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SmartStop Self Storage Names Executive Vice President of Canada, Hires VP of Corporate Finance

SmartStop Self Storage REIT Inc., which operates 149 properties in 19 U.S. states and Toronto, has expanded its leadership team by promoting Bliss Edwards to executive vice president for Canada and hiring David Corak as vice president of corporate finance. Both executives will begin in their new roles immediately, according to a press release.

Edwards joined SmartStop as managing director of Canada in 2019. She’s overseen all areas of property acquisition and development, quadrupling the net rentable square feet in the company’s Canadian pipeline. She’s also been a key contributor to the company’s growing joint venture with SmartCentres in Toronto, the release stated.

Edwards previously spent four years with Dymon Storage as senior director of development and 10 years in land-use planning approvals with public and private organizations. She holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies in planning from the University of Waterloo.

“Bliss has been instrumental to our growth across the Greater Toronto area and has played an active role in all aspects of our business in the region, from sourcing new opportunities to negotiating deals,” said H. Michael Schwartz, executive chairman. “It is truly a pleasure to promote Bliss, and we are looking forward to continuing to benefit from her deep understanding of the self-storage industry and Canadian markets, as we continue to expand the SmartStop brand across Canada.”

In his role, Corak will focus on investor relations and guide corporate finance initiatives. Corak was most recently senior vice president of corporate finance for Jernigan Capital Inc., a publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT) that was recently acquired by NexPoint Advisors L.P. He has six years of “sell-side research” experience at Stifel Financial Corp. and FBR Capital Markets/B Riley Securities, where he covered the self-storage sector. He also has three years of corporate and investment-banking experience with PNC Financial Services Group Inc. Corak is a graduate of Georgetown University.

“David joins us with a depth of sell-side and public-company experience, which will help SmartStop refine its existing investor relations and corporate finance infrastructure,” said Michael McClure, CEO. “We're excited to have David join the company and contribute to expanding the SmartStop Self Storage brand across the U.S. and Canada.”

SmartStop is a self-managed REIT. Through its indirect subsidiary SmartStop REIT Advisors LLC, it sponsors other self-storage programs, including Strategic Storage Trust IV Inc., a public non-traded REIT. It has approximately $1.7 billion of real estate assets under management.

Sources:
PR Newswire, Bliss Edwards Promoted to Executive Vice President as SmartStop Self Storage Continues to Expand Its Canadian Presence
PR Newswire, David Corak Hired as Vice President of Corporate Finance at SmartStop Self Storage

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