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The Latest Real Estate News, Investing and Housing Market Tips
                              


This week’s People of Note includes the following markets: Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, , Northern New Jersey, Orlando, Philadelphia, and Tampa Bay.
NEW YORK CITY
Bermingham Joins USAA Real Estate’s NY Regional Office
By Laurie Forbes

USAA Co. hired Thomas V. Bermingham as managing director of investments. He is based in the firm’s new northeast regional branch in New York City. Bermingham will supervise the office’s acquisition, development and joint venture opportunities.

The industry veteran has more than three decades of commercial real estate experience. Bermingham previously worked as a senior vice president at Patrinely Group, an affiliate of Crimson Real Estate Fund LP (CREF), which USAA Real Estate is an investor. He led its acquisition team and supervised development in the Northeast.

Bermingham also spent 11 years as a senior executive for Insignia Financial Group, later purchased by CBRE, managing the company’s New Jersey office before overseeing all international corporate services between the U.S. and from London.


Editor’s Note: CoStar’s People of Note is published each Friday covering the latest commercial real estate executive level promotions and new hires. Click on the headline of each article to jump to full coverage. Follow the news on Twitter [at] LaurieForbes and [at] TheCoStarGroup.


ORLANDO, SOUTHWEST FLORIDA, TAMPA BAY
Colliers Promotes Kratz, Scott
By Justin Sumner

Colliers International Tampa Bay, Central and Southwest Florida has named Ryan Kratz (left) as president and John K. Scott (right) as senior executive managing director.

Kratz formerly served as executive managing director of brokerage, marketing and operations. Scott formerly held the title of executive vice president of management. The duo has worked with Lee Arnold, the company’s Chairman and CEO, to realize 21 percent revenue growth at the company over the past two years while adding 21 employees including 11 brokers and 6 marketing specialists during the same time period, according to a company release.

Kratz joined the firm in 2010 from NorthMarq. In his new role he will be responsible for strategic and day-to-day operations, building on his ability to lead a wide range of projects and initiatives. Kratz received his MBA with honors from the Harvard Business School.

Scott joined Colliers from Cushman & Wakefield a year ago, and is now responsible for more than 8 million square feet of property under management. Additionally, Scott is a leading expert on sustainability in commercial management, having served as Chair of the BOMA International Sustainability and Market Initiative Task Force.

 


DENVER, PHILADELPHIA
BGC Partners Acquires Newmark Affiliates in Denver, Philadelphia
By Randyl Drummer

BGC Partners Inc., parent of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank (NGKF), beefed up its presence in Denver and Philadelphia, acquiring separate commercial real estate companies that have operated as Newmark Knight Frank affiliates for several years.

The company acquired Smith Mack, a prominent commercial real estate services company in the greater Philadelphia area that became a Newmark affiliate in 2009. It also bought Frederick Ross Co., the oldest full-service CRE firm in Denver and a Newmark partner since 2010. Financial terms of the deals were not disclosed.

NGKF CEO Barry M. Gosin noted that the pair of acquisitions further bolster Newmark Grubb’s national expansion and confirms that its extended platform “offers clients the best real estate solutions in the industry.”

Smith Mack founding partners Sidney (Sid) Smith, Jeff Mack and Reid Blynn have been named executive managing directors of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank. The team will be joined by most of Smith Mack’s existing brokerage and advisory professionals, who will occupy offices with NGKF professionals in downtown Philadelphia; Wayne, PA; Wilmington, DE; and Marlton, NJ.

In Denver, Jack Box, who has served as president and chief executive officer of Frederick Ross for 24 years, will assume the title of chairman for this NGKF region. Kevin McCabe, credited with growing the Denver office brokerage division by 45 percent since his arrival in 2011, has been appointed executive vice president and managing director for Colorado.

 


ATLANTA
Jackson Joins Transwestern
By Ben Paul

Bo Jackson (left) joined Transwestern’s Atlanta office as managing director and partner.

Jackson will co-manage the firm’s service lines, expand the company’s development and investment businesses, as well as recruit brokers and business development. He will report to Bruce Ford (right), Transwestern’s president in the southeast region. Jackson previously served as executive vice president at Colonial Properties Trust for six years and has worked at Beacon Properties, Hines, Vantage, and other real estate companies.

The veteran broker has more than three decades of commercial real estate experience. Jackson’s specialty is leasing and sales brokerage, advisory, valuation, asset management, investment services, real estate development and project management.

 


PHILADELPHIA
Ballard Spahr Names Mellits Chair, Real Estate Department
By Laurie Forbes

appointed Bart I. Mellits as chair of its real estate department on Jan. 1, 2013. Mellits, a real estate leasing, acquisition, development and financing specialist, will oversee a staff of 110 attorneys in 11 of the firm’s 13 branches. He is based in Philadelphia.

He succeeds Michael Sklaroff who built the department from the ground up 25 years ago. Sklaroff will continue his practice in real estate development, land use and eminent domain.

Mellits is a partner in firm. He is a member of Ballard Spahr’s elected and expanded boards and formerly served as vice chair of the real estate department. His practice includes working with commercial landlords and tenants on retail, office, industrial and other types of leases. Most of Mellits’ development practice involves biotech parks, R&D facilities and medical buildings.

 


NORTHERN NEW JERSEY
Durning To Lead Prudential’s Commercial Mortgage Company
By Timothy Stuart

Prudential Financial Inc., the second largest life insurance firm in the United States, named David Durning president of its commercial mortgage business. Durning will replace David Twardock when he retires in April. Twardock had held the post since 1999.

The $73 billion investment firm is currently targeting the commercial real estate industry to boost investment income. In the past month, Hal Collet was promoted to president of Prudential Asset Resources to oversee commercial mortgage servicing.

Durning currently serves as a senior managing director and joined Prudential in 1988 as an investment analyst. He previously held positions at Shearson Lehman and Chemical Bank.

 


CHICAGO
Baum Realty Names Demetriou COO
By Bryce Meyers

Mike Demetriou has been named the new chief operating officer of Baum Realty Group LLC in Chicago. Demetriou will oversee Baum’s national real estate services division, which serves national retailers and franchisors to help streamline their operations.

He previously served as a senior real estate associate at both Sidley Austin and SNR Denton in Chicago where he focused on the financing, acquisition, disposition and leasing of commercial real estate throughout the country.

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