To position the Chapter as the premier commercial real estate organization for Southern Nevada by enhancing the value of the CCIM designation and increasing the number of designees and candidates through professionalism and educational excellence.
Here’s what “I Am a CCIM” means to these designees:
“It means that I should know better. It means that I have more detailed reasons why somebody should or shouldn’t do a deal. I should be able to help eliminate risk and help my clients make better decisions.”
“It means I’m proud of my accomplishments. I’m proud of wearing the pin and displaying that I have knowledge of commercial investment real estate.”
“It means that I believe knowledge and integrity are the keys to professionalism.”
“It means everything I do is upheld to the highest standard of ethics.”
“It means immediate credibility in the business. It means bringing a high level of understanding and skills to the table.”
According to Jarrad Katz, the CCIM organization deserves much credit in regards to the launch and course of his successful commercial real estate career. CCIM gave him his start and led to him meeting some of his strongest business colleagues. It also resulted in him becoming a principal of the firm, MDL Group in Las Vegas, where he’s the senior vice president and works in the industrial (in which he specializes) and office sectors.
“CCIM gave me so much,” he said, having been pinned in 2010. “I doubt I’d be at this point in my career without it. People on the board reached out, gave me a hand and helped me get where I am.”
Along with Katz, only 83 of about 500 purely commercial real estate agents in Southern Nevada have the Certified Commercial Investment Member designation. But what exactly does being a CCIM signify?
Being a CCIM means … Meeting Tough Requirements
To earn the CCIM designation, candidates must fulfill an extensive curriculum that includes classes in financial analysis, market analysis, user decision analysis, investment analysis and ethics along with negotiations training. They must submit a portfolio of qualifying experience—transactions or consultations that meet certain monetary and time standards—and pass a comprehensive examination. This set of requirements ensures that designees are proficient in both theory and practice. Once they’re met, candidates received the designation, a lapel pin to denote their achievement and a host of related benefits. To maintain the credential, designees must maintain strict ethical and professional standards throughout their career.
Individuals who qualify to earn the designation include those whose real estate work is commercial focused and transaction based. Typically, they include brokers, lenders, property managers and title agents.
“I am proud to be a CCIM because it wasn’t easy. It involved a large time commitment and a lot of learning and also commercial real estate experience,” said Robin Civish, 2015 president of the Southern Nevada CCIM chapter and a designee since 2009. Specializing in the retail sector, she’s also a senior associate at Voit Real Estate Services, a commercial brokerage and property management firm in Las Vegas.
Being a CCIM means … Instant Credibility and Respect
The CCIM designation, whether conveyed through the pin, on letterhead or in an e-mail signature, affords designees instant recognition as industry experts. It indicates they’ve accomplished the necessary requirements to attain such standing and, as such, often are held in higher regard when compared to their peers. It also opens doors to clients and colleagues due to the inherent trust of CCIMs that comes before even working with them. Sometimes, CCIMs are invited to do business simply because of the four letters after their name.
“The designation provided a lot of clout for me as a young professional,” said Ryan Martin, who is a Designation Promotion Committee member and a CCIM since 2006. He’s also the senior vice president specializing in office leasing and sales at Colliers International, Las Vegas, a commercial real estate company. “It showed competitors I understood the business, knew how to underwrite financial models and knew how to evaluate different opportunities in commercial real estate.”
The designation supports CCIMs when they express their opinions or take action. When involved in a transaction, they’re able to confidently challenge both parties when appropriate, using data and proof to defend their case.
“It gives me more confidence to analyze deals and to speak my mind with some sort of authority,” said Brian Sorrentino, a board member and chair of the Programs Committee of the local CCIM chapter, who was pinned in 2010. He’s also the director of Las Vegas-based ROI Commercial Real Estate, where he specializes in the retail market.
Being a CCIM means … An Immediate Network
The Southern Nevada CCIM Chapter consists of 250 members. Along with CCIM designees, they include affiliates, who encompass non-designee leasing professionals, investment counselors, asset managers, appraisers, corporate real estate executives, developers, institutional investors, attorneys, architects, general contractors and other allied professionals. Candidates are individuals working toward the pin. Anyone can join the chapter and participate in its local events. The chapter’s Membership Committee is responsible for growing the body.
The local chapter is part of the CCIM Institute, which encompasses about 13,000 non-designee members who are located in 100 markets and 30 countries worldwide.
The overall network affords designees a referral base and a national reach and expands their area of influence into various commercial real estate-related segments. It allows them to get to know, interact and work with other members, form lasting bonds and build contacts, locally, nationally and globally.
“The CCIM chapter and institute have just been a great network platform for me. It’s opened doors to a lot of relationships, and it’s great to do business with other CCIMs throughout the U.S.,” said Phillip Dunning, a CCIM since 2011, the chapter’s secretary/treasurer and a senior associate specializing in retail investment sales at Colliers International, Las Vegas.
When given a choice, CCIMs tend to gravitate toward working with their kind because they have instant rapport and know other members are well qualified.
“We are both starting on the same playing field,” said Sorrentino, who’s closed numerous transactions with designees. “We can eliminate a lot of small steps in order to get to the real points of negotiation and can flesh out a deal. It’s really great.”
Being a CCIM means … Networking and Social Opportunities
The local chapter holds monthly educational luncheons and a handful of fun events each year.
