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Announcements & News

Belk, Inc. Gives $5 Million To Belk College At Unc Charlotte

Feb. 12, 2013 – Belk, Inc. and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte today announced that Belk, Inc. will donate $5 million to the university’s Belk College of Business. This gift is the largest in the history of the Belk College, which was named in honor of the Belk family and organization in 1990.

The announcement was made at UNC Charlotte’s Center City campus at a luncheon attended by university officials and more than 100 business and community leaders.

“UNC Charlotte and the Belk College of Business have long benefited from the generosity and dedicated personal involvement of the Belk family and executives at Belk, Inc.,” said UNC Charlotte Chancellor Philip L. Dubois. “This gift not only reinforces that very special relationship, but marks a new era in corporate-university partnerships for the college and the university.”

Components of the gift include:
• Endowed Professorship in Business Innovation
Building on a growing focus on innovation in business as well as Belk’s specific emphasis on this area, this faculty position will add expertise in the research and teaching of innovation – ideas and processes that add value to business, customers and society. In addition to creating curriculum and teaching courses on innovation, the professor will teach alongside Belk, Inc. associates and will serve as a liaison to the company for programs that support innovation. Matching funds from the State of North Carolina will provide an additional $500,000 to this endowment.
• Endowed Chair in Marketing Analytics
This faculty position will play a key role in development of the Data Science and Business Analytics (DSBA) initiative being championed by UNC Charlotte, providing research and teaching expertise in the growing fields of customer analytics and customer relationship management. This professor will also help develop a learn-work-hire program for Belk College students to prepare participants for direct entry into the retail industry. Matching funds from the State of North Carolina will provide an additional $667,000 to this endowed faculty fund.
• Belk Scholars Program
This program will identify undergraduate business students with high potential and groom them for careers in analytics and business innovation. Scholars will participate in a fast-track program that leads directly to a graduate program, with students encouraged to pursue the proposed Professional Science Masters (PSM) in Data Science and Business Analytics currently under development at UNC Charlotte.
• Faculty Research and Teaching Grants
These funds will support research and curriculum development by Belk College faculty in the areas of marketing analytics, customer analytics, customer relationship management and strategic innovation. Some research projects and educational offerings will be developed in partnership with Belk, Inc.

“This is a transformational gift for the Belk College,” said Steven H. Ott, dean of the college. “With the support of Belk, Inc. we can build on our strong reputation of collaboration with the business community by moving into new areas of growth and opportunity. We want to be seen by Charlotte’s business community as the region’s school of choice for business education, and to be recognized as a preeminent public urban research business school.”

The UNC Charlotte gift comes as Belk, Inc. prepares to celebrate its 125th anniversary this spring. “As we celebrate our 125th year in 2013, we are honoring our heritage while celebrating the future. This gift symbolizes both values,” explained Chairman and CEO Tim Belk. “This contribution honors our decades-long support of education, while it provides the foundation of future growth for the University’s Belk College of Business.”

Ties between the company and UNC Charlotte’s college of business run deep. The college was named in honor of the Belk family and organization in 1990, in recognition of their long-standing personal and philanthropic contributions. The late Thomas M. Belk, a UNC Charlotte trustee, was the first chair of the college’s Business Advisory Council in the 1980s, a position later held by his son, current Belk Inc. President and Chief Operating Officer John R. Belk, in the early 2000s. The late John M. Belk, then Chairman of the company, contributed $1.5 million to the college in 2003 to support expansion of international programs. Most recently, The Belk Foundation provided a $250,000 grant for the Belk College to launch the Student Center for Professional Development this year, a comprehensive career resource center for undergraduate business students.

“We’re grateful to Belk, Inc., for believing in the Belk College’s aspiration to be at the forefront of business education in the 21st century,” said Chancellor Dubois. “We hope this gift – and the resulting partnerships between the college and the company – will serve as a catalyst for other companies to strengthen their involvement with the university and mobilize our vast intellectual resources.”

About Belk, Inc.:
Charlotte, N.C.-based Belk, Inc. ( is the nation's largest family owned and operated department store company with 301 Belk stores located in 16 Southern states. The company was founded in 1888 by William Henry Belk in Monroe, N.C., and is in the third generation of Belk family leadership. Its website offers a wide assortment of fashion apparel, shoes and accessories for the entire family along with top name cosmetics, a wedding registry and a large selection of quality merchandise for the home. To connect with Belk via Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, blog, mobile phone text messages or by email, go to: Belk Get Connected.

