Our Team

The GCA Equity Partners management team includes experienced real estate developers, lenders, and loan and fund servicers. Our team members enable Equipoise to make investments in premier real estate projects around the country.

Executive Team:

  • Tom Braegelmann – Chief Executive Officer
  • Chuck Tralka – Fund Manager
  • Alex Arriaga – Chief Development Officer
  • Robb Barr – Chief Operations Officer
  • Mark Ross – Executive VP, Underwriting & Risk Management

Investor Relations Managers:

  • Kelvin Chiu
  • Joji Manabe
  • Kimberley Wirht

Project Management:

  • Dean DeStefani
  • Brandon Braegelmann

Team Members

Tom BraegelmannPartner – Chief Executive Officer, GCA Equity Partners & Equipoise Capital

Thomas P. Braegelmann, CEO of both Equipoise Capital Partners and GCA Equity Partners; is an accomplished entrepreneur, fund manager and private lending mentor offering a wealth of experience and knowledge gained during his 30+ year career in real estate investing, commercial construction, land development and private lending.

As a Certified Fund Manager and founder of both companies, Tom is no stranger to thinking outside the box and has earned a reputation as a thought leader in his industry. Through careful investment analysis and strong focus on safety, as well as the development of the unique National Construction Lending Alliance™ program, Tom and partners have shown a consistent track record of delivering double digit returns to their investors on short-term, passive real estate investments.

With Tom’s leadership, and through the development of the National Construction Lending Alliance™ program, GCA participated in the funding of more than $100 million in real estate transactions nationwide in under 18 months.

As a native of Central Minnesota, Tom previously served as owner and CEO of a private real estate investment company, with a portfolio comprised of several hundred multi-family apartment units, residential and commercial complexes, and single-family homes.

With a passion for facilitating and teaching collaborative real estate investing, Tom donates his time and serves as a well-respected, highly sought after mentor and teacher for a group of more than 400 passive real estate investors around the country. He also founded and hosts a monthly REIA/Private Investment club with over 1600 members in the San Francisco Bay area. Tom is committed to giving back to the community and building sustainable cash flow for passive real estate investors.

Chuck TralkaPartner - Fund Manager, GCA Equity Partners

Chuck has 23 years of experience as a high-technology executive, having served in a variety of engineering and marketing management roles. Over the last twenty years he has been investing in various real estate projects, including owning investment property directly and through various real investment funds. This approach has allowed him to develop a strong sense of what investors are looking for and how best to deliver it.

He has a passion for helping investors achieve their financial goals through careful selection of the right investments, and in particular for helping people optimize returns for their own retirement accounts.

Chuck holds a degree in electrical engineering from the University of California, Davis. During his high-tech career he served in various technical and management roles at Altera Corporation, Aptix, Inc., QuickLogic Corporation and Xilinx, Inc.

Alex ArriagaPartner - Chief Development Officer, Equipoise Capital

Alex Arriaga is a business owner, fund manager and real estate investor who was born and raised in the island of Puerto Rico.

Alex moved to the United Stated and enrolled at Purdue University at the young age of 16 where he earned his degree in Engineering. Alex has a broad range of business, entrepreneurial and real estate experience, including management of technical, marketing, sales and operational organizations with multi-million dollar profit and loss responsibilities.

Alex spent the first years of his career working for IBM, a top ranked national technology company specializing in international software implementations. After working at IBM, Alex founded a business intelligence software consulting firm working primarily in the Southeast United States which he later sold in order to dedicate his career fully to real estate and private lending.

He began his Real Estate journey at the age of 21 when he purchased income producing real estate without any professional training. Those first creative transactions helped assure him that the realm of real estate was going to be the major focus of his upcoming years. After his first couple of years of investing in different areas of residential and commercial real estate, he moved onto land development where he completed multimillion-dollar projects in the South East United States.

Alex is an expert in the investment areas of residential real estate, land development, commercial real estate, creative finance, raising capital, multifamily, property management, international investment and private money lending. He has invested in many markets in the US, Puerto Rico and China.

Alex’s analytical background in engineering and international experience has proven to be a solid foundation since the beginning of his own real estate investing company in 2001.

Currently Alex is involved in manufacturing, real estate and financing projects from the financial standpoint to the day-to-day development planning and execution. Alex is a resident of the beautiful Caribbean island of Puerto Rico and he also calls North Carolina his second home. He has personally mentored investors across the US, Latin America and China in the business of real estate investing and private lending.

When Alex is in non-business mode he enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities, including surfing, snowboarding and rock climbing.

Robb BarrChief Operations Officer

Robert served with the U.S. Navy as a Cryptologist and was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal in 1991. Having worked in several critical positions, Robert left the Navy with the goal of taking his wealth of international experience and objective analytical skills to the private.

With over 15 years of business and finance experience, Robert has held positions ranging from Owner, CFO, CEO, and Financial Advisor. As a Financial Advisor Robert successfully managed million dollar fixed income portfolios during the height of the financial crisis.

Mark RossExecutive VP, Underwriting & Risk Management

With 43 years experience in the mortgage industry, Mark is the perfect fit for Underwriting & Risk Mitigation at Equipoise Capital Partners. Our team believes that by successfully recognizing both the strengths and weaknesses we each possess, we have all found our perfect position on this team to better assist our clients.

