Innovative Leaders Vanderstraaten and Rohrman Inducted into North Texas Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame; Fraker and Grunnah Honored with Lifetime Achievement Awards

The new Hall of Fame inductees are Bill Vanderstraaten and Scott Rohrman. In addition, Jack Fraker and Robert Grunnah received lifetime achievement awards at the May 1 awards presentation.

Two innovative leaders in local real estate have been inducted into the 36th annual North Texas Commercial Real Estate Hall of Fame in cooperation with NTCAR. Bill Vanderstraaten and Scott Rohrman were inducted in an event May 1 at the Arts District Mansion in downtown Dallas.

“North Texas is known as one of the best real estate regions in the U.S., and both Bill Vanderstraaten and Scott Rohman have contributed greatly to that reputation. We’re delighted to induct these exceptional leaders into the NTCAR Hall of Fame,” Robert Grunnah, co-founder and chairman emeritus of the 37-year-old Hall of Fame event, said in a statement.

Vanderstraaten, president of Chief Partners LP, is known for a national portfolio that includes Fields, a Frisco land purchase that is home to the PGA of America’s new national headquarters, and Clearfork, a mixed-use development in Fort Worth.

NTCAR said that Rohrman, of 42 Real Estate LLC, developed a reputation for his build-to-suit projects across the U.S. and his efforts to reshape Deep Ellum while preserving its historic essence.

Two are given lifetime achievement award winners

At the May 1 event, Jack Fraker, president and global head of industrial and logistics capital markets for Newmark, received the Michael F. McAuley Lifetime Achievement Award, presented to an individual who has dedicated countless hours to his or her community, professional organizations committed to the real estate industry, and charitable pursuits during their professional real estate career.

Grunnah, a respected real estate leader and one of the three co-founders of the Hall of Fame, received a Michael F. McAuley Lifetime Achievement Award for his deep commitment to the profession.

NTCAR said that Vanderstraaten was introduced by Hall of Fame Executive Committee member Greg Cannon and inducted by Andrew Levy. Rohrman was introduced by Hall of Fame Executive Committee member Lynn Dowdle and inducted by Bill Cawley. Ran Holman presented the McAuley Award to Fraker. Hall of Fame co-founders Chris Teesdale and Darrell Hurmis presented the McAuley Award to Grunnah.

Hurmis served as the event chair, NTCAR said, and Hall of Fame Executive Committee member Bill Cox emceed the event.

Known for ‘cutting-edge projects’

Vanderstraaten founded Chief Partners LP in 2007 in partnership with Trevor Rees-Jones and the Rees-Jones family.

A commercial real estate investment firm, Chief Partners focuses on teaming with best-in-class operators across the country, producing a successful portfolio of currently over 80 separate investments via 30-plus operating partners. During its history, Chief has placed more than $1.1 billion of equity and currently has $1.4 billion in assets under management, NTCAR said.

Another 110 investments have gone full circle, more than doubling Chief’s net returns. The team at Chief and its partners have completed 3.64 million feet of development since inception along with 3.43 million feet of value-added repositioned assets. Chief also invests in growth markets across the nation with concentrations in multifamily, industrial, retail, medical office, land, data center and self-storage.

Before founding Chief Partners, Vanderstraaten was an original Fund I partner of Thackeray Partners (now Greystar), a real estate private equity firm. Before that, he worked for CarrAmerica beginning in 1997 and joined Harwood International (previously SPG International) after graduating from SMU.

“Bill’s activity in the real estate community has reached far and wide by developing invaluable partnerships in many cutting-edge projects, including the iconic Fields Ranch that will exceed $5 billion of build-out valuation,” Hall of Fame Executive Committee member Greg Cannon said in a statement. “Additionally, Bill’s service to the Dallas area community and SMU is extraordinary.”