About the Belk College of Business:
Accredited by AACSB International, the Belk College of Business at UNC Charlotte offers outstanding business education programs at the undergraduate, graduate and doctoral levels, including a nationally-ranked part-time MBA program based at UNC Charlotte Center City. The Belk College is committed to building strong partnerships in the Greater Charlotte region and beyond as a vital part of our mission as North Carolina’s urban research business school. Visit

Media contacts:
Belk, Inc: Jessica Graham, 704-426-8333, 704-668-5342 (cell);
Belk College: Sasha Trosch, 704-687-7601, 704-517-8730 (cell);
UNC Charlotte: Buffie Stephens, 704-687-5830, 980-355-3110 (cell),

Trinity Partners Announces Jeld-wen Lease In Downtown Charlotte’s Ally Center

January 29, 2013 – Trinity Partners is pleased to announce Jeld-Wen Windows and Doors has leased 23,187 SF in Ally Center in Downtown Charlotte’s Third Ward. Trinity Partners’ Leah Bailey, SIOR, and John Ball represented the landlords, Trinity Capital Advisors and Principal Real Estate Investors.

"We are thrilled Jeld-Wen chose our building," noted Bailey. "This is such an exciting time for Ally Center and downtown Charlotte. Romare Bearden Park’s spring opening and the construction of new apartments and the baseball stadium is creating remarkable energy around Ally Center and Third Ward."

Trinity Partners’ Project Manager, Margaret Markovich, and Director of Construction Services, Randy Gonyea, have been hired by ownership to upfit Jeld-Wen’s first-generation space. The company plans to move into the fourth floor of the building in March of this year.

Brian Brtalik of Cushman Wakefield | Thalhimer represented Jeld-Wen in the transaction.

Jeld-Wen is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of reliable windows and doors. Jeld-Wen began operations in 1960 and today has approximately 20,000 employees across more than 100 locations in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Australia. The company’s extensive product offering encompasses windows, exterior doors, interior doors and related building products that are sold globally through multiple distribution channels, including retail home centers, wholesale distributors and building products dealers. Jeld-Wen has been an ENERGY STAR Partner since 1998.

Ally Center is a 15-story, 365,000 square foot building located at 440 South Church Street in the heart of the cultural campus in downtown Charlotte. Developed by Trinity Capital Advisors and managed by Trinity Partners Management, Ally Center was completed in October of 2009 and is North Carolina’s first LEED Gold Certified Core and Shell building. Tenants include Ally Bank and HDR, and Trinity Partners recently announced Driven Brands’ seventh floor lease and fast-casual Just Fresh’s ground floor lease. The building is now 83% occupied.

Molly Carroll

Crew Charlotte Member Virginia Rolfes Named To Rising Stars List

Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP announced today that Charlotte managing
partner Daniel S. Huffenus was named to the 2013 North Carolina Super Lawyers list. In addition,
litigation associate Jeffrey C. Grady and real estate special counsel Virginia B. Rolfes were
named to the 2013 Rising Stars List.

Huffenus heads Katten’s Charlotte Real Estate Practice. He has a sophisticated commercial real
estate finance practice that is national in scope and covers all asset types. Huffenus has extensive
experience representing real estate capital markets lenders in the origination of commercial
mortgage loans.

Super Lawyers is a rating service that selects outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice
areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The
selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.
Katten is a full-service law firm with more than 600 attorneys in locations across the United
States and in London and Shanghai. Clients seeking sophisticated, high-value legal services turn
to Katten for counsel locally, nationally and internationally. The firm’s core areas of practice are
corporate, financial services, insolvency and restructuring, litigation, real estate, environmental,
commercial finance, intellectual property and trusts and estates. Katten represents public and
private companies in numerous industries, including a third of the Fortune 100, as well as a
number of government and nonprofit organizations and individuals. For more information, visit

Trinity Partners Leasing Update – 01/16/2013

Just Fresh Comes to Downtown’s Ally Center

Ally Center recently announced Driven Brands signed a lease for the entire 7th floor, and tenants will soon have a new amenity to enjoy. Fast-casual restaurant Just Fresh has signed a lease for 2,025 SF on the ground floor of the building. The restaurant will open in Spring of 2013, around the same time as Romare Bearden Park is scheduled for completion.

Wyndham Capital Mortgage Expands and Renews at Three South Executive Park

Trinity Partners’ Leah Bailey, SIOR, recently renewed and expanded Wyndham Capital Mortgage in SouthPark’s Three South Executive Park. The group expanded by 5,146 SF and now leases a total of 23,690 SF in the building. Ben Speir of Cherry & Associates represented Wyndham Capital in the transaction. The building is currently featuring its top floor available for lease, 16,000 SF of contiguous space in move-in ready condition.

