New York-based Insignia/ESG has hired two pros formerly with Cleveland-based The Richard E. Jacobs Group, the nation’s largest privately held shopping center development and management firm, to head up its mall division. The move is seen as a strategic one to grow its business in the regional mall arena. The mall group will be based in Cleveland.

Stephen L. Huber, with more than 30 years of experience, joins Insignia/ESG as executive managing director, and Randy M. Woodle, a 22-year veteran, joins as director of mall management. Huber will oversee the leasing and management of malls and shopping centers, manage existing business and generate new opportunities throughout the country. Insignia is already providing these services to clients in strategic markets throughout the United States. Huber is charged with expanding the firm’s 7 million-sq.-ft. portfolio. Woodle will focus on generating new business opportunities as well as the day-to-day management of all malls in Insignia’s retail portfolio.

“We are very pleased to welcome Steve and Randy to our team,” said John Combs, president of U.S. Property Services. “As one of the nation’s largest non-REIT mall managers with a retail portfolio of over 18 million sq. ft. in the U.S., we are committed to growing our mall group. “The addition these two consummate professionals enables us to dedicate specialized resources to the mall and shopping center business, fine-tuning the services we bring to our retail clients nationally. During the course of the next 12 months, we plan to hire a number of other experts to generate new business and expand our leasing and management expertise to malls situated beyond tier one cities.”

Insignia/ESG manages malls in 15 states and the firm’s Capital Advisors Group has sold malls in 13 states.