Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Since founding TPCO in 1987, Donna Preiss has been an innovative pioneer in student housing, spearheading the creation of award-winning, cutting-edge practices in development, financing, technology, operations and marketing. Today, TPCO serves some 50 College markets from coast-to-coast and has ranked as one of the nation’s largest privately-held, student housing owner/operators for more than a decade. TPCO is the largest provider of off campus student housing in North Carolina.
TPCO partners with a wide array of domestic and international institutional investors located on three continents. The company has completed more than $1.5 billion in transactions over the past three years.
As an operator for its own account and as third-party management company, TPCO properties consistently are rated in the top tier of their respective markets by students and their parents. Over the company’s 30-year history, TPCO has established a wide range of best practices that have become industry standards.
An inventive trend-setter, tempered by her hands-on experience in all phases of student housing, Preiss is a highly sought-after speaker and has represented the industry at conferences worldwide.
She is a member of the NAA National Student Housing Committee and the NMHC National Student Housing Committee. Preiss currently serves on the Executive Committee of the NMHC, the Board of Advisors for the UNC Wood Center for Real Estate Services and the Board of Trustees for Ravenscroft School, and is active in a wide array of charities. She is also a 2018 recipient of one of Triangle Business Journal's CEO of the Year Awards.
Preiss received a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a M.A. from the University of Maryland.
Principal Kirk Preiss provides decision-making authority on behalf of TPCO as well as the oversight of both property and corporate level technology aspects. As a 20-plus-year real estate veteran, he has helped grow the company to its current portfolio size of 26,500 beds.
Prior to joining TPCO, Preiss held an executive position in technology at IBM responsible for networking standards. He was heavily involved in the LAN and Internet movement of the 80s and 90s, producing a variety of patents and leading international standards in technology, nuclear construction and space exploration.
Preiss received a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, a Master of Science in Mathematics from George Mason University and an MBA from Duke University. In 2002, he was appointed by Governor Mike Easley to the North Carolina Science and Technology Board. He is an Accredited Residential Manager (ARM) through the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) and holds a Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) designation.
Chief Operating Officer
Adam Byrley joined The Preiss Company in 2003 and serves as the company’s Chief Operating Officer. Byrley oversees TPCO’s overall operations, with responsibility for its portfolio of both owned and third-party managed student housing properties. Other key aspects of his position include analyzing new markets for expansion, working alongside New Business Development Team to set rents, lead due diligence teams and providing income and operating expense analytics for development and acquisition opportunities.
Prior to his current position, Byrley was Executive Vice-President of TPCO’s property management division, with day-to-day management responsibility for half of the company’s portfolio of student housing projects. During his tenure, he has overseen both leasing and marketing efforts as well as worked in conjunction with Regional Managers to develop rental strategies, administer rental rate changes, manage leasing velocity and implement marketing strategies.
Byrley received his undergraduate degree from Clemson University cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science.
Chief Investment Officer
As Chief Investment Officer, Preiss is responsible for overseeing all of TPCO's investments and joint ventures.
Over the course of nearly two decades with the company, Preiss has held a series of increasingly responsible roles including broker and Vice President and Executive Vice President of New Business Development. He has successfully sourced more than $900 million in debt and equity during his tenure.
Preiss earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from College of Charleston. He currently serves on the board of directors and executive committee for the National Multi-Housing Council (NMHC). Additionally, Preiss holds a CCIM accreditation and sits on the University Council for ULI.
Chief Acquisitions & Development Officer
Folckemer’s role as Chief Acquisitions & Development Officer includes all acquisitions and ground-up development as well as substantial upgrades and renovations of both new and existing assets. Her responsibilities also include establishing and maintaining new and existing joint venture partnerships and sourcing all debt. Susan brings over 35 years of development, construction, operations, new business development and investment sales experience to the TPCO team.
Prior to joining TPCO 15 years ago, Folckemer served as a Regional Senior Director with CB Richard Ellis, covering the Carolinas and the Mid-Atlantic region. During her time with CBRE, she oversaw the investment sales, leasing, management and financial reporting for a 27 million square-foot portfolio of office, retail and industrial product representing large pension funds and private equity groups. She began her career in 1983 working with a regional development and construction company focused on office, retail and industrial sites throughout the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic regions.
Folckemer received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business at North Carolina Wesleyan. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the National Multi-Family Housing Council (NMHC) and is actively involved in the Triangle Commercial Association of Realtors (TCAR), Urban Land Institute (ULI) and National Apartment Association (NAA) and Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW).
Chief Accounting Officer
Chad West joined The Preiss Company in 2012 and serves as the chief accounting officer. He is responsible for accounting, financial reporting and tax compliance and also directs the treasury management function and the company’s internal controls.
Prior to joining TPCO, he worked with PricewaterhouseCoopers for 7 years as an Audit Manager serving construction, manufacturing and real estate clients. He also served as Controller for several private companies, primarily in the construction industry.