Community-driven approach in Deep Ellum

Photo: Deep Ellum Foundation

Rohrman and his 42 Real Estate team focus on a wide gamut of real estate initiatives—from industrial and land investment/development projects to urban re-development and pro-bono projects, NTCAR said. Rohrman’s build-to-suit efforts span 40 states and Canada, and his clients include Dick’s Sporting Goods, Best Buy, 24 Hour Fitness, Tractor Supply, FedEx, Frito-Lay, and UnitedHealthcare.

42 also invests in land and speculative industrial projects, with about 10 million square feet of planned or owned land.

Rohrman’s passion includes Dallas’ Deep Ellum, which celebrates its 150th anniversary this year.

A decade ago, Rohrman assembled over 55 parcels while taking a community-driven rather than profit-driven approach with the re-development. Along with restoring the remaining vintage buildings, he was behind the 42 murals program where local artists—from 14-year-old students to beginner and veteran painters—added colorful, often powerful and edgy, topical messages. The murals have enhanced the quirky historic district known a century ago as the live music capital of North Texas. His firm also controls more than 15 properties in The Cedars and 16 properties in downtown Dallas.

Rohrman started his career at Henry S. Miller Co./Grubb & Ellis, moving to The Stratford Group and Fischer & Co. Known for his pro-bono and charity work, Rohrman helped develop St. Philip’s School and Community Center’s 12,000-square-foot retail building and acquired lots for several nonprofits’ low-income housing.

Rohrman mentors young professionals, is an elder in his church, and has served on the boards of Circle Ten Council of Boy Scouts of America, Downtown Dallas Inc., The Real Estate Council (TREC), Deep Ellum Foundation, and Carry The Load.

He also served on the State of Texas School Land Board, which oversaw a $6.2 billion portfolio and more than 13 million acres in Texas, benefiting for public schoolchildren in grades PreK-12.

“Scott’s vision and creativity—unparalleled in this industry—are the catalyst for his legacy projects, yet his flawless leadership skills and love for people are his number one priority,” Dowdle said. “Always going the extra mile to inspire others, Scott is a difference-maker, and that’s a benchmark of his huge success.”

Lifetime Achievement Award recipients and event sponsors

Michael F. McAuley Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Fraker has led a distinguished career at Newmark.

In addition to having served on the board of governors of the ULI, he was a board member and adjunct professor for SMU and The University of Texas Business School.

“Jack’s contributions epitomize the gold standards with which this award represents,” said Darrell Hurmis, a co-founder and member of the NTCAR Hall of Fame Executive Committee. “A standout in every respect, he has given back to his community and shaped our industry in so many wonderful ways.”

Grunnah, the second McAuley Award recipient, is a respected commercial real estate veteran whose career spans six decades. Known as a dedicated mentor and adviser who shaped the careers of numerous real estate leaders, Grunnah’s many achievements include serving as president of the investments/land division of Henry S. Miller Companies from 1994 to 2014.

Title sponsors for the 2024 Hall of Fame event were FIELDS and KFM Engineering & Design. Platinum Table Sponsors were Arlington EDC; Benchmark Title; Broadway Bank; Champion Partners; Chief Partners L.P.; Happy State Bank; Hillwood, A Perot Company; Huffines Communities and Huffines Enterprises; Jackson-Shaw Company; KDC; Lincoln Property Company; M. Terry Enterprises; Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr, P.C.; NEWMARK; OHT Partners; Oncor; Rees-Jones Holdings, LLC; Republic Title; Rosewood Property Company; Skybox Datacenters; Texas Capital; and Weber & Company. Gold Sponsors are City of Mesquite; Columbus Realty Partners; DB Urban, LLC; Folsom Properties; Henry S. Miller; Invesco Real Estate; MacCo Builders; McGuire, Craddock & Strother, PC; PlainsCapital Bank; Primera Companies, Inc.; Ryan Companies US, Inc.; Spencer Fane LLP; TRANSWESTERN; The Real Estate Council; and Younger Partners.

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