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Bill Beall planted his firm in Springfield three decades ago without a single personal contact in the area.
Bill Beall planted his firm in Springfield three decades ago without a single personal contact in the area.

Real estate industry loses veteran

Posted online
Veteran commercial real estate agent Bill Beall died July 5 after a two-year bout with cancer. Officials with Bill Beall Co. Inc. said the company founder died in his Livingston, Mont., home. He was 68. In an e-mail sent July 7 to colleagues in the commercial real estate industry, Beall Co. designated broker Nancy Herchenroeder said it would be “business as usual” in the company’s office, 2905 S. National Ave. “Bill structured his succession plan and took care of all the necessary paperwork some time ago, so our transition has already taken place,” Herchenroeder wrote in the e-mail sent through Xceligent, a listing service for commercial agents. “While we will never be able to fill Bill’s shoes, we will do everything in our power to carry on his legacy with pride and confidence.”

Staying the course
In a separate e-mail responding to Springfield Business Journal’s questions, Herchenroeder said Beall’s wife, JoNell, has assumed the role of company president. Herchenroeder, Beall’s 10-year colleague, is handling day-to-day operations, working with commercial real estate agent Joni Mashburn and recent addition Paula Glossip, a former banker who is studying for her real estate license.

Bill Beall’s son, Brad, worked as the company’s general counsel the last five years but decided earlier this year to pursue a private law practice, Herchenroeder said.

Springfield roots
Bill Beall founded the commercial and industrial real estate company in 1977 after graduating from the University of Missouri and serving in the Vietnam War. Using a map and economic survey data, Beall chose Springfield without a personal contact in the area.

The firm has represented The Swisshelm Group, Summer Fresh Supermarkets and Dairy Farmers of America, according to www.billbeall.com. Deals in recent years include initiating the ground lease for Logan’s Roadhouse on East Battlefield Road, and build-to-suit projects in south Springfield such as Zio’s Italian Kitchen and Starbucks Coffee. In addition to selling and leasing, Herchenroeder said Beall Co. manages commercial properties for more than 25 entities comprising 750,000 square feet, including retail, medical, office, industrial and self-storage properties, notably Kickapoo Corners, Orthopaedic Specialists of Springfield and Chestnut Warehouse. Retail developments in Springfield the firm was involved with include Lowe’s, Circuit City and Target.

While the portfolio is large, Beall ran a tight ship.

“I have three ladies in the office and myself,” Beall told an SBJ writer in 1999. “It’s a one-man show, but it’s a show.”

Swisshelm Group Director Bruce Swisshelm said he worked with Beall on nearly 30 real estate and restaurant deals across southern Missouri, personally partnering on some and others for Swisshelm Group holdings such as its Burger King franchise.

“He was one of the first people I met in town,” Swisshelm said of their late 1970s introduction. “I relied on him very exclusively in terms of real estate over the years. Bill had contacts in the real estate industry all over the country. He was always in the know, who was coming and who was going,” he added.

Noting that he hopes to continue as an active client of Bill Beall Co., Swisshelm said, “I will certainly miss him and his friendship.”

Beall got his start in real estate at 19, when he bought a Columbia apartment house on a borrowed down-payment and paid his college tuition with rental cash flow, according to previous SBJ reports. Known as Barney to those closest to him, according to the obituary published in the July 7 Springfield News-Leader, Beall was a founding member of Signature Bank, which after a merger and acquisition is now BancorpSouth. An environmentalist and avid fly fisherman and hunter, Beall started the Ozarks’ Chapter of Ducks Unlimited and was a lifetime member of Delta Waterfowl.

The obituary said he was actively restoring prairie grasses and wildlife habitat on his farms in Jasper County and kept a native wildflower field on his Montana property, which the Illinois native owned for 30 years.

Herchenroeder said Beall was diagnosed with a type of kidney cancer called renal cell carcinoma in 2008.

The Beall family planned a private funeral service.[[In-content Ad]]

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