Trinity Partners to Continue Management and Leasing Assignment at LakePointe Corporate Center

Wells Real Estate Investment Trust has sold LakePointe Corporate Center 3 and 5 to Starwood Capital Group, and Trinity Partners will continue leasing and managing the assets. Trinity Partners has leased and managed the assets since April 2009. Both buildings are currently 100% occupied.

Director of Operations Jay Coombs Awarded Energy Management Certification

Jay Coombs (CEM, LEED AP), has achieved Energy Management Certification from the Association of Energy Engineers after meeting a strict set of requirements that included requisite field experience, prior educational achievements, and a CEM exam. As Trinity Partners’ Director of Operations, Jay works with the firm’s portfolio to manage and enhance sustainable energy practices. Jay has been with Trinity Partners for over 10 years.

Partner Terry Brennan Awarded the 2012 NAIOP Award of Excellence

Each year NAIOP (Commercial Real Estate Development Association) honors a recipient for their contributions to the commercial real estate industry and the community at large. Outgoing 2012 Chapter President, Charles Jonas, said Brennan received an overwhelming number of votes.

"Terry is a quiet, lead-by-example type of leader, and an active participant in providing education to our elected officials about industry issues. He works to create positive solution-based answers," Jonas said. "His thoughtful approach has led to a respectful appreciation and understanding of our industry issues."

Terry served as NAIOP’s President in 2010 and continues to serve on their Board of Advisors. Terry leads Trinity Partners’ Industrial Property Services group, and has been with the firm for over 14 years.

2120 Gateway Blvd Sells to Garmon & Company for $925,000

Trinity Partners’ William Maxwell recently represented Germany’s Interfinance Investment Company in the sale of 2120 Gateway Boulevard to Charlotte-based Garmon & Company, a commercial flooring contractor. The 22,095 SF industrial facility is located just off of the I-85 Service Road, and was formerly home to PAM Fastening Technology, whom Trinity Partners helped relocate after they outgrew the building.

Trinity Capital Advisors Purchases Two Buildings In Charlotte's Shopton Ridge Industrial Park

January 16, 2012 – Trinity Capital Advisors is pleased to announce their purchase of two Class A office/warehouse buildings in Southwest Charlotte’s Shopton Ridge Industrial Park: 3845 Shopton Road (18-A) and 3810 Shutterfly Road (18-D). The buildings were purchased through a joint venture with PCCP (Pacific Coast Capital Partners).

The two buildings total 211,200 square feet and are located in Charlotte’s Southwest submarket, an exceptional location and accessibility at the intersection of I-485 and Highway 160. Major tenants include Linde Gas, Apria Healthcare, and Cardinal Health. The new ownership has hired Trinity Partners to handle leasing and management responsibilities for 18-A and 18-D. Senior Broker Bill Wood says the high-quality assets are well-positioned within one of Charlotte’s most attractive industrial submarkets.

“Because of the lack of new construction in this product type over the past several years, the existing vacancies in these buildings offer tenants a unique opportunity to lease shell condition, single-story office/warehouse space and design new, custom office and warehouse improvements per their specific requirements,” Wood noted. “We can accommodate tenants ranging in size from 6,400 to 96,000 square feet. The new ownership group is well capitalized, and we’re looking forward to bringing new momentum and energy to these Class A buildings.”
Trinity Capital Advisors CFO Sean McKinley is confident that the buildings’ institutional quality and prime location will prove attractive to tenants as the market continues to shift.
“We are excited about the opportunity to acquire these Class-A properties in an improving market, and look forward to working with the brokerage community to lease-up the current vacancy,” McKinley said.
For more information about Trinity Capital Advisors, please visit
Trinity Capital Advisors is a real estate investment firm that acquires and develops office, industrial, and mixed-use real estate in the Southeastern United States markets of North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, and Tennessee. Trinity Capital invests directly from its series of real estate investment funds, and also partners with institutional investors to build or improve the workplace real estate in which it invests. Trinity Capital’s investment platform has two primary competitive advantages: through its sister company, Trinity Partners, the firm is connected to the marketplace, making the majority of its investments off-market, and Trinity Capital’s operating platform puts the firm closer to each investment, allowing it to produce outstanding returns for investor partners. Trinity Capital is currently investing from Trinity Capital Value Fund III.

