ORB Commercial Real Estate Group, LLC

For the past 13 years, ORB has equipped community leaders with the necessary tools to navigate the development, planning, design and construction processes.  Recently the founders of ORB Management Corporation, Tom Wacholz and Kim Barse, partnered with David L Johnson to launch ORB Commercial Real Estate Group, LLC.


Dave brings over 27 years of business experience having been licensed in both insurance as well as real estate sales.  As ORB’s Real Estate Broker he will facilitate the sourcing, listing and leasing of commercial properties to better support our clients’ strategic initiatives.  Originally from North Dakota, Dave graduated from SCSU in St. Cloud and remained in Central Minnesota to enjoy many of the opportunities the area offers.  A combination of business analysis and project management ensures a powerful support structure to helping clients with commercial real estate transactions.

To help create maximum value in your business operations and real estate assets, ORB is now offering a full range of commercial real estate solutions for investors and organizations including: 

  • Building & Land sales and purchases
  • Tenant & landlord representation
  • Site selection & acquisition
  • GIS & market analytics
  • Property & facility management
  • Lease administration
  • Asset management
  • Strategy development – lease versus own
  • Lease up and marketing

Before embarking on your next journey, contact ORB and, together, we will achieve your goals by optimizing the acquisition, development and use of facilities and real estate.

Doug Garin Retires

We are happy to announce Doug Garin’s retirement as of Dec 31, 2014.   Doug’s expertise in the areas of planning, budgeting, customer service, problem solving, team management and implementation has been an intricate part of ORB’s success over the past 12 years and we wish him all the best!

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Goodwill Now Open!

Goodwill ribbon cutting
Goodwill store ribbon cutting in Alexandria, MN

Goodwill-Easter Seals Minnesota recently opened a new retail store in Alexandria, Minnesota that created 40+ jobs!  As a mission-driven developer, we appreciate the opportunity to partner with the investor and the Goodwill team to bring this project to fruition.


HRA Plans New Use for Old Broadway Property

Jill Blashack Strahan and Joani Nielson of Copper Leaf Properties, LLC, are in discussions with the Alexandria Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) to redevelop the Old Broadway Property in downtown Alexandria. The project represents a three-way public/private collaborative effort among Copper Leaf Properties, HRA and ORB Management Corporation to create the first mixed use development in this area for decades.

The proposed multi-level, multi-use structure includes retail and public/private office space on the first floor and residential units on the second floor. The development will create efficiencies for several public agencies, including HRA and Alexandria Area Economic Development Commission (AAEDC), through use of shared office space and common areas. Other goals include addressing the need for additional workforce housing and attracting/retaining private business and retail tenants downtown. The plans also provide outdoor spaces and amenities for public use.

ORB Management Corporation along with HRA Director Jeff Hess and AAEDC Director Jason Murray, recently presented conceptual plans and financial pro forma information to the HRA and AAEDC Board members for review. The goal is to move forward so that physical construction can run concurrently with the planned Broadway Street improvement project in 2014.

“We are excited about the strategic vision for this vacant property and having it converted to a meaningful use that benefits the community,” noted Joani Nielson of Copper Leaf Properties. “This collaboration among private businesses and the HRA offers a unique means of creating a space that contributes to the vitality and growth of the downtown area.

” HRA Director Jeff Hess added, “This project reflects a trend for multi-purpose, mixed-use development that we’ve seen succeed in other metropolitan areas in recent years. It will be a valuable addition to downtown and will complement the Broadway redevelopment plan.”

Cook County Community YMCA Nears Completion

news-imageThe Cook County Community YMCA project – a collaboration between the City of Grand Marais, Cook County, ISD 166 and the Duluth YMCA – began 10 years ago as a dream to build a Community Center in Grand Marais.  As the project moves into the final stages of construction, all are excited for the facility to open its doors later this winter.