Real Estate Lovebirds
Commercial real estate is all about relationships, so it’s not surprising that some of you have taken it to the next level: marriage. (Does grabbing a cup of coffee in the break room count as a date? We think yes, since the kids aren’t there.)
HFF managing director Tucker Knight and Hicks Ventures SVP Allison Knight met at HFF in 2005. When Tucker invited Allison to a closing dinner on Saturday night, she knew it was a date. (Tucker claims she stalked him.) The pair rarely talk business, but Allison says it’s nice to have someone who understands the frustrations and challenges of the business if she needs to vent. The biggest con: Being in meetings together can be kind of awkward. They love being outdoors (especially hunting; they went to South Africa for their honeymoon, pictured) and spending lots of time with their sons (3 years old and 15 months) at their ranch in Midway. They also both like to cook, but Allison says it can be dangerous if they’re both in the kitchen.
Moody Rambin SVP Terri Torregrossa and TIG Central Texas principal David Alsmeyer rack up the miles for their love — they split their time between Houston and Austin. The pair met when Terri worked for Kennedy Wilson in Houston and David worked for its Austin office. They’ve been dating (and regularly switching cities) for nine years. Now they’re engaged, but that doesn’t mean they’re ready to pick just one home yet. Above, Terri and David goofing around with Terri’s two daughters early in their relationship. (David’s got two daughters, too.)
Colliers’ Jenny Seckinger and Midway’s Chris Seckinger met at Texas A&M in 2002 — they had mutual friends and shared a few classes. They didn’t start dating, though, until they both moved back to Houston after graduation. Happily married now, they keep busy chasing around their son and daughter, who are both under the age of 2. They’re also adventure-seekers — Jenny tells us they love surfing, snowboarding, longboarding and bungee jumping. They like having their separate work lives — even when they worked at Colliers together, their paths rarely crossed.
Chris and Ashley Frysinger met when Ashley joined Chris’ team at Kimley-Horn in Dallas in 1999. HR be damned, she invited him to go on a running date, and the rest is history. (They still love running, biking and working out together.) They’ve since moved to separate teams within the company, but Kimley-Horn still moved them down to Houston together in 2013. They’re quite the powerhouse couple: Chris runs the local office, Ashley was named a “Top 20 under 40” by ENR Texas & Louisiana last year, and both are owners in the company. Ashley says the benefits of working together are that they don't have to explain deadlines, business trips and professional events/business happy hours, and they get to watch their careers and practices grow together. On the flip side, engineering pillow talk isn't always the most exciting, and they've been known to coordinate their family life through Outlook appointments and lunch meetings.
John McWilliams and Meredith Epley McWilliams also love working hand in hand — both are associates at Gensler. The pair met at the Rice University School of Architecture in ’07 and stoked the fires of love with long nights working in the studio, playing tennis and finding excuses for coffee breaks together. In October 2013, they were the first couple to be married in James Turrell’s “Twilight Epiphany” skyspace at Rice. They love traveling together — they honeymooned in Belize and will be heading to Turkey and Slovakia this year.