CB Richard Ellis' local leader declined to comment on theunrelated exits by Hunter Blanks, a senior vice president, andFrank Ricca, managing director of a Fort Worth office that waslaunched lastAugust, with post-merger reins being shared by managingdirector Bob Scully. Blanks has become an executive vice presidentwith Colliers International Inc.'s local team, including a leadingrole nationally for a specialty group, and Ricca has been namedmanaging director for Jones Lang LaSalle.

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Blanks and Ricca stressed it was "opportunity" that lured themand not any issues related to the CBRE-Trammell Crow Co. merger.Blanks, in fact, had put CBRE on notice in December 2006 that heintended to shop the market. Ricca says his chance came upunexpectedly after his JLL friends met with company leaders inChicago who then came to him with a job. "I really was notlooking," Ricca says.

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"CB has been very supportive of me in this transition," Blankssays. His future calls for building a tenant rep team dedicated tothe legal profession while Ricca is laying the groundwork for aJLL-flagged office in Fort Worth.

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Blanks, who's spent 25 years mostly doing law firm work, tellsGlobeSt.com that he will be helping to draft a company platform tobuild teams locally and nationally for the specialty brokeragefield. "My intent is over a short of period of time as is possibleto help organize people similar to me throughout the Colliersorganization," he says.

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Blanks is targeting cities like Dallas and Houston filled withAM 100 and AM 200 law firms, the equivalent of being aFortune 100 or Fortune 500 corporation. The sweetspots to the leases are their terms and the caliber and size ofspace that they command.

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Law firms have kept the Downtown leasing market particularlyactive in the past year in a traditional deal flow of newcomers,in-town relocations and spin-offs. "We've had a window of prettystrong activity in the past 36 months that I don't think will beduplicated over the next 36 months," Blanks says.

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Blanks, who left CBRE after a decade, is being reunited withcolleagues from the former Fults Cos., where he spent 16 years inhis rise to principal and executive vice president. "Hunter is apremier specialist in legal and general office tenantrepresentation in the region and we are extraordinarily excited forhim to join the Colliers team," Mark Noble, managing director inDallas, says in a press release. Blanks' track record spans morethan 200 transactions exceeding more than five million sf, of whichhalf were law firm leases.

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Ricca's focus clearly is Fort Worth, Tarrant County and westernportions of Dallas--a long-time niche for the well-known tenantrep. "He is perennially an industry 'heavy hitter.' Moreimportantly, Frank is a very experienced businessman who is also anexpert in tenant representation for major corporations andprofessional service firms," David Carroll, JLL's Dallas marketdirector, says in its press release.

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Ricca, with more than 22 years in the business, joined CBRE lastyear after spending his entire career at the Staubach Co. inDallas. His track record exceeds 15 million sf locally andnationally.

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