Best and Brightest in Commercial Real Estate for 2015!

Click here to view pictures of our award winners and the evening's festivities.

Columbus REALTORS® held its eighth annual Commercial Awards Banquet on Thursday, March 10, 2016, at The Renaissance Columbus Hotel in downtown Columbus. Nearly 200 commercial movers and shakers, supporters and leadership were on hand to applaud the outstanding accomplishments of our 2015 honorees.

The evening featured a panel discussion of the state of commercial real estate in central Ohio with Sam Koon, Samuel D. Koon & Associates, Brett Kaufman, Kaufman Development; and Steve Schoeny, Director, Department of Development, City of Columbus. Don DePerro, President and CEO of the Columbus Chamber of Commerce, served as moderator for this portion of the program.

After dinner and panelists presentations, Katie Zachrich, 2015 Commercial Recognition Committee Chair, took to the podium to present awards to the following honorees:

Molly M. Leach, CBRE
Molly’s vigorous work ethic and commitment to achieving the best possible outcomes for her clients are attributes that make her a standout in the profession and the choice for Columbus REALTORS® 2015 Commercial Rookie of the Year.

Molly specializes in medical real estate and has become an essential part of the firm’s team that is dedicated to working with Mount Carmel Health Systems and Central Ohio Primary Care and has taken the lead on several of their key transactions. Her experience in property management, understanding of the medical real estate market, skills in financial analysis, and persistence adds value to every transaction she’s been involved with.

Before joining CBRE, she was a property manager with NAI Ohio Equities, a maintenance coordinator with Colliers International and a marketing and administrative assistant with Crawford Hoying.

Molly was the head organizer of a Pelotonia event that raised $6,000 for cancer research; serves as a special music and nursery volunteer at Dublin Community Church; and volunteers for “Dress for Success Center,” helping unemployed women gain meaningful employment.

She holds the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) designation and a Bachelor of Music degree from Belmont University in Nashville, TN, where she was awarded the Senior Gift Scholarship for the most outstanding senior student as voted by her peers; and the Horizon Award for most outstanding freshman student as voted by professors.

And, in 2003, she was class Valedictorian at Lakewood High School in Hebron, Ohio.


Largest Transaction Industrial (sale) - Kevin McGrath and Rick Trott, CCIM, SIOR, CBRE, received this award for the sale of 13 industrial properties located throughout central Ohio (in Columbus, Grove City, Groveport, and Lockbourne). These properties, totaling 6,449,190 square feet of industrial space, were purchased by Big Box Property Owner (Abu Dhabi & PCCP) from Exeter Property Group (various LLCs) for $284,750,000.

Largest Transaction Industrial (lease) – Michael Mullady, Jeff Lyons and Matt Lehman, CBRE, picked up this award for a deal to construct a build-to-suit bulk warehouse on a 32-acre site at Rickenbacker Global Logistics Park. This 10-year, 17.7 million dollar lease deal between Duke Realty (landlord) and BASF Corporation (tenant) is for 421,200 square feet of warehouse space to be located at 9565 Logistic Court.

Largest Transaction Office (sale) – Andy Dutcher, Matt Gregory and Peter Merkle, NAI Ohio Equities, took home this prize for the 15.1 million dollar disposition of two office buildings at 274 East First Avenue, Columbus, and 400 East Campus View Blvd, Worthington.

The property on East First Avenue features 133,053 square feet of multi-tenant office space anchored by the State Library of Ohio, originally built by the Jeffrey Mining Company in 1950, and located just one-half mile north of the Columbus Central Business District in Italian Village and just blocks from I-670 and I-71. This building sits on almost 7 acres and features flexible zoning, 355 parking spaces, high ceiling and exposed brick and ductwork.

The Campus View property comprised of a one-story single tenant government office building with over 142,000 rentable square feet. It is located in Worthington and runs along the northern edge of I-270 from SR-315 to I-71. Built in 1987, this building sits on just over 12 acres and features a flexible open office environment, ample parking (670 spaces), courtyards, natural light and an auxiliary building generator. 

These two properties were purchased by Parkstone Capital Partners III, LP (a Delaware limited partnership) from JPMCC 2007-LDP10 Columbus Office LLC (an Ohio limited liability company).

Largest Transaction Office (lease) – Cory Kooperman and Brent Stamm, Continental Realty, received this award for negotiating a lease deal for 97,000 square foot of office space at 500 Olde Worthington Road.

This property is located just off I-71 at the Polaris Parkway interchange with exceptional access to the highway, downtown and I-270 for east and west travel. It’s also close to executive housing and major market drivers, such as healthcare, education and professional services.

