Breakfast Forum: The Houston Commercial Real Estate Markets – What’s Ahead for 2014
As part of its ongoing Breakfast Forum series, BoyarMiller gathered industry experts for a panel discussion on the look ahead for Houston’s Commercial Real Estate for 2014.
Speakers included: Will Holder with Trendmaker Homes; Jay Sears with NewQuest Properties; Jonathan Brinsden with Midway; and Welcome Wilson, Jr. with GSL Welcome Group.
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Land Development, Homebuilding &
Welcome Wilson, Jr.
Will Holder, President
Land Development, Homebuilding & Multi-Family Markets
Will has worked in the homebuilding and residential land development industry for over 30 years in Houston and in several other U.S. metro markets. He started his homebuilding career with David Weekley Homes. Later, he built apartments and townhomes in a dozen cities across the U.S. for 6 years with Lokey Properties. Will returned to Houston to work for 5 years for Village Builders. Ultimately, he joined Trendmaker Homes in 1993 where he has led the company to become the leader in luxury production homebuilding and MPC development. Founded in 1971, Trendmaker Homes is a subsidiary of Weyerhaeuser Real Estate Company operating across Texas under three brands: Trendmaker Homes, Avanti Custom Homes and Texas Casual Cottages. Trendmaker is known for its awarding winning home designs and its commitment to customer satisfaction. Will is the 2012 president of The Greater Houston Homebuilders Association and a guest expert on Real Estate forecasts and home building trends for local and national news, radio, TV, magazines and newspapers, including among others, Fox Business Report and USA Today. He holds a BA from Texas State University, an MBA from The George Washington University and is a graduate of the Stanford University Executive Program.
Jay K. Sears, Managing Partner
Jay is a 27-year veteran of the retail/commercial brokerage and development industry. As a co-founder and managing partner of NewQuest Properties, Jay focuses on new development opportunities, on the leasing activities of NewQuest’s development pipeline and on managing key client relationships with retailers and clients including Kroger, Walgreens, 24 Hour Fitness, Cinemark Theaters and Metro Transit Authority. In 1996, Jay founded Sears Realty Company, a commercial brokerage and development firm that developed, managed and leased numerous grocery-anchored shopping centers throughout the greater Houston area. He formed Sears Realty in response to the site selection and development needs of his grocery and retail clients, brokering or developing numerous transactions involving Albertsons, HEB Grocery Company, Kroger, Walgreen’s, PETCO Animal Supplies, Rice Epicurean Markets, 24 Hour Fitness, among many others. The company flourished and, in 2001, Jay merged with Quest Properties, with the merged company being renamed NewQuest Properties. Before establishing Sears Realty Company, Jay served as Vice President and Director of Leasing for Houston-based Summit Commercial Properties and was Director of Leasing for Rice Properties in Houston. Jay is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), a member of the Urban Land Institute, a member of the Rice Design Alliance, and is also involved extensively with KIPP - Houston serving on their Board of Trustees. He holds a BBA from Baylor University.
Jonathan Brinsden, President & Chief Executive Officer
Office Market/Mixed-Use Development
Jonathan serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of Midway. As one of four members of the Midway Executive Team, he guides the company's overall business strategy and operations. Jonathan joined Midway’s development team in 2001 and was named Chief Operating Officer in 2008. Prior to joining Midway, he served as President and COO of Hamm Corporation, a Houston-based development company.
Jonathan is an Adjunct Professor in the graduate real estate program at Texas A&M University and the University of Houston. He also serves on the Executive Advisory Board for both programs. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Board of Trustees and the Governance Chair, and immediate past Chair, of ULI Houston. Additionally, he is an active member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and NAIOP. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Construction Science, a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Design, and a Master’s of Science in Land and Real Estate Development, all from Texas A&M University.
Welcome W. Wilson, Jr., President & CEO
As President & CEO of Welcome Group, Welcome oversees the development, leasing, construction and purchase of single tenant office, lab, manufacturing and industrial facilities in Texas. Welcome Group has built over 150 such facilities since 1998 and still owns over 75 containing in excess of 3 ½ million square feet. Welcome has been a real estate developer for more than 35 years with extensive experience in industrial development, residential subdividing, retail centers and office buildings. He was President of Belmont Corporation, owner of a 25,000 acre project near Phoenix, Director of Dover Homes of Houston, builder of more than 3,000 homes in Texas and as an officer of TCP Realty Services, responsible for the redevelopment of a downtown Houston office building as well as other Houston office buildings totaling more than two-million square feet. He also serves as a principal of Kingham ∙ Dalton ∙ Wilson Ltd., a Design/Build affiliate of GSL Welcome and is a Director of River Oaks Financial Group, Inc.,
In 2011, Governor Rick Perry appointed Welcome to the Board of Regents of the University of Houston. He also serves on the Board of the Houston Realty Business Coalition, the Texas Business Hall of Fame, the Houston Food Bank, and the American Lung Association Advisory Board. Welcome serves as Chairman of the Board for the Southwest Houston Redevelopment Authority and Southwest Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone Twenty as well as the Energy Collaborative Cluster Council and the Common Grounds Initiative Committee of the Greater Houston Partnership, and is a member of the “C” Club. Welcome is a former Chairman of the End Hunger Network, as a Board Member of the Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation, as a Board Member of the Greater Sharpstown Management District, on the Houstonian Club Advisory Board, and as President of the Kinkaid School Alumni Association. Welcome attended The University of Denver and is a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity.