MINOT, N.D., Aug. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE: IRET) (NYSE: IRETPR) (NYSE: IRETPRB), a self-administered, equity real estate investment trust investing in income-producing properties located primarily in the upper Midwest, today announced that the Company has hired Mark Decker Jr. as its new President and Chief Investment Officer, effective Monday, August 8, 2016. Mr. Decker will replace Timothy P. Mihalick as President, but Mr. Mihalick will continue to serve as the Chief Executive Officer, providing strategic leadership and vision for the Company. "As we continue to transform IRET into a pure-play multifamily REIT, we have strengthened our bench of management talent with the addition of Mark Decker, Jr. as our President and Chief Investment Officer," stated Mr. Mihalick. "Mark has been a valued partner to IRET for the last 9 years and with over 19 years of real estate, managerial, and investment banking experience, he brings a deep understanding of the real estate capital markets and strategic transactions. We believe Mark will add tremendous value to our organization during this exciting time, and we look forward to his contribution as we execute on our strategic initiatives. " As President and CIO, Mr. Decker will focus on furthering operational excellence, prudent capital allocation and balance sheet strength as part of the Company's overall mission to maximize value for shareholders. Mr. Decker most recently served as Managing Director and US Group Head of Real Estate Investment & Corporate Banking at BMO Capital Markets, where he helped grow the platform into an active participant in real estate debt, equity and M&A transactions. He has worked for nearly 16 years as a real estate investment banker at BMO Capital Markets, Robert W. Baird & Co. and Ferris, Baker Watts and during that time, was responsible for more than $90 billion in real estate capital markets and advisory transactions. Prior to that, Mr. Decker started his career in banking in Friedman, Billings, Ramsey & Co., Inc.'s Financial Institutions Group. Mr. Decker holds a B.A. in History from the College of William & Mary.