Tom Bakewell

Tom Bakewell, StreetLights Residential
Membership Chair

1. As this year’s membership chair, why is our annual midyear membership pricing offer – through which one can join TREC at half price for the remainder of the year before October 1 – so valuable?

TREC’s midyear membership pricing is a great value for companies that have recently relocated to Dallas, or for those who may have just recently learned about TREC having been exposed through one of our Foundation events such as FightNight or Giving Gala. The midyear membership option provides an opportunity to experience all the benefits of TREC membership for half the price. I can think of no better way for a company who is looking to quickly get plugged into the real estate business community, city politics and volunteer opportunities than by joining TREC. There are a lot of upcoming programs and events that TREC has packed into the remainder of the year and you don’t want to miss out on them!

2. What are some of the best ways our members can help recruit their colleagues to join The Real Estate Council?

One of the best ways to recruit new members that I have found over the years is to purchase a table at one of TREC’s program events and invite a couple of guests. Speaker Series, for instance, is a great introduction for TREC to showcase the networking possibilities with the pre-program coffee, usually a quick update on TREC’s volunteer opportunities and then the educational insights from the program itself. It is hard to attend one of these events and not leave recognizing the impact that TREC has on our city and community. Whether you are interested in growing your business contacts, educating yourself on relevant topics in our region or just catching up with some old friends, TREC’s Speaker Series hits all those boxes.

3. What is the best meal in Dallas?

Tough question. There are so many great restaurants in Dallas and it seems like more are coming every week. Club Schmitz was hard to beat. Great burger and tater tots, a jukebox with some old country classics, the same friendly (but not fast) wait staff year after year, and of course cheap beer. Now that that institution is no more, I would have to say my wife and I love Eno’s pizza in Bishop Arts. Great atmosphere and there is no thinner, crispier crust in town! For a bit more upscale, we love Neighborhood Services – for steak frites.

4. A career in commercial real estate often provides you access to unique vantage points across the city. What’s the best view in Dallas?

Hard for me not to say it is the view from the top of one of StreetLights Residential’s buildings like The McKenzie, just north of Knox Street, or The Case in Deep Ellum. I feel the “best view in Dallas” is continually changing with all the great developers we have in this city. Back in my college days, the best view was thought to be the view from Nana Grill atop the Anatole; then, as I started my career, I attended an event at the Crescent Club and realized what an amazing view of Downtown it provided. Every time I’m in one of the new offices buildings, I discover a new view of our ever-changing skyline. I never mind waiting a few minutes for a meeting to start when I’m in a new conference room with a great view of our city.

5. TREC’s guiding principle and challenge to its members is to ‘Build the City You’ve Imagined.’ What does that expression mean to you? What kind of lasting impact do you want your commercial real estate career to have on Dallas?

One of the great things about TREC’s new vision statement is that each member can make it their own and personalize it to help build what they believe are the attributes of a great City. It is easy to get overwhelmed with the many needs facing our city, so for me personally, I believe it is best to focus on one area where you have passion. As you move into the later stages of your career, it seems inevitable that your focus moves more from “how do I get ahead” to “how do I raise others up around me” – whether it be mentoring the next generation of leaders in the Associate Leadership Council, or the less fortunate in our community. I would like to have a lasting impact in the South Dallas sector of our city, and specifically on creating affordable housing options in our community. I’m excited to see the impact of TREC’s Dallas Catalyst Project and figure out how I can play a role in its success.