Current address: 11832 Fishing Point Drive, Suite 400, Newport News, VA 23606
Contacts and titles: Vince Campana, supervising broker; Thomas Waltz, principal broker; Jane Ruehrwein, executive administrator
Product or service: Commercial real estate
Year business was established: 2006. Formerly with Drucker and Falk, the partners have a total of 75 years experience. The company is active in professional and charitable organizations. Ruehrwein’s Akita, named Kiyoshi Bear, is a therapy dog that visits a neighboring oncology clinic and nursing homes. She is also a regular in the office.
Reason for locating in Oyster Point: “The greater Peninsula is ‘sprinkled’ with our real estate deals,” says Waltz. “Oyster Point provides a central location.”
Significant milestones: Williamsburg office opened four years ago.
A significant story: Waltz relates an anecdote regarding the rental of office space to Canon Virginia prior to its opening in Oyster Point. “My partner, who is Italian, was enthusiastically promoting a space we visited, complete with arm waving. The Japanese businessmen were attentive, videotaping it all, but they didn’t understand a word.”
Campana and Waltz share an Italian heritage, while Ruehrwein is Ukrainian-Irish. She is a somewhat “silent” partner while the others keep up a lively conversation. Campana and Waltz love to tell stories on each other. Waltz’s nickname for Campana is “Johnny Limelight.” They both vie for the lead in the conversation. Ruehrwein may sit back quietly as her more vocal partners speak, but she “carries her weight” in the success of the business. For example, she was the broker for the sale of the Chamberlin Hotel.
Why has your Oyster Point location been beneficial to your growth? “There is an ‘energy of business’ here,” says Campana. “Our business is 60 percent sales and 40 percent tenant/lease. We have had great success here.”
Plans for future growth: “We will continue to be a family-oriented business,” says Waltz. “Most of our children are licensed and involved. Recently we hired an intern, who will serve as a social media director.” Campana adds, “When in doubt, advance.”
Closing comments: “We want to help clients make the best business decisions possible,” says Waltz. “We know that hard work, market knowledge, strong relationships and a little luck will see us through,” he adds. The conference room prominently displays a painting of “The Charge of the Light Brigade.” The soldiers are featured in full charge, full of confidence. Though the observer knows the outcome, Campana and Waltz still find it inspiring, optimistic and full of potential. Remarking on the changes he has seen in the commercial real estate business, Campana estimates a newcomer would need about five years to get established. A new agent must be versatile, as specializing is difficult in the current economy.
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