Avi Telyas - Founder and CEO of Makerhoods

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Avi Teylas is an American real estate developer, serial entrepreneur, and pioneer in lean manufacturing and large-scale modular construction. His passion for architecture and craft entrepreneurship has led him to found Makerhoods.org, an organization which advocates for urban land use policies that foster self-employment and self-sufficiency through affordable working and living space.

Mr. Teylas is a 1986 graduate of the Harvard Business School and a former trustee of Pratt Institute. He is also principal of Seaview Development where he has worked over 30 years running complex projects and operations. An innovator and inventor, Mr. Teylas patented a technique for high-rise modular building systems, which is the basis for the tallest modular building in the world in Brooklyn’s Barclay Center.

The Makerhoods program brings together his lifelong interest in entrepreneurship and urban development. He embarked on his own entrepreneurial career by acquiring a small manufacturer based in New York City while still in graduate school and proceeded to grow the business by applying the techniques of the Toyota Production System. Mr. Teylas devotes his free time to pro-bono consulting for various charitable and nonprofit organizations in the metropolitan area such as Literacy, Inc., a literacy promotion group; The Waterfront Alliance, a NY-based organization protecting and enhancing the water’s edge; Grameen Bank, a micro-loan innovator targeting low-income entrepreneurs; and Urban Pathways, a developer of supportive housing.