A privately held, vertically integrated real estate development and general contracting company, KIRE is devoted to solving California’s housing crisis by producing naturally occurring affordable housing for the “missing middle”.
People are our business. At KIRE, we are deeply skilled at producing high-quality, sustainable workforce housing communities for families of diverse income and generational housing needs. Our systematic approach, local expertise, extensive relationship network, and vertically integrated process allows us to identify and create substantial value for the communities we serve. KIRE is uniquely positioned to deliver on one of California’s greatest unmet needs – naturally occurring affordable housing opportunities for the “missing middle”.
KIRE personifies trust and credibility in the local market. As a boutique firm, we place significant importance on combining deep industry expertise and local insights with a warm, supportive company culture.
With more than 150 years of combined experience, our leadership team strives to create long-lasting value for our clients, investors, and partners. We are committed to the communities we serve and possess an authentic desire to provide housing opportunities for the “missing middle”.
Founded in 2012 by Kenneth Baumgartner, Joshua Santa, and Adam Hutchinson, the KIRE name is derived from a heartfelt commitment to Ken’s son, Erik, who was tragically taken at a young age. KIRE is Erik spelled backwards; the proper pronunciation is very similar to “hire” or “tire” (’kī(e)r).
It was Ken’s dream to have a father-son real estate business in San Diego and by forming KIRE, Erik’s legacy lives on. The KIRE team embodies the meaning behind its name, handling each project with heart and integrity.
Joshua Santa is a seasoned construction and real estate professional with 32 years of experience and currently serves as the President and CEO of KIRE Builders, Inc. Starting his career in construction at the age of 16, Josh has worked his way up through the industry, amassing a wealth of knowledge and expertise in various aspects of the construction process.
Josh’s journey began as a framer, where he gained invaluable exposure to every aspect of the construction process, working on diverse projects such as remote Indian reservation HUD homes, casinos, car dealerships, and numerous commercial jobs. Witnessing disorganization and inefficiencies in the industry, Josh decided to adopt a more strategic planning approach, which inspired him to launch JNL Development in 2002, a general contracting company.
Under Josh’s leadership, JNL Development grew rapidly, transitioning from remodels to building 7,000 square foot custom homes. The market conditions in 2007 prompted Josh to search for other opportunities beyond contract work, eventually leading him to build and sell properties with former President of The Corky McMillin Companies, Kenneth Baumgartner. Having successfully completed over 100 construction projects in his career, Josh was ready for the next challenge, and in 2012 KIRE was born.
After early success acquiring and completing bank-owned, partially completed single family and condominium developments through the recession years, KIRE completed their first multifamily apartment project in 2013. The completion of Addisyn Park Apartments signaled a shift in KIRE’s focus, and the mission since then has been to produce naturally occurring affordable housing for the “missing middle”.
Josh and his wife Lindsay, along with their three children, reside in Ramona, California. He is an avid hunter, fisherman, and Padres fan. He keeps very busy while attending his children’s local youth sports, as well as the family ranch.
Josh is a passionate leader with a proven track record of success in the construction and real estate industries. He is committed to providing high-quality workforce housing to the community, and he is excited to continue growing KIRE into a leading developer of naturally occurring affordable housing.
Adam is a Principal and the Chief Operating Officer of KIRE Builders, Inc., a position he has held since 2012. He is a results-oriented professional with a passion for creating communities and a commitment to providing housing solutions for the missing middle.
Adam’s career in real estate development began at a young age, when he would spend summers working on his father’s construction sites throughout the Northeast. He developed a deep understanding of the building process and a keen eye for detail during this time.
After graduating from the University of Michigan with a degree in Economics, Adam moved to San Diego and began working for Ken Baumgartner, former President of The Corky McMillin Companies, at KIRE Management. He quickly rose through the ranks, and partnered with Joshua Santa to co-found KIRE Builders, Inc. in 2012.
In his role as the Integrator for KIRE, Adam is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the company’s operations. He is also responsible for developing and implementing the company’s strategic vision. With Adam at the helm, KIRE has completed over 400 units, with nearly 500 in planning/construction and has gone on to win 2016’s Best New Home Builder by the San Diego Union-Tribune. KIRE Realty, Inc. has closed over 125 transactions, while Adam has had his hand in over $200M+ of real estate transactions.
Adam is an active participant in the Urban Land Institute and has served several years on the Board of Directors for the Building Industry Association’s Y|GEN Council, including his time as Chair in 2017. His commitment to the building industry and its people earned him the 2015 BIA Icon Award for Rookie of the Year. Adam’s primary concern is “Are we doing it right?” and he never settles for no.
In his personal life, Adam is a family man who loves spending time with his wife, daughter, and two dogs. He enjoys live music, boating, and supporting every sports team from his alma mater, Go Blue! He is also an active supporter of the National CMV Foundation, a nonprofit organization that raises awareness and funds research for Congenital Cytomegalovirus.