Cohnreznick Announces Partner/principal Elections

January 11, 2013 – New York, NY – CohnReznick LLP, the 11th largest accounting, tax, and advisory firm in the United States, announced the election of three new partners and three new principals this past Fall.
Mike Celkis, CPA, is a partner with the Firm’s Tax Practice in Austin, TX. Mike is responsible for providing domestic tax, financial accounting, and tax consulting services to individuals, corporations, and partnerships in a variety of industries. Mike has a Bachelor’s of Business Administration degree in Accounting and Master’s degree in Accounting from Eastern Michigan University.
Michael Harlow, CPA, is a partner with CohnReznick based in the Bethesda, MD office, who specializes in serving private enterprises. Michael has more than ten years of experience in public accounting, serving clients in attestation, accounting, and tax advisory roles, as well as extensive experience across multiple real estate related industries, including homebuilding, land development, residential management, commercial management, and land engineering.  Michael received his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and a Master’s in Accounting from North Carolina State University.
Cristi Lewis, CPA, is a partner in the Audit and Assurance Practice of CohnReznick’s Charlotte, NC office, and is a member of the Firm’s Construction Industry Practice. She has more than 15 years of public accounting experience and her industry expertise includes construction contractors, commercial real estate, residential multifamily housing, and governmental agencies. She has her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Patricia McGarr, MAI, CRE, FRICS, CRA, joined CohnReznick Advisory Group (“CRAG”) in January 2012 and leads the efforts of CRAG’s valuation advisory services to the commercial real estate industry. A principal based in the Firm’sChicago, IL office, she is a seasoned valuation professional and widely recognized for her knowledge as a real estate litigation consultant. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in General Studies from North Park University, and is a State Certified General Real Estate Appraiser in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, Florida, Texas, the District of Columbia, New Jersey, and California.
Nick Ratti is a principal in CohnReznick’s Boston, MA office, specializing in tax incented real estate transactions. He develops and evaluates transaction structures, provides tax compliance advice, evaluates tax credit recapture or tax-loss reallocation issues and provides syndication advisory services.  Nick has experience structuring a wide range of low-income housing, historic, and new market tax credit transactions. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Finance from Providence College.
Brett Weal is a principal in the Firm’s Commercial Real Estate and Renewable Energy Industry Practices in Atlanta, GA. During his time at CohnReznick, Brett has helped to negotiate more than one billion dollars worth of equity for tax credit transactions. His clients include major publicly-held Fortune 500 companies, non-profit housing organizations, and experienced real estate and renewable energy developers across the United States. Brett received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Emory University.
About CohnReznick
With origins dating back to 1919, CohnReznick LLP is currently the 11th largest accounting, tax and advisory firm in the United States, combining the resources and technical expertise of a national firm with the hands-on, entrepreneurial approach that today's dynamic business environment demands. The firm was formed out of the combination of J.H. Cohn and Reznick Group in October 2012. CohnReznick serves a large number of diverse industries and offers specialized services for Fortune 1000 companies, owner-managed firms, international enterprises, government agencies, not-for-profit organizations, and other key market sectors.

Headquartered in New York, NY, CohnReznick serves its clients with more than 280 partners, 2,000 employees and 25 offices nationwide. The firm is a member of Nexia International, a global network of independent accountancy, tax, and business advisors. For more information, visit

Wanda Townsend Of Johnston, Allison & Hord Recognized As 2013 Best Lawyers In America®

Wanda Townsend was selected to be included in Best Lawyers in America® for 2013 for her work in the practice area of  Banking and Finance and Real Estate Law.
Best Lawyers compiles an annual listing of outstanding attorneys through confidential peer-review surveys. Rankings included in the current 19th edition are based on nearly 4 million professional peer reviews.
For more information on Wanda Townsend and Johnston, Allison & Hord, please click here.
For more information on Best Lawyers, please click here.

The Center For Real Estate At Unc Charlotte Announced That It Will Be Offering Six Full-tuition Scholarships To The Msre Program For The 2013-2014 Aca

The scholarships, which each have a value in excess of $20,000 over the course of the program, are named in honor of three real estate industry leaders with close ties to the university:

  • Bissell Scholarships, named in honor of H.C. “Smoky” Bissell, will be awarded to individuals who have shown a keen interest in innovation;
  • Crosland Scholarships, named in honor of John Crosland Jr., will be awarded to foster the development of applicants who have exhibited leadership skills early in their careers;
  • Childress-Klein Scholarships, named in honor of Childress Klein Properties, will be awarded to those with a dedication to community stewardship.

For more information, please click here.

Holly Alexander Joins Office-leasing Team At Jones Lang Lasalle

Holly Alexander has joined the office-leasing team at Jones Lang LaSalle as a senior associate.

She previously was the director of business development at Concorde Construction Co. At JLL, Alexander will work with Charles JonasCharley Leavitt and Tom Fitzgerald on leasing more than 2.5 million square feet of office space in the market, including properties such as Fifth Third Center, 200 and 201 South Tryon Street and the two Fairview Center buildings in SouthPark.