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UC Real Estate Center celebrates 30 years at annual dinner

Center recognizes Jerry Atkins, ’81, as Distinguished Real Estate Service honoree and Zac Moore, ’19, as Undergraduate Student of the Year

The 30th annual dinner of the University of Cincinnati Real Estate Center, a research center in the Carl H. Lindner College of Business, attracted more than 650 representatives from the real estate industry to celebrate the accomplishments of the center, program, faculty, staff and distinguished students and alumni on Wednesday, June 5.

A woman with blond hair and a red suit and a man in a suite with a red tie speak at separate podiums on a stage in a banquet room with guests seated at tables

Kay Geiger (left), president at PNC Bank, Greater Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky, and Shaun Bond (right), executive director of the Real Estate Center, give opening remarks for the 30th Annual Real Estate Dinner. Photo/Jay Yocis/UC Creative Services

In the program’s opening remarks, Real Estate Center Executive Director Shaun Bond expressed his gratitude for the close connections between the center and business community — from those communications that began three decades ago that led to the first annual dinner to the partnerships that were initiated as recently as this year.

“Lindner’s real estate program is considered among the top real estate programs in the country, and a big part of that is the support we have from our partners, sponsors and everyone here tonight,” said Bond. “Thank you for all you do.”

UC Foundation President Peter Landgren underscored the importance of centers like the UC Real Estate center in contributing to the university’s overall economic impact in the region. For example, since 2014, the Board of Executive Advisors in Real Estate (BEARE) has contributed $1.5 million to guide the real estate program and create opportunities for students and partners alike.

Lindner’s real estate program is considered among the top real estate programs in the country, and a big part of that is the support we have from our partners and sponsors. Thank you for all you do.

Shaun Bond Executive Director, UC Real Estate Center

Landgren also introduced the UC Real Estate Center’s recipient of the Undergraduate Student of the Year Award, Zac Moore, BBA ’19. This award honors outstanding students who demonstrate academic success, visionary leadership and active involvement in the campus community and campus activities. A Kolodzik Business Scholar earning dual degrees in real estate and finance, Moore was a natural servant leader during his time at UC, jumping into his roles as president of the UC Real Estate Association (UCREA) for the 2017-18 academic year, vice president of alumni relations for the Student Alumni Council and active member of the Cincinnatus Honorary Society and Men of METRO.

Three men stand and smile and the middle one holds a framed award

Left to right: UC Foundation President Peter Landgren, Undergraduate Student of the Year Zac Moore, BBA ’19, and Real Estate Center Executive Director Shaun Bond. Photo/Jay Yocis/UC Creative Services

“We are proud of all our of 6,000 students at the Lindner College of Business, but tonight, we are celebrating one,” said Landgren. “Zac, you embody everything that it means to be a bold bearcat.”

In his acceptance speech, Moore expressed his gratitude for the different learning and networking opportunities he was able to experience through the UC Real Estate Center.

“As we all know, real estate is a relationship-driven business,” said Moore. “Perhaps the greatest gift in all this was the chance to work with and learn from so many people associated with the center. I’m honored to be recognized in front of those I personally admire tonight.”

Another evening highlight was the presentation of the Distinguished Real Estate Service Award to Jerry Atkins, BA ’81, senior vice president at Bellwether Enterprise. 

This award recognizes an individual who has best exemplified both an entrepreneurial spirit and concern for the community. Atkins’ longtime friend and former colleague Rusty Myers, Executive Vice President at JLL, spoke about the many hats Atkins has worn in his life and career — broker, developer, owner, property manager, consultant, friend and family member.

“Remember this one word: impact,” said Myers. “It is fitting that this is the name of one of Jerry’s real estate entities. This word defines what he is all about in the world of real estate, in our community through his philanthropy and volunteerism, and personally as a father, husband, brother, son and friend.”

Remember this one word: Impact. ... This word defines what [Jerry Akins] is all about in the world of real estate, in our community through his philanthropy and volunteerism, and personally as a father, husband, brother, son and friend.

Rusty Myers Executive Vice President at JLL

Three men stand and smile and the middle one holds a framed award

Left to right: Rusty Myers, Executive Vice President at JLL, Distinguished Real Estate Service Award recipient Jerry Atkins, BA ’81 and Senior Vice President at Bellwether Enterprise, and Real Estate Center Executive Director Shaun Bond. Photo/Jay Yocis/UC Creative Services

Upon accepting his award, Atkins expressed his appreciation to have so many colleagues, friends and family members from the many chapters of his life present that evening. He told stories about some of the significant capital projects from his career. He also spoke about life’s challenges and what it means to be a servant leader, even in times of adversity.

“Look for the first responders in your life,” said Atkins. “I’ve had the opportunity to work with people who may have been going through some challenges or adversity, then you may have challenges or circumstances that unravel your world. All these people have been first responders for me. Hearing that ‘I’ve got you,’ means something.”

Join us in congratulating this year’s honorees:

  • Jerry Atkins, BA ’81, Senior Vice President at Bellwether Enterprise – Distinguished Real Estate Service Award
  • Zac Moore, BBA ’19 – Undergraduate Student of the Year Award
Large group of people involved with Real Estate Center stand and smile on stage

The 30th annual Real Estate Center Dinner celebrated distinguished alumni, partners and students. Photo/Jay Yocis/UC Creative Services

The UC Real Estate Center would also like to thank this year’s sponsors and partners:

Premier Partner
PNC Bank

Platinum Partner
Eagle Realty Group LLC

Gold Partners
BB&T Bank
First Financial Bank
Hills Properties Incorporated
Neyer Properties, Inc.
North American Properties, Inc.
Northpointe Group
Procter & Gamble

Dinner guests in business professional attire stand and smile next to bearcat mascot

Dinner attendees networked at the reception, with Mr. Bearcat even making an appearance. Photo/Jay Yocis/UC Creative Services

Cocktail Reception Sponsor
Eagle Realty Group LLC

Dessert Reception Sponsor
Capital Investment Group, Inc.

Corporate Dinner Sponsors
Beacon Real Estate
Bellwether Enterprise Real Estate Capital, LLC
Castellini Group of Companies
MSA Design
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP

Bearcat Dinner Sponsors
Corporex
Cushman & Wakefield
DMG Companies
Heritage Bank
Kroger
Newmark Knight Frank
PLK Communities

Individual Dinner Sponsors
Cincinnati Center City Development Corporation (3CDC)
Aronoff, Rosen & Hunt, LPA
Cincinnati Commercial Contracting
Cintech Construction, Inc.
Commonwealth Land Title Insurance Company
Fath Properties
First Highland Management & Development, Inc.
Gaslight Property
Global Property Management Group (GPMG, Inc.)
Oswald Company, Inc.
Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP
Terrex Development & Construction

Media Sponsor
Cincinnati Business Courier

Featured image: Jerry Atkins, BA ’81, Senior Vice President at Bellwether Enterprise stands next to UC Real Estate Center Executive Director Shaun Bond. Atkins was the recipient of the 2019 Distinguished Real Estate Service Award. Photo/Jay Yocis/UC Creative Services

Become involved with the UC Real Estate Center

The UC Real Estate Center sits at the intersection of industry leaders, students, academic programs, high quality research and the business community. As a resource for students and industry leaders, the center offers a variety of programs and opportunities for professional development, networking and corporate engagement. Learn more at the Real Estate Center's website.