With 45 years under its belt, Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Kentucky has been at the forefront of thousands of prestigious real estate deals in the Louisville area and surrounding region. That track record may also explain why its commercial real estate brokers average 15-20 years of tenure with the company. In fact, four of the 13 brokers have marked more than 30 years of service.
For Senior Director Jeffrey Dreher, it’s the people who have kept him inspired for 24 years – both the clients he has been fortunate enough to work with as well as his fellow brokers and staff at the company. “It really is the best of both worlds: the entrepreneurial freedom to bring yourself to the table coupled with the best practices of a nationally supported brand,” the broker said. “Commercial real estate always holds new opportunities and challenges.”
One recent opportunity – and challenge for Dreher, who specializes in office services – was to find a non-traditional office space in downtown Louisville for RowdMap, a healthcare analytics company that sought a unique combination of office space for the day-to-day operations and multi-purpose entertaining/event space for client focused events. The broker managed to find a warehouse downtown that suited all those needs and also worked within their budget.
“Today, at their new location on Magazine Street, they have a flexible work environment, basketball court, bar, stage, and even room for drone races,” said Dreher. “Being able to build great long-term relationships that translate into our clients achieving their goals – that is what it is all about,” he said.
Industrial Services Associate Blake Scinta is the new kid on the block. The former Centre College basketball standout has been at the firm for 18 months. He said he enjoys “meeting people and getting to know what’s going on in the city I was born and raised in; that intrigued me about the position.”
At 24, Scinta appreciates the way the experienced brokerage team at Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Kentucky has mentored him and given him opportunities to expand his knowledge base. “They have been beyond helpful in showing me the ins and outs of the industry,” he said. “Whether it’s going on tours or negotiating leases, or going to the national conference, their philosophy has been, ‘Your success is our success,’” said Scinta.
That’s why Phil Charmoli, Senior Director and a 31-year veteran in Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Kentucky’s industrial real estate division, advises new brokers to get sales training before embarking on a brokerage career. Charmoli’s first career incarnation was 17 years in sales with Xerox.
“You couldn’t do better than Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Kentucky. Starting with (Chairman) Phil Scherer, who probably has the most real estate experience in the city, you can go down the line and everyone here has their own niche in the company,” he said.
Charmoli, 71, said the career fits him. “You get to run your own mini-show inside a bigger company,” he said. The brokerage niche must run in the genes, since Charmoli’s son has also worked for the company for 20 years. The senior Charmoli’s decades of career accomplishments include Louisville’s airport expansion in the 1970s, UPS’ Supply Chain expansion on Outer Loop and the Amazon campus in Bullitt County.
Charmoli’s current project, Velocity 65, is a sprawling industrial complex in Shepherdsville, which upon completion, will span more than 4 million square feet. The project has involved complicated tasks, including assembling multiple land parcels, relocating a cemetery, and obtaining local, state, and federal approvals for construction of a new I-65 interchange and the new road named Alpha Way, which paves the way to the new industrial development.
Robert Walker, 41, started with Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Kentucky as an intern in 1999, and never left. The Senior Director, Industrial Real Estate Services, did a two-year stint in marketing research for the company before becoming a broker in 2003.
He said one of the fascinating things about being in the brokerage business is the wide spectrum of people he meets and connects with. “CEOs and CFOs really put their trust in you to help them navigate through their company’s difficult real estate decisions. On the other hand, you also have opportunities to build relationships with landlords and investors to help them lease and grow their real estate portfolios.” “Helping companies find the right location to be successful is rewarding to me because on some level, I am helping to create more jobs in our city.”
Walker said he isn’t surprised Cushman & Wakefield | Commercial Kentucky doesn’t have much turnover because the culture modeled by leadership is exemplary. “Phil Scherer is a nice and generous person, and everyone molds themselves after him. It’s a great place to become successful by helping the company and yourself learn and grow.”
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