In 1997 West graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island. He also holds a Certified Public Accountant license in both Connecticut and North Carolina.
Executive Vice President of Property Management
DeWana joined the company in 2008 and oversees 3 regional managers with responsibility for roughly half of TPCO’s portfolio, including day-to-day student housing operations oversight. Since joining the company, she has helped to develop a scalable platform that has enabled the company to grow over the last several years.
A 28-year apartment industry veteran, Falks previously served as a Regional Manager for Campus Advantage, where she operated a portfolio of seven on and off-campus student-housing communities comprised of 6,000 beds. She has held a variety of increasingly important positions within the industry, including Regional Manager for both Stokes-McCaleb and Place Properties.
Vice President of Property Management
Sara joined The Preiss Company in 2003 and serves as the Vice President of Property Management. She oversees 4 Regional Managers and the operations of roughly half of TPCO’s portfolio.
Prior to her current role, Sara held a wide range of positions within TPCO including Property Manager, Area Manager and Regional Manager. Prior to joining the company, she worked in the conventional property management sector as a Property Manager and Trainer with Equity Residential.
Sara earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Housing and Interior Design with a concentration in Property Management from Virginia Tech. She also holds a Certified Apartment Manager designation.
Vice President of Information Technology
Brian Reid joined The Preiss Company in 2007 after spending the 10 years in the cellular mobility and telecommunication industries. As Vice President of Information Technology, Brian is responsible the development and management of the IT systems, policy and strategy for the company. His responsibilities also include bulk data and video service management, contract negotiation, infrastructure consulting, and advising Preiss Company clients on the best technology solutions for their properties. In addition, Brian oversees all day-to-day technology support for the company, including both at the corporate and property levels with over 500 employees. Brian also works closely with the New Business Development and Construction Management teams on company acquisitions and development projects.
Brian graduated from NC State University.
Vice President of Business Development
David Leake joined the New Business Development Team in 2009, and has been part of The Preiss Company since 2000. David is responsible for assisting in the growth of new business. He helps bring on new Acquisitions, Developments, and Property Managements in the Student Housing Sector. He also plays a huge role in the market studies and the due diligence process with new potential properties. David has been on all sides of the Student housing real-estate spectrum including: Real-Estate Broker, Acquisition and Development, Leasing Agent, Property Manager, Project Manager, Construction Management.
David graduated from Appalachian State University. He is an active member of the NC Real Estate Commission.
Executive Vice President of Construction Management
Barger joined the company a decade ago as head of Construction Management Services. In his role as Executive Vice President of Construction Management, he oversees all capital improvement projects for TPCO’s portfolio.
While with TPCO, Barger has provided a variety of services, including due diligence, property need evaluations, ongoing capital improvement plans, budget analysis and project management for existing student housing projects.
Kyle is a graduate of North Carolina State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Management.
Executive Vice President of Development
Eick joined the The Preiss Company in 2012 and is responsible for overseeing the company’s interest in both current and under construction development projects, working in conjunction with joint venture partners on projects throughout the development phase and collaborating with the company's Chief Acquisitions & Development Officer on potential new development projects.
With 28 years of experience in the real estate development and construction management industries, Eick formerly served as Vice President of Design & Construction for JHM Hotels, Inc., a national, multi-brand hotel firm that develops, acquires, owns and operates hotels throughout the United States. He also served as Vice President of Development for publicly traded Winston Hotels, Inc., and Executive Vice President of Crockett Capital Corp., where he was involved with the design and construction of 30 hotels in 17 states, representing a total investment of $530 million.
Eick earned his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of South Alabama. He also is a licensed North Carolina general contractor and was the qualifying individual for unlimited general contractor’s license in the states of South Carolina, Tennessee and Florida.
Vice President of Marketing
Kasey Munsch began her career in operations as a Leasing and Marketing Manager while still in college. Joining TPCO in 2010, she has held increasingly more important positions in support of the company’s innovative marketing efforts. She oversees brand development, marketing and leasing strategy, creative messaging and both corporate and property-level marketing. Munsch also is responsible for resident programming initiatives, corporate communications, sports marketing partnerships and event planning. She manages the company’s in-house design team and oversees website development.
Munsch works closely with the New Business Development Team to support new business presentations and strategy. She plays a key role in company functions and conference planning and implements the company’s philanthropic initiatives.
She holds a Bachelor of Science in Communication & Public Relations from Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania.
Vice President of Public Relations
As Vice President of Public Relations, Preiss-Barger oversees TPCO’s external communications and ensures that they are in line with company standards. She also works to execute strategies to develop and maintain positive relationships with both media and clients. She is directly involved in the planning and implementation of company events.
Preiss-Barger graduated from St. Mary's College and also attended NC State University.