T. Dallas Smith Names New President At Influential Brokerage Firm
T. Dallas Smith, who founded one of the largest Black-owned commercial real estate firms in the country, is ceding the day-to-day reins of the eponymous tenant representation and sales brokerage company.
Leonte Benton, a 38-year-old principal at T. Dallas Smith & Co., has been named president of the firm, according to The Saporta Report. Benton, who has been with Smith since the founding of the firm in 2007, will lead the brokerage while Smith, who remains CEO, will focus more on a new venture called TDS Investments, according to the online business publication.
“We started from scratch, and we became the No. 1 African American tenant rep firm in the country,” Smith told The Saporta Report. “[Leonte has] got this business down cold. People like him. People respect him. He’s young, but he’s got an old soul.”
The firm rose in prominence in 2020 after it represented Microsoft as the tech firm plotted a huge office presence in Metro Atlanta. Benton -- one of Bisnow's featured panelists at its upcoming Atlanta office market event -- was among the brokers that helped steer Microsoft to its planned new campus in Atlanta's Grove Park neighborhood, a historically Black enclave on the city's westside, the Atlanta Business Chronicle reported.
Benton has also represented AT&T and The Coca-Cola Co. He serves on several boards, including the Atlanta Police Foundation, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and the state education department.