“As a commercial real estate agent, your peers are also your customers,” Civish said. “The networking that we do at our monthly lunches and other events help us get to know each other. When you know somebody, you’re more willing to do business with them.”
Eight of each year’s luncheons feature panelists or speakers on a relevant hot topic, such as master-planned communities or the local office market—all designed, scheduled and run by the Programs Committee. About 150 people attend these open-to-the-public events. The September luncheon is an annual joint mixer with Commercial Alliance. December’s is a holiday event where awards are bestowed and the next year’s officers are installed.
“We are trying to draw a crowd to educate them about what’s going on in the local market or maybe our local news,” Dunning said. “We do our best to make it impactful.”
Two annual social events that serve as fundraisers for the chapter’s designated charities and its scholarship fund are the poker tournament, handled by the Networking/Social Events Committee, and the wine tasting. The latter, organized by the Wine Committee, is a popular event with a silent auction, raffle and cash prizes. Last year, it yielded over $13,500 for the chapter, most of which went to local charities. This year, the 19th Annual Wine Tasting & Silent Auction, to be held in October, will boast a “Mad Men” theme.
Being a CCIM means … Access to Tools and Education
A major benefit of being a CCIM is the array of analytical and informational tools available to them. The CCIM Institute supplies financial worksheets, for sales and cash flow for instance; legislative news and updates; and research reports on trends in investment real estate nationally and in local markets.
Site To Do Business is hugely popular for members. It’s an integrated online service that provides information that can be used to analyze and compare the past, present and future trends of properties and geographical areas. Using information it aggregates from various databases, CCIM designees can retrieve, visualize, create, manage and analyze more than 100 reports and documents for a specific location. Those include topography, flood and other map, demographics, business information, consumer expenditures, financial data, aerials, retail market potential, crime, environmental reports, growth trends, employment data and more.
The Education Committee oversees and offers two to four classes locally each year. Numerous courses are available, too, online via Life After The Pin—such as User Cost of Occupancy Analysis, Real Estate Financial Analysis Using Excel and Creating Reliable Valuations—at a discount for designees. All geared toward commercial real estate, they’re relevant and highly educational.
Being a CCIM means … Giving Back
The Southern Nevada chapter donates the bulk of the money it raises during the year to at-risk school John S. Park Elementary in Las Vegas.
In addtion some of the chapter’s donations fund scholarships for local candidates, either to help cover the cost of the core classes (a $1,000 and $1,500 gift) or the review and examination (a $300 gift). This year, five individuals will receive some type of financial assistance. The Scholarship Committee manages this component.
In another of its charitable efforts, the local chapter gives one book in the name of every panelist who’s participated in the luncheons over the prior 12 months to Spread the Word Nevada. This organization helps advance early childhood literacy by getting books into the hands and homes of children within Southern Nevada’s at-risk, low-income communities.
Finally, during the CCIM Institute’s national Community Caring in Motion week, during which every chapter shows community support, local members volunteer at the Three Square Food Bank. About 40 already have signed up to help prepare meals this year.
Designees may also contribute by serving on a committee or the board of the Southern Nevada chapter and/or getting involved at the national level.
Being a CCIM means … Getting Exposure
The Designation Promotion Committee works to ensure the chapter’s CCIM designees and the designation itself are promoted and recognized. For instance, it helps disseminate information about who local designees are and what they’re accomplishing in addition to the benefits of doing business with them. The local bi-monthly newsletter, Perspective, which is archived online, highlights CCIM’s recent deal makers. The Newsletter Committee creates and distributes this publication, which also incorporates a message from the president, event information and articles written by the Legislative Affairs Committee about relevant legislative and legal developments at the local and state levels.
The Institute’s Commercial Investment Real Estate (CIRE) bi-monthly magazine also contains large transactions done which gives the involved CCIMs national recognition. The publication, which is another perk for designees, includes current events, legislative issues, state and federal public policy, industry trends, challenges that could affect business and strategic advice.
The Communications Committee is tasked with coordinating and maintaining the chapter’s various marketing drives, including media notification of events, classes, awarding of scholarships and the like. It also is using social media—Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn—as well as the website to spread the word.
“My biggest platform has been to improve our communication,” Civish said. “With improving communication, I’m hoping to promote designees and sponsors better and also to promote the Pin or what a CCIM is.”
Being a CCIM means … Fostering Others
Assistance from the Candidate Guidance Committee is available to CCIM candidates, those working toward the designation, in the form of guidance, encouragement and mentoring.
The chapter also supports and promotes its sponsors, both members and non-members, as they help fund its events. The Sponsorship Committee, one of the largest, does so by offering marketing opportunities to sponsors on every possible occasion and by hosting dedicated events, such as the Sponsor Appreciation Mixer. Sponsors are promoted in social media, in Perspective and on the chapter’s website and asked to participate on luncheon panels when possible. Members do their best to conduct business with sponsors as well.
“As a board,” Katz said, “we are constantly talking about making sure we give business to our sponsors to show the benefits of CCIM.”
Katz, who said getting the designation “was one of the best decisions I ever made,” is so grateful to the organization that he’s paying it forward as the Southern Nevada chapter’s president-elect.
“It’s a big deal to be a CCIM, and people take it seriously,” he said.