In 1993, Womble Carlyle attorney Carolyln Wilson decided to attend her first Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) Atlanta meeting. She was (and is) a commercial real estate attorney, and CREW Atlanta is a vibrant network for commercial real estate professionals, so she thought it would be a good fit.

“It seemed like a good opportunity to get some traction in commercial real estate circles, and to get to know brokers and appraisers in this arena,” she said.

What Wilson didn’t know at the time was that CREW would become a vital part of her professional life for the next 22 years. So much so that Wilson has been named a member of the CREW Atlanta Hall of Fame’s inaugural class.

Wilson is one of six members of the 2015 CREW Atlanta Hall of Fame Class. All six members are former CREW Atlanta Presidents and have long track records of service to the organization and its goals of helping women succeed in commercial real estate-related careers.

In Wilson’s case, she served as CREW Atlanta President in 1998-99. She also has served as CREW Atlanta’s delegate to the national organization. In addition, she has served in a variety of other leadership and committee roles for CREW Atlanta during the past two decades. Last year, she completed the year-long Leadership CREW program.

“I attended my first CREW National Meeting in 1994,” Wilson said. “I’ve only missed one since—and that was for a client closing.”

While CREW certainly has benefitted from Wilson’s engagement and leadership, she said she and her clients also have gained a great deal from CREW. Wilson said CREW is a great network of commercial real estate professionals—not just attorneys, but contractors, developers, bankers, land use/zoning professionals, tax advisors, environmental consultants and many others. Wilson has been able to connect her clients with other CREW members who can benefit their businesses. Through CREW, she has built a national referral network.

“For example, if one of my clients needs a commercial real estate attorney in Arizona, I can connect the client with a colleague from CREW,” she said.

Carolyn Wilson has more than 30 years of experience in the Atlanta market guiding clients in both commercial lending and commercial real estate transactions. In the field of commercial lending, Wilson has experience in all aspects of secured lending, and she advises banks and institutional lenders on structuring loans and assessing alternatives that protect a lender. In the real estate arena, she is involved in all aspects of a project’s development, including negotiating purchase and sale agreements, coordinating due diligence inquiries and preparing and reviewing documentation typically involved in real estate acquisitions.