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JULIAN G.


FRANCIS PRESIDENT AND CEO, BEACON ROOFING SUPPLY INC., HERNDON


A United Kingdom native, Francis in 2019 took the reins at Herndon-based residential and commercial roofing materials distributor Beacon Roofing Supply, where he oversees more than 7,500 employees at 500-plus branches. The company was ranked No. 420 on the 2021 Fortune 500 list, reporting $6.94 billion in sales last year.


The largest publicly traded roofing mate- rials company, Beacon saw strong sales in the first quarter of this year, posting revenues of more than $1.3 billion in March, although it saw an $80 million drop in profits in fiscal year 2020 compared with 2019. The company was started in 1928 in Charlestown, Massachusetts, with 32 regional employees. Previously, Francis was president of Owens Corning’s insulation business, the Ohio com- pany’s largest business segment. He also served as vice president and publishing director at Reed Business Information, now part of the LexisNexis portfolio. Francis earned a bachelor’s degree in math- ematics and a doctorate in materials engineer- ing at Swansea University in Wales, as well as an MBA from DePaul University in Chicago.


FRANK ‘BUDDY’ GADAMS FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT, MARATHON DEVELOPMENT GROUP INC., NORFOLK


Gadams is well known for changing the land- scape of Norfolk over the past decades, with multiple apartment developments shaping downtown. Lesser known is the impact he


is making in developing new medical therapies. As a major donor to the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters in Norfolk, Gadams also is a significant investor in the hospital’s ReAlta Life Sciences. ReAlta, which is devel- oping anti-inflammatory treatments, recently closed on a $20 million financing package and secured a $3.2 million grant from The Virginia Catalyst fund. Gadams led the startup’s financ- ing initiative. Gadams’ Marathon Development was also in the news recently when two of his Norfolk luxury apartment complexes sold for $38.9 million to Waverton Associates of Portsmouth. A James Madison University graduate,


Gadams invested an inheritance from his grandmother in his first apartment building in Norfolk in 1998. He flipped the building, earning five times his investment. Gadams has ridden booms and busts in real estate, including battling several lawsuits sparked by the 2008 Great Recession. But the developer bounced back, turning downtown Norfolk’s Bank of America building into a massive residential development called Icon Norfolk in 2017.


W. TAYLOR FRANKLIN CO-FOUNDER AND CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, FRANKLIN JOHNSTON GROUP MANAGEMENT & DEVELOPMENT LLC, VIRGINIA BEACH


In 2013, Franklin and his father, Wendell Franklin, along with Steve Cooper and Tom Johnston, leſt Norfolk-based real estate firm S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co. to launch a new multifamily management and develop- ment company. Aſter starting with a portfolio of 3,551 residential units throughout Virginia and North Carolina, today’s Franklin Johnston Group has more than 500 employees who develop and manage over 115 properties and 19,000 units in seven states. Taylor Franklin’s responsibilities at the company include overseeing company oper- ations, new business and partner acquisi- tions, and new development opportunities. Last year, the Franklin Johnston Group opened Coastal 61 at Oxford Village, a 248-unit complex near Virginia Wesleyan University, where Franklin earned his bachelor’s degree in 2004. “I remember going to college, driving past this site and thinking how underuti- lized it was,” Franklin said in 2019 at the groundbreaking. In addition to his day job, Franklin sits on the board of directors for the Neptune Festival, is chairman and president of the Chesapeake Bay Wine Classic Foundation board and is past chair of Norfolk Collegiate School’s board.


MATTHEW GANNON MANAGING DIRECTOR AND MARKET LEADER, D.C. REGION, COLLIERS INTERNATIONAL LLC, WASHINGTON, D.C.


As managing director and market leader for Colliers’ Washington, D.C., region, Gannon is responsible for more than 50 real


estate professionals who cover one of the busiest areas in the company. An international real estate and invest- ment management corporation, Colliers has a presence in 67 countries. In 2020, the company brought in $3.3 billion in corporate revenue and managed $40 billion in assets. For the


DONALD D. GRAUL CEO, THE BRANCH GROUP INC., ROANOKE


With more than 38 years of industry experience, Graul was hired to lead Roanoke-based construction company The Branch Group last December. He joined Branch from Centreville-based Parsons Corp., where Graul was executive vice president of construction and a senior executive for alter- native project delivery. He also previously worked for AECOM. The Branch Group, which posted $500 million in


2020 revenue, has more than 850 employees and is fully employee-owned. A University of Nebraska civil engineering alumnus, Graul completed the senior executive program at London Business School. He has been inducted into the National Academy of Construction and is an active member of several professional associations. He sits on the board of directors of The Beavers, a national heavy engineering construction association.


PERSON I ADMIRE: Phil Jackson. He built championship teams out of dysfunctional teams.


BEVERAGE OF CHOICE: Iced tea (unsweetened — frowned upon by my staff)


www.VirginiaBusiness.com 161


quarter that ended March 31, 2021, Colliers reported revenues of $774.9 million. Before joining Colliers in 2019, Gannon worked as vice president of leasing for Paramount Group Inc., a New York City-based company that owns and manages Class A office properties, overseeing its D.C.-area office portfolio. Before that, he served as Vornado Realty Trust’s vice president of leasing. A graduate of Fordham University, Gannon serves on the board of directors of the Commercial Real Estate Brokerage Association of Greater Washington, D.C.


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