Rolando is the accomplished Director of Finance for KIRE Builders, where he oversees all financial activities for the company. With a Bachelor’s degree in Business from San Diego State University, Rolando’s extensive experience in the commercial real estate industry has made him a trusted leader in his field.
After serving in the United States Navy, Rolando began his career with Ernst W. Hahn, Inc., a leading shopping center developer responsible for the construction of San Diego’s iconic Horton Plaza, Fashion Valley, and Parkway Plaza malls. Following the acquisition of The Hahn Company by Trizec Corporation in 1980, Rolando took on a key role at City Link Investment Corporation, where he played a critical role in the successful City Heights redevelopment project.
Rolando’s impressive track record led to his hiring as Financial Manager at The Corky McMillin Companies, where he remained for 17 years until joining KIRE Builders in 2014. With his expertise and dedication, Rolando continues to drive KIRE’s financial success and position the company for continued growth and prosperity.
Stephan Gaspar is a seasoned real estate development professional with over nine years of multifamily development experience in Southern California. Born into a family with strong ties to residential development and mortgage brokerage, Stephan pursued a Finance degree from San Diego State University, paving the way for a successful career.
After graduation, Stephan started at Urban Housing Partners (UHP), a boutique mixed-use development firm. There, he sharpened his market research, underwriting, and entitlement management skills and offered valuable support to the company’s development partners in the local political landscape. His unique experiences at UHP include consulting on high-profile entitlements, assisting local families with legacy properties, and gaining exposure to construction management duties.
Stephan later joined KIRE Builders, Inc. as Development Manager, overseeing all aspects of the development process. His contributions have been crucial in implementing KIRE’s strategic vision through the land procurement, financial engineering, and design processes, as well as achieving the company’s mission of providing housing for the missing middle and maximizing investor value.
As Development Manager, Stephan works closely with the project design teams to ensure community livability and value for future residents. He champions creative design, cultivates relationships with local municipalities and public agencies, and leverages his financial expertise for informed decision-making. He has managed the completion of over 180 units across 11 projects and is currently overseeing 500+ units in 8 projects that are under construction or in planning.
Stephan is a committed advocate for housing and pro-development policy, actively participating in the Building Industry Association (BIA) and Urban Land Institute (ULI). He is an active member of the ULI Young Leaders Group and the BIA yGEN Council.
In his personal life, Stephan is an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys various forms of biking, trail running, camping, and spending time with loved ones. After spending his childhood visiting family in San Diego, he decided to make the city his home in 2009 and he hopes to leave a positive, lasting impact on the community through his work in real estate development.
Our Strategic Approach
Celebrating our 11th year in business, the KIRE team is deepening its commitment to the following statements:
Solve the housing supply issue for the missing middle market by creating long-lasting, eco-friendly housing, without sacrificing quality or amenities.
Lead with our values in every aspect of our work. Our vision demands thorough collaboration of our team, community partners, and industry experts and is guided by our five core principles:
At KIRE, we are committed to doing more than business in the communities we serve.
The connection, commitment, and conversation that KIRE is engaged in throughout the greater San Diego area, extends far beyond the philanthropy, civic engagement and charitable giving we take part in.
Our exquisitely crafted properties are hand-built to withstand the test of time. It is important to us that we build our communities to do the same.
We are so proud to serve this amazing community and are humbled by their appreciation.
San Diego’s Favorite Union Tribune Readers Poll 2018
KIRE Builders makes donations and supports National CMV to raise awareness and educate the public. June is National CMV Awareness Month. For more information about CMV and how you can help please visit www.nationalcmv.org
Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition: Ribbon Cutting of Nickel Creek Townhomes in Ramona CA and appreciation of KIRE Builders investment in the Ramona Community.
USO San Diego Outstanding Partner Award: KIRE Builders helps San Diego active-duty military and their families with the refurbishment of the USO San Diego Downtown Center.
NFIB: Voice of Small Business member
Ramona Chamber of Commerce: Proud member of the Ramona Chamber of Commerce
Temecula Valley Battling Kodiaks: KIRE Builders is a proud sponsor of the Temecula Valley Battling Kodiacs
Top 10 Favorite Builder of 2017
Ramona Bulldogs: KIRE Builders is a proud sponsor of the Ramona Bulldogs
Ramona Pony League: KIRE Builders is a proud sponsor of the Ramona Pony League
KIRE Builders donates $1,000 to Montecito High School Skillsusa Club to help the qualifying students compete in the State Competition in April 2018. SkillsUSA is a partnership of students, teachers, and industry working to prepare a skilled workforce.
San Diego BEST New Home Builder 2016
Get In Touch
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- Address: 10625 Scripps Ranch Blvd, Suite F, San Diego, CA 92131
- Phone: 1-888-954-7326
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