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James Nelson

Principal, Head of Tri-State Investment Sales
Avison Young

James Nelson is Principal and Head of Avison Young’s Tri-State Investment Sales group where he leads a group of three dozen professionals in the sale of multi-family, office, development and retail properties. Avison Young is a full service global real estate firm with 5,000 real estate professionals located in 120 offices in 20 countries.

Since its inception in 2018, James’ sales team has closed over 150 sales valued at well above $2.5 billion dollars, resulting in his being named one of Avison Young’s Top Sales Professionals, a Commercial Observer’s Power 100, and a CoStar Power Broker. James has also been a recipient of REBNY’s prestigious Edward S. Gordan Deal of the Year award. Some noteworthy clients include The Archdiocese of New York, Breaking Ground, The Carlyle Group, JP Morgan Chase, Salvation Army and Vornado among others.

James has built a unique sales platform at Avison Young consisting of a unified, client first, sales group that is broken out by asset class, rather than territory, and where brokers share information and commissions in order to provide the best client experience. This is very much in line with his principally-owned firm, meaning that principals are personally invested in the long-term success of their clients.

Throughout his close to 25-year career, James has been involved in the sale of approximately 500 property and loan sales for an aggregate value of over $5 billion dollars. Prior to joining Avison Young, James served as Vice Chairman of Cushman & Wakefield, where his team was ranked the number one Investment Sales broker nationwide in 2016. Previously, James was a partner and top producer for Massey Knakal for six of their last eight years and was named the company’s youngest partner in 2004.

James is passionate about real estate and helping others achieve success. Whether through his podcast or upcoming book entitled The Insider’s Edge To Real Estate Investing, videos, or blog, he advises on how to navigate and stay on top of this ever-changing market. He enjoys guest lecturing at Columbia, Fordham, NYU, Wharton, and of course his alma mater Colgate. He is a regular source for the Wall Street Journal, NY Times, and the NY Post among other.

James is on the boards of REBNY, Counselors of Real Estate, SparkYouth NYC and formerly YM/WREA. He is also a co-founder of the Real Estate Services Alliance (RESA) and the Colgate Real Estate Council. His greatest joy is spending time with his wife Allison and three sons Luke, Austin, and TJ either at home in Connecticut, up on the Cape, or travelling to their water polo tournaments on the West Coast.

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