The Minnesota Commercial Association of Realtors (MNCAR) awarded Welsh with three significant awards at Thursday night’s award ceremony. NAI Welsh Senior Vice President John Johannson received their highest honor, Broker of the Year, Associate Judd Welliver was named the 2010 Rising Star, and Senior Vice Presidents Bill Ritter and Mike Perkins won “Industrial Transaction of the Year” for their contribution to the Lifetouch lease at the 35/13 Crossing building.

Broker of the Year
MNCAR’s Broker of the Year award recognizes a real estate veteran who demonstrates a high level of professional conduct, has a significant level of production, has contributed to the profession, and actively participates in other business, civic and community activities. The same criterion applies to the Rising Star award, which recognizes an up-and-coming professional.

Over the past 20+ years, Johannson has sold or leased over ten million square feet of retail space, 370 acres of commercial land, and approximately 12 shopping centers exceeding 1.2 million square feet in the Twin Cities. He owns a 1.2 million-square-foot retail portfolio, and has developed nearly three million square feet of owned retail space.

Johannson is a member of the XTeam, the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), the Minnesota Shopping Center Association (MSCA) and MNCAR, and also serves on the University of St. Thomas Real Estate Advisory Board. He is an active member at Spring Hill, Interlachen and Minikahda Country Clubs, and coaches his two son’s hockey teams.

Perhaps one of Johannson’s strongest qualities is his devotion to other’s success. According to Welsh’s Executive Chairman Dennis Doyle, “John has been instrumental in providing Welsh colleagues with support and mentorship. He has continually stepped up to take on the role of mentor, and as such, is often considered the go-to guy when others need help or support. He is a true partner in every sense of the word.”

Rising Star of the Year
A third-generation real estate professional, Judd Welliver has consistently ranked as one of Welsh’s top producing brokers in transaction volume since 2006, and in 2007 was named Rookie of the Year. He averages 50 transactions per year, and in the past 12 months has completed over 65 deals totaling more than 700,000 square feet. He has many repeat clients, which speaks to his high level of professionalism.
Welliver is a presenter for the University of St. Thomas Real Estate Society, serves on MNCAR’s Community Relations Board, and coaches St. Paul Highland Park’s Bantam A’s youth hockey team.

Industrial Transaction of the Year
NAI Welsh Senior Vice Presidents Mike Perkins and Bill Ritter received the “Industrial Transaction of the Year” for their significant contribution to the Lifetouch lease in Burnsville. Ritter and Perkins represented the Minnesota-based school portrait company, Lifetouch, in a long term, 100,480-square-foot lease transaction at United Properties/Kennedy Associates’ 35/13 Crossing office warehouse building in Burnsville, located near Interstate 35W and Highway 13.

Lifetouch was looking to consolidate three of its west metro operations into one building, and 35/13 Crossing complex was one of the few properties that met the tenant’s requirements.  The lease began in July 2010 and is now used as Lifetouch’s camera-support and studio-technical services, its distribution warehouse and picture-taking kit assembly. Lifetouch moved approximately 100 people in technical and distribution jobs which did not affect the company’s headquarters on I-494 in Eden Prairie.

The lease brought the 180,000-square-foot, two-building complex to 97% occupancy. Ritter and Perkins worked with the NorthMarq team of Kris Smeltzer and Lonnie Provencher, who represented United Properties/Kennedy Associates.