Deadline Fast Approaching for Pinnacle Awards

By Sarah Baker

The Memphis Area Association of Realtors Commercial Council is well under way in planning the 12th annual Pinnacle Awards ceremony, a night dedicated to showcasing commercial real estate industry professionals in the area.

The deadline for Commercial Council members to enter the contest is Feb. 15. Winners will be honored at an April 25 ceremony at the Memphis County Club, 600 Goodwyn St.

Started in 2002, the Pinnacle Awards honor the highest-producing commercial brokers in Memphis for the previous year in a number of categories, including the President’s Award, Newcomer of the Year and an inductee to the Commercial Hall of Fame.

Winners will be announced in a supplement of the April 26 issue of The Daily News and the April 26 issue of The Memphis News. The Daily News Publishing Co. Inc., parent company of The Daily News and The Memphis News, is again sponsoring the Pinnacle Awards.

Memphis Country Club is a new venue for the Pinnacle Awards after being held at the Holiday Inn University of Memphis in recent years.

“It’s a refreshing part of the awards this year,” said Tony Argiro, leasing representative at Highwoods Properties Inc. and co-chairman of the Pinnacle Awards. “The night is about not only celebrating people who have been successful in our industry over the past year, but also just bringing everyone together from the various trades if you will.

“It’s getting all of the industrial, office, retail, land brokers in the city in the same room, and then also several of our other people like appraisers and bankers, too – it’s more of a networking experience as well.”

MAAR Commercial Council will again be celebrating the Pinnacle Producers Club, as well as the Pinnacle Producers Club Life Members – those who have been elected to the Top 25 Pinnacle Awards List for any five years.

Up to three top producers in each real estate category will be recognized as members of the Pinnacle Elite. The top producers will be recognized as Brokers of the Year for their area of production (retail, office, industrial, land, investment). All of the members of the Pinnacle Elite will be recognized on stage and will receive plaques.

Last year, MAAR Commercial Council presented 24 Pinnacle Elite awards to brokers whose transactions produced more than $913.5 million – $70 million more revenue than in 2011.

All commercial brokers who hold membership in the Commercial Council are encouraged to submit an application by 5 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15. The rules have not changed since they were revamped in 2010.

Applicants must have produced new real estate brokerage business of $2 million or more during 2012. It’s based off of the actual lease value created per broker or the cumulative total of larger sales as well. For instance, a five-year-lease for 10,000 square feet and $20 per foot would yield a lease value of $200,000.

Argiro said at this stage, most applicants are in the process of getting organized and reviewing their 2012 transactions.

“I don’t wait until the last minute to apply,” Argiro said. “It does require a little bit of work when you have to go back and kind of cull through all of your transactions from the past year. To make sure you find the exact information, you have to kind of carve out a little bit of time to do that, which is a good problem to have.”

An application fee of $75 must be submitted with each application. This fee covers the cost of your Pinnacle Awards reception ticket.

Applications are available for download at Co-chairmen Steve Guinn (683-2444) and Argiro (761-8190) can answer any questions about the application process.

Applications, signed by the principal broker, are confidentially submitted to Buddy Dearman of Dixon Hughes PLLC, 999 South Shady Grove Road, suite 400, Memphis, TN 38120.

A signed PDF may also be emailed to Buddy Dearman at The anonymity is a large reason applicants are so comfortable in submitting their production information.