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Last night?s Atlanta Commercial Board of Realtors Million Dollar Club banquet lived up to the hype and even had some surprises (read on).  And based on the crowd at the hotel bar afterward, we can report that the new venue, the Buckhead St. Regis, is pretty popular with brokers—although, face it, any place with a bar would be.

Emcee John O'Neill of Cushman & Wakefield
Emcee John O'Neill of Cushman & Wakefield deftly mixed fun facts and video clips of his bumbling alter ego Bobby McDougall to produce a well-paced event that centered on revealing lists of top brokers in office, industrial, retail, land and investment sales.
Metzler?s Ben Blakeley and Brett Hunsaker

O'Neill followed in the footsteps of Brett Hunsaker, right, who has emceed his share of major events, and as of last month took on extra duties as Grubb?s Atlanta market leader. Here he no doubt shares networking secrets with Metzler?s Ben Blakeley that have earned him the moniker King of Schmooze.

CB?s John Shlesinger and Sam Holmes

No one was shocked when CB?s John Shlesinger and Sam Holmes topped the board?s annual ranking of office tenant reps. But many were caught off guard when ?John & Sam? tied for No. 2 on the industrial  tenant rep list. When Jones Lang's Clark Gore announced the news, he acknowledged they were ?expanding their empire.? While the board declined to say which deal catapulted Batman and Robin to the win, we hear it was another lease for—surprise—a large media empire based right here in Atlanta. (Not us.)

2010 Commercial Board president Alan Joel of Joel & Granot

2010 Commercial Board president Alan Joel of Joel & Granot Commercial Real Estate presided over the big event, which attracted about 350. Next up for Joel: helping oversee the Atlanta Board of Realtors? Centennial Celebration to be held April 22 at the board?s complex on Lake Forrest Drive. Well, next up other than his beloved swim season at Brookwood Hills.

Dave Smith
Alan's colleague  Dave Smith  arrived early to support his boss, and a good thing: It allowed him time to beta test his idea of sticking nametags on fingers, until shaking a few hands persuaded
him of the traditional logic that they are better placed on lapels.
Angi Jerguson, center, Cushman's Ken Ashley, right, and CresaPartners' Jim Byrd

Of course, the banquet wouldn't have happened without the work of staff. Angi Jerguson, center, was instrumental in planning, and Cushman's Ken Ashley, right, served as co-chair. We let their friend, CresaPartners' Jim Byrd, into the pic to bathe in reflected glory.