Mr. Somers began his law career in Los Angeles, California at Greenberg, Glusker, Fields, Claman & Machtinger in Century City and then for Rifkind, Sterling & Levin in Beverly Hills. At both firms, he focused on commercial real estate transactions of all kinds, including representation of landlords and tenants in leasing matters. He next served over 5 years as General Counsel for Standard Management Company, a company headquartered in Los Angeles which owned and managed a large and diverse real estate portfolio spread across the nation, including shopping centers, office buildings, industrial facilities, apartment complexes and mobile home parks. In 1990, Mr. Somers left Standard for private practice representing three significant commercial real estate companies in Los Angeles.
Starting in September 1995, Mr. Somers returned in-house as General Counsel for Senterra Real Estate Group, L.L.C., the property management company that leased and managed Greenway Plaza in Houston, Texas for many years. He was serving in this capacity when the project was purchased in October 1996 by Crescent Real Estate Equities, Ltd., a publicly-traded Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. Mr. Somers stayed on as General Counsel with Senterra until early 1998, when Crescent chose him to serve as its first Regional Counsel in Houston. He was promoted to Asset Management Counsel for Crescent’s entire portfolio in July 1999, at which time he was transferred to the company’s home office in Fort Worth. In October 2000, he was promoted once again to become Vice President and Asset Management Counsel for Crescent.
During his tenure at Crescent, Mr. Somers managed and delivered a broad array of operational, leasing and legal services furnished to Crescent’s portfolio of Class A office properties located in Texas, Colorado, Florida, Washington, Georgia, Arizona and California, including the development, implementation and monitoring of operational procedures for the approval, execution and distribution of leases, consents, contracts and other agreements.
From January 2008 until he joined Culhane Meadows, Mr. Somers was a partner at Phillips & Reiter, PLLC. He is admitted to practice law in both Texas and California (currently inactive).
Training, Awards & Recognitions
- Professional Mediation Basic Training, 42-Hour Program, Sam Houston State University
- Toxic and Hazardous Materials Control and Management Certificate, 2-Year Program, UCLA
- Special Training in Customer Service, Leadership, Integrity and 360s, Crescent Real Estate
- World Campus Afloat, Chapman College, Orange, California
- Assistant Scoutmaster and Charter Organization Rep., Troop 50, Boy Scouts of America
- Junior Achievement of the Chisholm Trail, Former Board Member and Volunteer
Representative Experience and Transactions
- Creating and negotiating comprehensive industrial ground lease for new cement batch plant facility.
- Drafting, negotiating and managing the purchase and development of a high-end apartment complex in Florida.
- Negotiating multiple leases for urgent care clinics in under-served communities.
- Negotiating multiple leases for free-standing Emergency Room facilities.
- Assisting private minority owner in restoring her rights, cleaning up title and preparing properties for sale and development.
- Drafting and negotiating high-end restaurant lease in prominent flag hotel location.
- Conducting comprehensive title reviews in connection with acquisition of multi-site portfolios.
- Representing owner/borrower in connection with substantial refinancings.
- Developed and implemented numerous streamlining projects to improve and expedite significant commercial real estate processes, including:
- User-Friendly Office and Retail Leases
- Blue Book (pre-approved lease fallbacks)
- Consent Procedures
- Tenant Delinquency Procedures
- Execution Policy
- Document Distribution Procedures
- Visitor Access Policy
- Standard Construction, Consulting and Services Contracts
- Master Elevator Contracts
- Armed Intruder Guidelines
- Green Policies
- AED Policy
Selected Presentations & Publications:
- “Lease concessions Landlords won’t make … and why” presented to Transwestern’s Dallas Regional Office on July 22, 2014 and to Transwestern’s Houston Office on September 19, 2014.
- Various CLE seminars on Real Estate Insurance and “The Dollars and Sense of Leasing”
- “The Early Bird gets the Worm”, co-authored with Randy Garrett, SIOR, Principal, Transwestern, published in Transwestern’s national newsletter, April 2014
- “Mediation provides lost cost solution for dispute resolution”, co-authored with Jim Young, Fort Worth Business Press, June 7-13, 2010
- “Adjusting lease agreements may be the best for all parties,” Fort Worth Business Press, January 11, 2010
- “Retail tenants might find relief in lease concessions,” Fort Worth Business Press, June 8-14, 2009
- “Engage legal counsel before a legal storm strikes,” Fort Worth Business Press, September 15-21, 2008
Brent is an Eagle Scout and recipient of the prestigious God and Country Award from the Boy Scouts of America. After leaving California in 1991, Brent took a two-year sabbatical traveling and backpacking across southern Africa, China, Macao, Nepal, India, Sikkim, Pakistan, Thailand and Japan. During his trek, he met his beloved wife on the way to Kashmir. After leaving Crescent in March 2007, Brent and his wife introduced their teenage son to international adventure in the form of an 82-day backpacking trip across 20 countries in Europe, from Ireland and Scotland to St. Petersburg, and from Denmark to Prague and Switzerland. Brent is active at Arborlawn United Methodist Church where he sings in the Chancel Choir and the Men’s Barbershop Quartet.