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James A. Thurston

James A. Thurston Headshot
Chief Financial Officer, MBA, CPA

As chief financial officer, Jim leads Ambrose’s accounting and business operations, supports growth in Ambrose’s fund business and works to advance organizational infrastructure and streamline processes and procedures. His background includes 20+ years in the commercial real estate industry, both domestic and international, with experience in back-office optimization, budgeting and forecasting and valuation and finance.

Jim served in leadership roles at both General Growth Properties (GGP) and Simon Property Group (SPG). As chief accounting officer at GGP, Jim was responsible for the oversight of the post-bankruptcy accounting centralization effort from the field, driving systemic and organizational efficiencies, improving lease data and accounts receivable processes and leading the completion of a CRM implementation. While at SPG, Jim served as vice president of finance for international operations, where he worked with joint ventures to evaluate new development opportunities and monitor operations, as well as underwriting mergers and acquisitions and disposition opportunities. Prior to Ambrose, Jim owned a consulting practice, Thurston Advisory & Consulting, where he worked with Indianapolis-based clients and served as a real estate expert for One11 Advisors, RealFoundations and Alix Partners.

Jim holds a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, and earned his Bachelor of Arts in accounting from Michigan State University. Jim is a native of Indianapolis and loves all things Indy. In his spare time, he enjoys playing golf / mini golf with his sons, Patrick and Matthew, attending large sporting events, supporting intercollegiate athletics at Michigan State and is a Colts season ticket holder.

Industry + Community

Since 2000, Jim has served as the CFO and is a director for a $20 million private foundation serving primarily central Indiana educational, housing and other community needs. He has also been part of the core alumni leadership group seeking the reinstatement of the Men’s and Women’s Swimming & Diving programs at Michigan State University.


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