Mark has experience in running his own company for over 26 years, focusing on conventional, commercial and private money lending (and the sale of existing paper), managing warehouse lines of credit, multiple loan originators, underwriting private money loans, and originating commercial and agency loans. He has a large investor base that have followed him over the years, and an equally large borrower prospect and referral base.

Mark was asked to collaborate in writing the original Arizona Mortgage Broker law, and therefor understands federal and state laws in depth. He was previously the editor of a statewide mortgage publication and hosted a radio show for 5 years. From an industry perspective, Mark has been selected as one of five members of the Arizona Mortgage Brokers Testing Committee, responsible for writing and updating the Arizona Mortgage Loan Originator licensing test, and continues to teach licensing and renewal classes for loan originators.

At the end of the day, we at Equipoise understand that people do business with and refer business to people they know and trust. We aren’t looking to make “business deals”. We are looking to make business relationships, because relationships last. Both our investment and lending projects open the door to multiple repeat opportunities.

Kelvin ChiuSenior VP, Investment Relations Manager

Kelvin has an extensive background in IT and business management, and has spent the majority of his career in New York City, Tokyo, and Japan. Having served various management and consultant roles at Wall Street institutions such as Goldman Sachs, KBC Bank, Citigroup, Reuters, JP Morgan Chase as well as Chief Technology Officer at one of the largest stock exchanges in Japan – SBI Japannext; makes Kelvin a true asset in finding opportunities in and outside of the United States for Equipoise Capital Partners.

Kelvin is also a private lender and a real estate investor with experience in stocks, stock options, commodity and Forex trading. He holds a masters degree in Computer Science from New York University, a bachelor degree from National Taiwan University and a Series 3 Commodity Representative license.

Kelvin is a FAA certified private pilot, certified open water scuba diver, and also served as lieutenant in the Army of Taiwan.

At the end of the day, we at Equipoise understand that people do business with and refer business to people they know and trust. We aren’t looking to make “business deals”. We are looking to make business relationships, because relationships last. Both our investment and lending projects open the door to multiple repeat opportunities.

Joji ManabeSenior VP, Investor Relations Manager

Joji is not only a CPA, but also an entrepreneur and business consultant. He brings ten years of financial advisory and executive leadership experience in a variety of industries to the Equipoise Capital Partners Team. A former Senior Manager in assurance and advisory business services at Ernst & Young, one of the world’s leading professional services organizations. He has worked on numerous public and private companies in their regulatory filings and financial analysis and played a key role in helping companies work through the details of a variety of corporate transactions.

Joji is also experienced in real estate investing. He has been involved in and completed several acquisitions, renovations and financing of single family homes and multi-unit properties. His attention to detail, ability to read complex financial figures as well as an exceptional interpersonal skill has ensured the success of each project he has been involved in.

Joji is truly passionate about business consulting, strategy and financial modeling and has a genuine interest in helping others. He is also fluent in Japanese.

At the end of the day, we at Equipoise understand that people do business with and refer business to people they know and trust. We aren’t looking to make “business deals”. We are looking to make business relationships, because relationships last. Both our investment and lending projects open the door to multiple repeat opportunities.

Kimberley WirhtInvestor Relations Manager

“I believe that understanding the needs of the community we serve is the lifeblood of our business. By passing along our successes and by educating busy professionals and retirees they too can make solid informed decisions for achieving wealth via passive income objectives. We celebrate our individual differences, cultures and traditions, and communicate in the language that speaks to their head and heart; key to those connections.

Creating multiple streams of passive income has allowed my family the financial freedom and time to travel and spend time in fun, productive pursuits with more prosperity than at any other time in our lives.”

Since graduating from San Jose State University’s Engineering program, Kimberley has invested in multiple residential and commercial real estate projects. She retired early from the aviation & aerospace industry working first as a commercial pilot then aviation consultant for the State of California and as airport director for several regional airports.

Kim began her private lending business in 2012 and recently joined Equipoise Capital Partners, LLC, in Campbell, CA. With a strong passion for developing solid, collaborative, long lasting relationships between passive real estate investors and active real estate developers Kim has played a key role in completing multiple mutually beneficial, sustainable and profitable real estate projects that otherwise would not have been possible through traditional financing.

Dean DeStefaniVP of Lending Services

Dean brings a rich experience in orchestrating real estate transactions, not only having worked with investors, but also real estate investing himself in various capacities. His ability to understand both the creative structuring of deals and the requirements for compliance allow him to assist with putting together the rehab loans and facilitating take-out loans for investors. Dean has strong connections with many private lenders which allows him to offer great financing options for both investors and home-owners alike, increasing the ease of the payoff of our short term loans. Dean holds both the California Bureau of Real Estate (01124971) and NMLS licenses (874935).

Brandon BraegelmannField Manager, Equipoise Capital

Field Manager at Equipoise International Partners, LLC, and a licensed Real Estate Broker with a background in construction and project management, has carried out several successful real estate projects in Puerto Rico.

Brandon is a full-time resident of Puerto Rico with fluency in Spanish, and coordinates the day-to-day project management of Equipoise International’s real estate construction projects, as well as the marketing and sale of Equipoise’s projects. Brandon also is responsible for working with local borrowers in construction control.

Contact Us - We would love to meet you!

Pheasant Ridge – April 2017

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