Largest Transaction Retail (lease) – Sydney Federer, CASTO, is the recipient of this award for negotiating the 15-year, 10.9 million dollar lease deal for 28,709 square feet of retail space in Gahanna’s Vista Plaza.

This space, located at 1111 North Hamilton Road, will house Fresh Thyme Farmers Market – a specialty grocer similar to Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s.

Fresh Thyme plans to open 60 stores by 2019. One opened on Sawmill Road in August 2014, another opened in Worthington last summer, and a Westerville location is under construction.

The market in Gahanna is slated to open in 2016.

Most Co-op Transactions -- Michael Linder, SIOR, Shane Woloshan, SIOR, and Joel Yakovac, SIOR, Colliers International, were presented with this award for closing 67 co-op deals with more than 31 different companies last year.

The 2015 top producers are Eric Belfrage, CBRE; Wayne Harer, Continental Realty; Ken Isenbarger, Continental Realty; Andrew Jameson, Colliers International; Michael Linder, Colliers International; Jeff Lyons, CBRE; Michael Mullady, CBRE; Brent Stamm, Continental Realty; Shane Woloshan, Colliers International; and Joel Yakovac, Colliers International.
Sydney Federer, CASTO

The redevelopment project at Vista Plaza in Gahanna, which will house Fresh Thyme Farmers Market, was brokered by Sydney and her team with the city of Gahanna and involved two years of creative negotiations to bring to fruition.

This deal needed the approval of a development plan and certification of appropriateness from the Gahanna Planning Commission; extensive redevelopment of the plaza that involved the demolition of the western wing and a portion of the northern wing of the existing center to accommodate the market; ingress/egress and city signage/wayfinding efforts, water retention, environmental engineering, and the relocation of two existing tenants to the northern wing of the plaza.

Changes were also made to the south and east parking areas to provide wider spaces, landscaping was added at the entry from Vista Drive, and exterior finishes were done to complement the French country style of the existing center.

The parties to this 15-year, 10.9 million dollar lease deal were Onsite Retail Group, LLC and State Street Capital Realty, LLC.

The Gahanna Fresh Thyme Farmers Market is slated to open this year and will be housed in 28,709 square feet of retail space at 1111 North Hamilton Road.

Robert O. Click, CBRE

For his professionalism and outstanding commitment to the real estate industry and to the central Ohio community, Robert Click has been selected Columbus REALTORS® 2015 recipient of the Erika Blumenstein Memorial Award.

Rob is a Senior Vice President of CBRE’s central Ohio office, where his focus is on special projects and major client development and representations. He dedicates a significant portion of his time to serving as receiver for office, industrial, and retail assets on behalf of various courts, where he has over 30-years’ experience in this area and in his investments in multi-family, office and hotel properties, property management and brokerage.

In prior positions with CBRE, he has been responsible for the activities of all business units, including brokerage, valuation, global corporate services, real estate management, leasing, investment properties and project management and construction.

In addition, Rob has served on the Eastern Division Executive Committee and currently chairs CBRE’s 401K Committee.

For the Institute of Real Estate Management, he’s served as Senior Vice President of several divisions, chaired and served on several committees and as President of its Foundation.

He’s a former chair and current member of Columbus REALTORS® Commercial Recognition Committee, has participated in the Association’s 2013 Strategic Planning Workshop and has served on its Amnesty Sales Award Committee.

In the community, he’s chaired and currently serves as a 20-year Board member of the Columbus Cancer Clinic, and has served on the Board of Directors of Life Care Alliance and Brookside Golf & Country Club. He’s served as an usher and member of both the Finance and Parish committees at Worthington United Methodist Church.

Rob holds a Bachelor of Science, Business Administration (Marketing) degree from Eastern Kentucky University, and the Certified Property Manager (CPM) and the Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) professional designations.

This event was organized by the Columbus REALTORS® Commercial Recognition Committee and was made possible by the generous support of our gold, silver, bronze and commercial-affiliate level sponsors:

Gold Level
Colliers International

Silver Level
Keller Williams Commercial
NAI Ohio Equities
The Robert Weiler Company
Bronze Level
Balalovski Real Estate, LLC
Cushman & Wakefield
LOTH, Inc.
PM Title, LLC

Commercial Affiliate Level
Quandel Construction Group, Inc.
Taft, Stettinius & Hollister

Special thanks to Business First and Xceligent.

Also, a special note of thanks is extended to Mark Van Benschoten and Rea & Associates for providing its services in determining the 2015 Top Producers.