DALLAS-Taking its 2007 hires to an even dozen, Grubb & Ellis Co. has added two top executives to its local upper-management roster. The dual-pronged move fills the last two top-tier slots for the offensive push to beef up its third party-leasing assignments.

R.M. Jack Jones III, a 20-year veteran, is Grubb & Ellis’ new vice president and director of management services, stepping into a long-time vacant slot for the local office plus Austin and San Antonio. Michael E. Toon, with 30 years in the industry, has been named senior vice president of the office services group, filling in a hole created in fall 2006 when Moody Younger joined Trammell Crow Co. and then transitioned into the CB Richard Ellis ranks.

“I personally envision us being very well rounded to handle all the disciplines of investment and be able to do all product types,” David Richards, senior vice president and managing director in Dallas, tells GlobeSt.com. “I believe we’ve got the right leadership in place.”

Jones, who is Richards’ equivalent in the executive ranks, spent the past three years as group property manager for Berwind, PA-based Brandywine Realty Trust. Toon had been vice president of leasing for Chicago-based Trizec Properties Inc. before its $9-billion sale to New York City powerhouses, the Blackstone Group and Brookfield Properties Corp. Toon’s long-time charge had been to oversee Plaza of the Americas at 600 and 700 N. Pearl St. and Renaissance Tower at 1201 Elm St. in the Dallas CBD. The two men, who worked together in 1999 at Trizec, are doing so again to rebuild Grubb & Ellis’ third-party platform in the metroplex after losing its foothold with Younger’s exit.

Richards says the regrouping isn’t a direct offshoot of Grubb & Ellis’ upcoming merger with the Santa Ana, CA-based Triple Net Realty Advisors Inc., but it’s sure to aid the initiative by having strong property management and office project leasing teams in place since NNN owns so much real estate in the state. The merger is expected to close in October.

Grubb & Ellis’ Dallas team currently leases four office buildings with 1.5 million sf in the metroplex, including one owned by the $1-billion, fully funded Grubb & Ellis Realty Advisors. “And, they definitely want to own more in this market,” Richards says about the project and property management teams’ prospects for the future.

Toon will lead a five-member project leasing team, aligning with Jones’ group, which Richards likes to refer to as “the offensive linemen of the real estate business.” The hires shore up the top-tier ranks, but Richards says he’s still in the hiring mode for the 34-broker office. As for the latest move, he says “Mike and Jack’s addition will positively redirect Grubb & Ellis’ asset services in North Texas.”

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