By Jen Wilson – Associate Editor, Charlotte Business Journal
As the Charlotte region’s development boom continues, each year brings projects ranging from office buildings to mixed-use centers and multifamily communities to hospitality assets. The Charlotte Business Journal seeks to highlight the best projects in the Heavy Hitters Commercial Real Estate Awards program, now in its ninth year.
As part of the program, CBJ honors one prominent executive in the local commercial real estate sector with the Pillar Award. This lifetime achievement award is given to an individual who’s made a big impact in the industry through their leadership, professional accomplishments and community involvement.
Chosen to receive the Pillar Award in 2022 is Fred Klein, founding partner of Childress Klein.
Since launching Childress Klein in 1988 with co-founder Don Childress, Klein has helped build the firm into the powerhouse it is today. The company develops, manages and provides oversight for 450-plus properties, totaling over 51 million square feet, according to its website. It is among the largest commercial real estate firms in the Charlotte area, with prominent current projects including the Duke Energy Plaza office tower uptown, the Lowe’s Tech Hub building in South End and The Concourse, a mixed-use development in the Steele Creek area. Notable past projects have ranged from One Wells Fargo Center, 550 South Tryon and the Charlotte Plaza building in center city to parts of Waverly, the LakePointe Office Park and warehouse and industrial space around the region.
Prior to forming Childress Klein, which now has roughly 250 employees, Klein was a regional partner for Trammell Crow Co. — the largest commercial real estate firm in the nation at the time. He also served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and earned an M.B.A. with distinction from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. His civic activities include serving as a trustee for UNC Charlotte and the YMCA of Greater Charlotte and, formerly, as board member of the North Carolina Railroad. Klein is also a member of the Charlotte Region Commercial Board of Realtors.
He joins a list of past Pillar Award winners that includes: Todd Mansfield, who retired last year as CEO of Crescent Communities, in 2021; Bob Bertges, formerly a top real estate executive at Wells Fargo & Co.; architect David Furman; Smoky Bissell, chairman of The Bissell Cos.; Tony Pressley, former CEO of MECA Real Estate Services; Johnny Harris, chairman of Lincoln Harris; and the late H. Allen Tate Jr., founder of the Allen Tate Cos.
Aside from the Pillar Award, 25 development projects have been chosen as finalists across 10 categories. These developments have been substantially completed between July 1, 2021, and June 30 of this year.
CBJ will celebrate all the honorees and reveal a winner in each category at an awards event set for Oct. 27 at Charlotte Marriott City Center.
Here are the finalists in all categories:
Top Adaptive-Reuse Development
Top Apartment or Condominium Development
Top Civic/Nonprofit Development
Top Flex Development
Top Health-Care Development
Top Hospitality Development
Top Mixed-Use Development
Top Office Development
Top Space Build-Out Project
Top Warehouse Development
Read this article as it originally appears in the Charlotte Business Journal.