Peter Cecora, 31
Peter Cecora was seven-years-old when his family came to the U.S. from Thailand.
Like most immigrants, they came to the United States in search of a better life.
Cecora has taken advantage of his opportunities, becoming a top commercial real estate executive in Florida. He is an executive vice president at real estate giant JLL, where he specializes in the industrial sector. In that role, he helped close the sale of the one million-square-foot CenterState Logistics Park East distribution center in Lakeland, one of the largest deals in the history of Tampa’s JLL office.
Cecora has been with JLL since 2018, coming to the company after a stint as an assistant vice president for the real estate division at CitiGroup, where he went to work after graduating from the University of Tampa.
He started at JLL as associate to the vice president. With 51 transactions of more than 3.6 million square feet and a value of about $271 million, he is one of the top 10 brokers in the state and the No. 2 top producing broker in Tampa Bay for the company, JLL says.
Cecora credits John Dunphy, senior managing director at JLL, with helping him develop in the business. The two have worked together for about five years and Dunphy, says Cecora, “showed me the ropes when I got into the industry.”
“He’s the best in the market but always viewed me as a partner not just someone new to doing what we do,” he says.
Even after all the years, accolades and successes, Cecora’s goals are the same ones that brought his family to this country all those years ago: seeking a better life. “They are my motivation every single day.”
City of Residence: Tampa
Years in the area: 13
Marital Status/Children: Married, no children
Alma Mater/Degree: University of Tampa, BS and MBA
What community group or organization are you most involved with? Think Big for Kids, SIOR, NAIOP Tampa Bay, Italian American Civil Rights League
Are you working from the company office, home office or hybrid? Company office
What's the weirdest job you've ever had? Or the weirdest task you've ever been assigned? Selling Christmas trees in Brooklyn
What's your top tip for being productive? Plan out your year, plan out your week then plan out your day. Then wake up early and get after it.
If you could have a side hustle, what would it be? Real estate developer
What's your favorite off-hours activity? Golf
What's the most significant item on your life bucket list — and what's keeping you from completing it? Living a month in every country. My job makes it difficult to get away for an extended period of time.
What's your favorite podcast? Armchair Expert
At what percentage on your phone do you start to get Low Battery Anxiety? 25%. Being in sales, I need to have my phone on at all times.
What are the top three apps used on your smartphone? Spotify, Microsoft Outlook, LandGlide
What books are you reading now? Can't Hurt Me by David Goggins and What It Takes by Stephen A. Schwarzman
What's your go-to music genre, band or act to be inspired? 2000's Rap
Who would play you in the movie of your life? Henry Golding
Where is your happy place? Hot and sweaty garage after a workout
Describe yourself in three words: Ambitious, hardworking and loyal
Who is your mentor for your career and why? John Dunphy. He values my opinion and has always treated me as a partner which is very rare to find within the brokerage business.
What are the biggest lessons you have learned from your mentor? Build a foundation of knowledge and become an expert within your market. Be strategic and creative to come up with a solution for your client. Put in the time and outwork your competition.