President, COO, and Owner
Shay Hughes is president, COO, and owner of Hughes Marino, an award-winning commercial real estate firm specializing in tenant representation. Shay oversees all aspects of business operations, including brokerage and project management services, internal operations, human resources, marketing communications and expansion strategy. A true visionary, she has been instrumental in shaping Hughes Marino’s culture, spearheading the development of the company’s Core Values, and building a world-class team of professionals who are not only at the top of their game in business, but also treat one another like family. Shay’s creativity and family-style approach to business management have been integral in shaping Hughes Marino’s corporate culture, leading the company’s expansion and growing the firm from its first office into the nationally-recognized industry leader that it is today. Hughes Marino has been named by Fortune as one of the top ten best places to work in the nation, and Entrepreneur as the number two best company culture.
More important than dollars and cents, however, is the culture that Shay has worked so hard to develop based on Hughes Marino’s ten Core Values. She has cultivated a team of people who truly love what they do, and who are committed to always doing the right thing, which means protecting the interests of the thousands of businesses and organizations that Hughes Marino is proud to count as clients. “Our company has taken an antiquated industry and done a complete cultural revitalization, and we are excited to be breaking the mold of traditional real estate firms in all aspects. We are truly a family here, and our spouses and families are all part of the equation that makes this such an amazing place to work and be a part of.”
From the company retreats where employees and family members spend time with best-selling authors and speakers, to the family style living room, kitchen and game room that the team enjoys every day in each office, Shay’s impact on company culture has recharged the firm in a way that team members say could only be accomplished by a woman. She adds, “My life has always been about family, and that family includes our entire company. As unconventional as it might be in our industry, a little maternal instinct and love goes a long way in the workplace.”
Shay’s enthusiasm for business is matched only by her flawless eye for design. In addition to her role as president and COO, Shay personally designed all of Hughes Marino’s offices, working closely with the project teams to execute her vision for cozy, inviting workspaces with all the comforts of home. Shay designed these beautiful spaces to be a “home away from home” for the team. Eye-popping artwork, fully stocked kitchens, game rooms and plush, oversized sofas represent just one more way that Shay has helped Hughes Marino break the mold of what a commercial real estate firm can be. The creative and inspiring spaces she designed have been featured in numerous design publications, and have been named “Coolest Office” among other awards.
A California native, Shay received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Pepperdine University, where she graduated alongside her husband, Jason. In her free time, Shay enjoys traveling with her family, design and creative endeavors, and writing about business management and culture for several publications, including her blog, Lead from Within. Shay’s greatest achievement has been raising her three remarkable children.
- — Pepperdine University, B.A. in communications
- Honors and Awards
- — Women Who Move The City — San Diego Magazine (2012 & 2013)
- — Women Who Rock — SD Metro
- — Women Who Mean Business — San Diego Business Journal
- — Women's Summit Award — Los Angeles Business Journal (2016 & 2017)
- — Top 3 Finalist, Owner of the Year, Women's Council & Awards — Los Angeles Business Journal (2018)
- — Women in Business Nominee — Orange County Business Journal (2014 & 2015)
- — Women of Influence Nominee — Connected Women of Influence
- — San Diego Power Women in Real Estate Honoree — Bisnow
- — Women of Influence — L.A. Biz
- — Southern California’s Most Powerful Women Honoree — Real Estate Forum
- — 2017 Woman of Influence — Real Estate Forum
- — San Diego Business Journal — Featured Columnist