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Planner ends 10-year stint with City, leaves for commercial brokerage

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Lory Markham

RICHMOND, Va. — After a decade in the trenches and bureaucracy of City Hall, Richmond’s No. 2 city planning official is making a move to the private sector and the flip side of the business of commercial real estate.

Lory Markham, principal planner with the city’s planning and development review department, has submitted her resignation and is taking a job with One South Commercial, a division of One South Realty Group.

The Powhatan native and UVA grad will be taking the skills and connections she’s developed in her 10 years at City Hall and applying them to her new role as a commercial real estate broker. She also plans to do site consulting work for developers, advising them on how to get their projects through the approval process.

She’s been doing the same for years, albeit from a different perspective, in her role at the city, reviewing development proposals that required special approvals from the planning commission or planning director. She also served as secretary to the commission and oversaw requests for special-use permits, making her a point of contact for developers seeking new uses for old properties not allowed by existing zoning.

Markham, 36 and a married mother of two, said the move was not prompted by any dissatisfaction with her job, or by the change in administration taking effect with the election of new mayor Levar Stoney.

“I hope it is not perceived that way,” she said. “I am really excited about Levar Stoney and this new administration. I think the direction they’re heading is right on track.”

“It has nothing to do with what’s happening at City Hall. It’s more my professional growth and making a change in my life to continue to help the city grow and become a better place–on the private side of things.”

Markham said she reached out to One South associate broker and partner Tom Rosman and other brokerages in town after years of talking real estate with her aunt, Pat Hancock, an agent with Joyner Fine Properties.

She said the seeds were further planted last fall when fellow planner Daniel “Willy” Thompson left the city to help his wife, Alexis Thompson, an agent with One South Realty.

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