Part One: Six JLL Executives Named to Midwest Real Estate News Annual CRE Hall of Fame

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By: JC Pelusi, Market Leader, Managing Director, JLL

We’re thrilled to announce that six JLL executives from our Great Lakes Region have been named to Midwest Real Estate News’ annual Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame. We’d like to extend our congratulations to A.J. Weiner, Managing Director in Detroit, Bob Horn, Senior Vice President and Assistant Director in Grand Rapids, Joe Messina, Executive Managing Director in Cleveland, Collin Wheeler, Senior Vice President in Columbus, Doug Owen, Senior Vice President in Louisville, and Bill Poffenberger, Managing Director in Cincinnati.

Each of these six executives has their own unique skillset and is extremely talented, and well versed in their respective markets. In part one of our post, learn more about three of the six honorees and what they enjoy most about the industry.  

Editor’s Note: Originally published in Midwest Real Estate News’ Hall of Fame issue.

Bob Horn, JLL Grand Rapids

The perfect fit: What makes commercial real estate the perfect fit for Horn? It starts with the work itself and the clients with whom he interacts.

“Every client is unique, but I have been able to deliver their requirements with facilities that work and help their continued successes,” Horn said. “From furniture and automotive component suppliers, logistics companies and manufacturers of aircraft parts, the task of understanding their needs has been my priority.”

A leader: After overseeing the opening of JLL’s Grand Rapids office, Horn was a key player in attracting a significant number of distinguished assignments. Today, JLL is recognized as one of the top brokerage and property management firms in the region. 

The recipe for success: Horn has long believed in the power of hard work, dedication, and continued learning.

“It’s about taking advantage of every resource available and continuing to learn while adopting best practices from others,” Horn said. “The ever-changing environment of our industry keeps the motivation to improve.”

Doug Owen, JLL Louisville

It’s not about the money: Owen found a career that is the perfect fit for him in commercial real estate.

“I truly love my job and helping my clients find solutions for their real estate needs,” Owen said. “Doing so can be a difficult business at times, and if you focus on the money, you are set for failure. However, having a strong foundation of market knowledge and keeping up on the latest trends have enabled me to develop solid real estate solutions for my clients.”

Staying humble: Owen understands that the CRE business is constantly changing and that if he doesn’t keep up with these changes, he’ll be left behind.

“Not being complacent and remaining humble matters,” Owens said. “There are always opportunities, even in recessions, but if you become complacent in boom times, you will not have the relationships or pipeline to make it through downtimes.”

The route to success: “I was taught early on by my mentor, Bob Moore, that to be successful you must have ownership in every project, large or small,” Owens said. “Bob taught me that clients come first, to act as if you have an ownership interest in the property and to treat them how you would want to be treated. Relationships come before commissions.”

A.J. Weiner, JLL Detroit

Opportunity knocks: There’s a reason why Weiner has so many Fortune 500 clients. Weiner is known for his creative approach to problems. When asked what he enjoys most about commercial real estate?

Weiner says, “Creating opportunities and solutions. Commercial real estate is an industry that thrives on thinking ‘outside of the box,’ and I try to embrace that philosophy as often as possible.”

A love for the industry: There are plenty of additional reasons for Weiner’s success. For one thing, he’s passionate about commercial real estate. Weiner is one of the fortunate who works in a career that he loves.

“I enjoy the subject of commercial real estate,” Weiner said. “I relish discussing buildings, development, occupancy decisions, real estate statistics. The industry fascinates me, so I can easily say ‘I enjoy what I do for a living.’”

Studying: Weiner considers himself a lifelong learner when it comes to commercial real estate, which is why he ranks as one of the most knowledgeable practitioners in his market.

“I am a student of the industry and the marketplace,” Weiner said. “Amongst other traits, we are hired to be experts in our field and understand the trends of the market. To properly do so, I am always looking to learn more and refine my process.”