Mitchell Nelson

Mitchell J. Nelson has more than 40 years’ experience as an attorney specializing in real estate law, a trustee and an investor. He started practicing real estate law at Wien, Malkin & Bettex in 1973, became a partner in 1979 and supervised real estate transactions and property management of varied properties owned by syndicates of the firm and outside clients while serving on the Executive Committee and Management Committee of the firm until 1992. In 1992 he became counsel to Proskauer Rose and joined with a partner to do outside bankruptcy consulting work relating to real estate. In 1994 Mr. Nelson started two private investment funds specializing in real estate securities, which he ran until 2006. In 1994, he also became of counsel to Christy & Viener, continuing to practice real estate law until 2006, when he became a senior officer of FX Real Estate & Entertainment, Inc., a location-based entertainment company. While at FX Real Estate & Entertainment, he handled the company’s public offering, as well as real estate and other related projects for the company, its founders, and their affiliates, including mergers and acquisitions, employment, litigation oversight, joint venture, limited liability company and general corporate and securities work and related matters. Currently, Mr. Nelson is Executive Vice President of Function(x) Inc. (NASD: FNCX), a social publishing company, and an independent advisor on real estate matters.

In addition to his affiliation with Columbia GSAPP as a lecturer in the Real Estate Development program since 2011, Mr. Nelson has spoken regarding investing in US real estate securities to conferences organized by The Bank Credit Analyst and TASS, has also taught real estate contracts law at Cardozo Law School, and has lectured at the New York State Bar Association and at Columbia Business School.

Mitchell Nelson is an honorary director of the 92nd Street Y. He has served as a director of The Merchants Bank of New York and a member of the Advisory Board of its successor, Valley National Bank. Over the years Mitchell Nelson has been a trustee of Collegiate School and served on the Visiting Committee of the University of Chicago Law School, the Board of Overseers of Brandeis University’s Wien International Scholarship Program, and the Board of Directors of the Citizens Housing and Planning Council. He has also been a member of the Advisory Boards of the New York Real Estate Law Reporter and Security Title and Guaranty Company, and a member of the Real Estate Board of New York.

Mr. Nelson received a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School in 1973 and a B.A. from Brandeis University in 1971, magna cum laude with honors in philosophy. At Brandeis, he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and named a Louis Brandeis Scholar.


Course Semester Title Student Work Instructor Syllabus Requirements & Sequence Location & Time Session & Points Call No.
P6798‑1 Summer 2017
Legal Principles of Real Estate
Mitchell Nelson Elective
200 Fayerweather
TU & F 9 AM - 11 AM
6/6, 6/9, 6/13, 6/16, 6/20, 6/23
1.5 Points
Pla6375‑1 Spring 2017
Commercial Leasing
Martin Gold, Mitchell Nelson Elective
114 Avery Hall
Tu 9 AM -11 AM
Ses B 3/6 - 5/1
1.5 Points