasing, transitioning into tenant representation and finally into corporate services. When she joined CBRE in 1991 she became an account manager for occupier clients with global real estate portfolios. Her account teams provided transaction management, project management, facilities management and portfolio management services to these multi-national companies.

Before joining CBRE, Laura worked for a boutique real estate company that specialized in commercial brokerage services, property management, appraisal, construction management and development services. 


  • Wall Street Journal, 1999 – "New Breed of Broker"
  • Los Angeles Times, Living Section, 2001 – "Air Com"
  • Good Morning America, 2001 – "The Long Commute"
  • Los Angeles Times, 2001 – "Back in the Air"
  • Southwest Airlines Spirit Magazine, 2001 – "Freedom"
  • CBRE Colbert Coldwell Circle, 2000 & 2001
  • CBRE Benjamin Arthur Banker, 2003 & 2006 – "Educational Excellence Award"
  • CBRE 2006 & 2008 - "Manager Innovation Award"
  • CBRE Women’s Network, 2009 – "Endurance of Spirit Award"

  • California State University at Northridge, Bachelor of Science in Finance and Management.
  • University of Southern California, MBA in Finance.

Laura O'Brien Executive Vice President, Operational Excellence, Advisory Services
Laura O'Brien Executive Vice President, Operational Excellence, Advisory Services